Invasion!: Tank Trap
(This is merely listed as Tank Trap on the strip itself and in the Annual's contents)
2000 A.D. Annual 1978
1st September, 1977 (this date is from Barney)
Savage takes of the Volgans in a tank and under a tanker.
FIRSTS & LASTS
First Invasion! appearance in an Annual. First eight page Invasion! strip.
(This strip take place over the course of two weeks)
The Volgan Republic have seized the North Sea Oil reserves. Ninety per cent of it is refined at Gravesend. The Resistance destroy it.
He and Silk steal the rear tank in a Volgan convoy and use it to attack another. They escape to the sewers and back to the Resistance HQ on the Isle of Dogs. He is tasked with destroying the oil refinery in Gravesend. Savage undergoes two weeks of training in skindiving. He and Silk plant limpet mines on a Volgan supertanker, but are discovered and instead plant one mine on a diver who returns to his ship just as it explodes.
He learned how to drive a tank at Sandhurst. He teaches Savage to skindive and accompanies him on the assault against the supertanker.
Volgan tank Commander.
He orders Savage to destroy the Gravesend refinery.
At least seven. Savage shoots a Volgan two-strong tank crew dead, and then claims to have got three more with the stolen Volgan tank. Savage and Silk kill two divers and then attach a limpet mine to a third.
Savage (to Silk): "Right, get down there Laughing Boy!"
Silk (in answer to WORST LINES): "Down a sewer? That's about your level, Savage!"
A dying Volgan screams an "Aaaeeeeeee!"
CONTINUITY & CROSSOVERS
Savage mentions his dead "wife and kids" no less than three times as revealed in 'The Resistance'. The Isle of Dogs hideout is shown so this strip must take place before 'Breakout' and probably after 'Wembley'. Savage's inability to dive was shown in 'Ships'
INFLUENCES & REFERENCES
The Brigadier says that no less than four mines would be required to destroy the supertanker, but in the end one does the job. Silk describes Savage's scheme as hair-brained, but the conventional spelling would be hare-brained. Not that somebody with hair in their brain would necessarily be smarter than a hare...
This is a game of two halves and the link between them is a tenuous one. The first half with the tanks is more fun, while the second half with the drowning divers is more graphic. The artwork feels cartoonier than the usual Invasion!, which makes the slitting of airpipes all the more shocking. On the whole, this feels like a re-tread of several elements from other strips.