Day 58, No. 58. Axel Pressbutton

Laser EraserHAIRCUT 100: Day 58, No. 58. Axel Pressbutton, Psychotic Cyborg, created by Steve Moore (under the pseudonym ‘Pedro Henry’) and Alan Moore (no relation, under the pseudonym ‘Curt Vile’), way back before Marvelman, V for Vendetta and Watchmen. The character first appeared in the strip ‘Three-Eyes McGurk and his Death Planet Commandos’ in the indie British music magazine Dark Star in 1979, returning in ‘The Stars My Degredation’ in Sounds the following year, finally settling down in the short-lived but hugely influential Warrior magazine, launched in 1982, teamed with Mysta Mistralis, the ‘Laser Eraser,’ written by Steve Moore and illustrated by Steve Dillon, the team that also gave us Absolm Daak: Dalek Killer in Marvel’s old Dr. Who Weekly. Those were the days – I still have the original comics…

Originally a mild-mannered and plant-loving florist, Axel was partially eaten by a Vegan Green Fungus, a sentient and telepathic plant lifeform which anaesthetises its victim and empathises as it feeds, apologising profusely during the process and managing pain. It began with his feet, and Axel spent a very long weekend in his greenhouse going slowly out of his mind until rescued. Only his head, his right arm and part of his chest survived, along with a newly acquired and pathological hatred of plants, fruits and vegetables. Rebuilt as a cyborg with a cleaver for a left arm, Axel’s engineer kindly fitted a button to his chest connected directly to the pleasure centres of his brain to make up for the absence of genitalia clearly marked ‘Press.’ Now working as a ‘Laser Eraser’ – a bounty hunter/assassin – this button has at times proved problematic, as some adversaries have figured out that if they press it during combat, Axel will be incapacitated by a fifteen second orgasm. Some stories were reprinted in Eclipse Comics, but rumours of a revival of the character have thus far been unfounded. ‘Maybe if I chopped off a few fingers it’d loosen his tongue. No? How about something else…’

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