The Dirty Pair: Sim Hell Issue 1 of 4 – May 1993 (Dark Horse Comics)

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TITLE: The Dirty Pair: Sim Hell Issue 1 of 4

YEAR: May 1993

COMPANY: Dark Horse Comics

Story and Art by Adam Warren 

Screentones and Lettering by Tomoko Saito

Editors: Chris Warner and John Weeks

Based on Characters and Situations Created by Haruka Takachiho

In 1980, Haruka Takachiho and illustrator Yoshikazu Yasuhiko created a sci-fi light novel titled “Dirty Pair”.

So popular, a total of eight novels were created, an animated television series, two OVA series, an animated film and the 1985 television series would win the “Animate Grand Prix prize for that year”.

In America, in the earlier anime conventions, one of the biggest cosplay were as Kei and Yuri of “Dirty Pair” and it was no surprise that the series would achieve popularity in America in the early ’90s.

For those not familiar with “Dirty Pai” revolves around Kei and Yuri, two members of the Trouble Consultant Team 234 and their code name is “Lovely Angels”.

While they are successful in catching the crooks, unfortunately every mission they take on ends in major disaster as cities can be leveled or destroyed and thus they received the nickname “Dirty Pair” which they dislike. While the duo are often cleared from the extreme collateral damage that is typically created by situations they are involved in, they are talented and are great at their job.

In 1988, American comic company and manga translator Studio Proteus acquired the rights to create comic versions of the Dirty Pair.  While they reprinted the collected editions of “Biohazards”, “Dangerous Acquaintances” and “Plague of Angels” which were written by Toren Smith and Adam Warren and featured artwork by Warren and these three comic book series were published by Eclipse Comics.

The rights were then transferred to Dark Horse Comics and in 1993, Adam Warren wrote and illustrated the fourth original English-language manga “The Dirty Pair: Sim Hell”, a four issue series.  And it was colorized and reissued as “Sim Hell Remastered” in 2001.

The first issue kicks off with Kei about to go through her annual evaluative assessment by the top-secret Central Computer, the 3WA’s “Chief Operating Entity”.

Prior to the assessment, Kei and Yuri get in an argument as Kei is angry that Yuri is going out with another guy that what if she gets married and their work duo status is changed?

As Kei is plugged into the computer for her assessment, something goes bad and Kei is trapped in a potentially lethal feedback loop with the computers taking over and running the simulation.

This leads to Yuri wanting to save Kei and jacking into the sim’s virtual reality to save Kei but what happens when both are stuck in an endless series of simulations?

Overall, among the works of Adam Warren done for “The Dirty Pair”, I absolutely loved the artwork for “The Dirty Pair: Sim Hell”.  The artwork is incredibly detailed but the storyline may not be as easy to follow for some readers.  But this is no doubt one of the best works from Adam Warren and definitely a mini-series worth checking out!


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