Set in 2031, American Flagg is a glance into the future of politics, from the perspective of the 1980s, when it was originally published in monthly form. Like contemporary graphic novels V for Vendetta and Watchmen, it takes a dim view of what the future might hold for the world. In this case, nuclear bombs have detonated, the former USSR fell to religion rather then capitalism, the American government has temporarily decamped to a base on Mars, and the new superpowers are African and Latin American. North America is in turmoil, and it takes an ex-TV presenter turned local politician to work out that, just maybe, the government might be in the business of keeping people down rather than helping them out.
The story, written and illustrated by Howard Chaykin, is one of the classic pieces of 80’s comic history, helping to turn the general opinion of comics around. It played its part in transforming the medium into something that could be respected for sophisticated storylines and adult themes.