Extremely violent, shocking Italian comic.

Ranx is quite popular in France and Belgium, two countries with a long adult-comic tradition.

Ranxerox is an android-gone-wild, with only one weak spot: Lubna, a young drug addict. When he gets excited something "snaps" and this usually results in a lot of dead people. You really don't want to piss off this guy. In Ranx's cynical world, drug addicts, pimps and freaks rule an apathic world.

The drawings are impressive: Liberatore's raw, fleshy style really rocks and catches your eye in an instant. He's a gifted artist. Tamburini's stories are filled with brutal (often mindless) violence and sexual perversions. Only for an adult audience I'm afraid.

I lent the comic to most of my friends. Only a few appreciated it. People often stopped reading after a few pages and told me it was sick and I had a poor taste.

I think the exaggerated violence is always combined with black humor and a lot of irony. In fact the comic almost had the same effect on me as Pulp Fiction. People with an open mind will agree.

Two stories are translated in English:

  • Ranxerox in New York (1984) (introduction by Richard Corben)
  • Ranxerox 2: Happy Birthday, Lubna (1985)

English publisher: Catalan Communications

Ranx or formerly Rank Xerox or RanXerox is the name of a fictional comic book character and the series of books on his stories. It was created by Italian author Stefano Tamburini, artists Andrea Pazienza and Tanino Liberatore. It first appeared on Cannibal magazine in 1978, and later in 1979 it had a brief appearance in Il Male. After Cannibal has ended, Ranx started to be published in Frigidaire magazine from 1980 to 1986. It was written by Tamburini and Liberatore handled all the artwork on his own. The series ended because of the death of writer Stefano Tamburini, due to a heroin overdose. After his death Tanino Liberatore focused on Illustrations rather than comic strips. Later in year 1996, Liberatore decided to finish another book with the help of Alain Chabat.

Ranx is a mechanical creature which was manufactured from Xerox photocopier parts, living in a dystopian future Rome. He was a present for his lover and owner Lubna but when he was destroyed by some punks, he was repaired and his agressiveness levels were set to highest, causing him to be extremely violent and hard to control.

Ranx is a pretty controversial title as creators combine obscenity, sexuality and extreme violence along with gore and splatter elements. The adventures take place in a dystopian Rome, where society is extremely corrupt, and one would consider themselves lucky once they come back to home alive.

Although the name was Rank Xerox at first (a homage to the scrap photocopier parts), when the producer Xerox and European distributor/producer Rank asked in a letter that the name should be changed in order to avoid that the brand was associated with a character "whose exploits are a concentration of violence, obscenity and bad language", or otherwise they would be forced to take legal action, the name was changed to RanXerox. On the final books, the name was changed to it's final form, Ranx.

Maybe it will be easier to understand this character with help from a master comics artist, and in my opinion a huge influence for Liberatore, Richard Corben:

"Ranxerox is a punk, futuristic Frankenstein monster, and with the under-aged Lubna, they are a bizarre Beauty and the Beast. This artist and writer team have turned a dark mirror to the depths of our Id and we see reflected the base part of ourselves that would take what it wants with no compromise, no apology - and woe to the person who would cross us. But it is all done with a black, wry, satirical sense of humor."


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