Thursday, December 8, 2016

Phoenix #02 - Ground Zero

"Ground Zero" is the second release in the 'Phoenix' line written by David Alexander and released in 1987 via Leisure. Phoenix (real name Magnus Trench) is currently an attorney, formerly a Vietnam vet and is vacationing alone in California when the US goes total nuclear devastation. He survives because he has goes into a cave to avoid the bomb, radiation and this strange Russian virus they have plagued Earth with. His wife and son are on the East coast so Phoenix is out to search for them across the American wasteland. He makes it into LA where he learns that only after three months since the nuke that the entire US military is gone. So are the cops and all semblance of law and order. Instead factions have arose and most people have dropped their first and last names and gone with cool monikers like "Uber Ballsack" or "Banana Dong". Magnus Trench becomes Phoenix. Phoenix learns there are the Contams, folks that have the Russian viral stuff. He also learns there is a New World Order called SCORF who have targeted him due to his immunity to the virus. All of the above is ultimately book one. 

Phoenix and teen prostitute September Song part ways somewhere between LA and Las Vegas, leaving Phoenix in a little town called Trinity in the opening pages. He gets into a gun fight and gets rescued by a midget named Big Wally. Adorable. Big Wally and Phoenix head into Las Vegas where the Sheik runs the show and controls everything. The author takes a lot of liberties with the character and that's a bit frustrating for the reader. Phoenix can walk into a shop and they just hand him awesome guns and loads of ammo. No one rides for free - except Magnus Trench. He gets everything for free because he survived the bomb in a cave. It turns out that it's Murder Weekend or something in Las Vegas. The Sheik has his road games where contestants battle in fast cars toting huge guns like 'Deathrace 2000'. It's only a matter of time before our boy Trench gets to meet The Sheik. 

Apparently, the Sheik needs a new contestant to represent his faction so Trench gets a sweet ride called Death Wings. After some hanky panky stuff, and there is a lot, Phoenix enters the death race thingy and of course he can outrun everyone. He mops the track up with the clowns and then notices all of these troops and planes trying to shoot him down. Phoenix is outrunning a fighter jet in a car. He ends up wrecking and falling into another cave. Here's where the author just goes bonkers with this stuff. Inside the cave is a sex cult that feel they can escape Earth during orgasm. At one point Phoenix watches the ultimate of orgies go down and, in his infinite wisdom, asks when it can be his turn. Phoenix quickly learns that he is going to have to escape the caves due to an army of attacking orcs. He chooses to resurface only to fight it out with SCORF. Phoenix, using a small arsenal meets the SCORF baddies in an abandoned town in pulp western style.

'Phoenix' in general is just simply awful. It's gun porn before pages and pages of porn. I mean every single male character is essentially running around just trying to find something to mate with. Alexander spends painful amounts of detail on guns and calibers only to completely get them wrong. I've checked his firearms and the calibers don't match. But this is trivial, yet just explains how bad this really is. If you are looking for all volumes of this series you can purchase them in digital format at Amazon. You owe it to yourself to at least pick the whole series up for a measly $10 and just poke fun at what is essentially some of the worst fiction ever created.