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Comic Book / Mercury Heat

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Mercury's sun-facing side is hot enough to melt lead. The other is cold enough to liquify oxygen.
At the border between the two, there is a zone with a survivable temperature.
It rotates so slowly that its solar day is twice as long as its year.
On Mercury, you can outrun dawn. Just as long as you can keep moving.

Mercury Heat is an American comic book, written by Kieron Gillen with art by Omar Francia and Nahuel Lopez.

In the future, Luiza Bora is a would-be police officer, but is unable to secure employment in that position due to a personality disorder. The only place that will accept her as a cop is Mercury, where a lawless, dirty colony of workers maintains solar farms that empower "battery ships," sending much-needed cheap energy back home to Earth.

Her first case is an investigation into an accidental death that may in fact be a murder, and which puts her in direct conflict with the powers that be. Luiza rapidly discovers that Mercury is even more of a hellhole than was previously advertised, and for reasons she couldn't have predicted.

Tropes include:

  • Bio-Augmentation: Everyone on Mercury uses "crystal," a wetware mechanism that allows them to rapidly learn new languages, record short-term memories, do research via augmented reality, and edit their own long-term memory (often referred to as "blanking"). Luiza also has combat modifications, which include synthetic muscle fibers that she can overclock to induce superhuman strength, lower her own ability to feel pain, and reinforce crucial joints. It can also temporarily hijack her nervous system for evasive maneuvers.
  • Custom Uniform of Sexy: Luiza is initially forced to modify her police uniform, which wasn't designed for Mercury, to a cropped shirt and shorts, as otherwise, she'd pass out from heat exhaustion. She later adopts a less revealing adaptation.
  • Dystopia: We never actually see Earth except in flashback, but events on Mercury portray it as quietly dystopian. In particular, humans are subjected to a personality analysis which determines what careers they may or may not be fit to perform. In a dystopian satire on 2010s developments in the "gig economy", the majority of the population is treated as interchangeable and disposable laborers competing only on who is willing to work most cheaply, as most job skills can be temporarily installed in human minds using wetware. It turns out, at the end of the first arc, that the terrorists Luiza's just wiped out had a point. Mercury doesn't have to be settled, and all of the workers who've died there did so for no reason; the whole thing has been carried out because the powers that be liked the idea of colonizing another planet. It's strictly public relations.
  • Fake Crossover: The "crossover" with Crossed is non-canon for the latter due to the fact that Crossed is established as a work of fiction within the universe of Mercury Heat, and the Hate Plague outbreak is caused by a mad genetic engineer who's a fan of it.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: The villain of the Crossed crossover gets ripped apart by his own pseudo-Crossed victims after Luiza hacks their wetware to make them target him specifically instead of everyone but him.
  • Industrialized Mercury: Mercury is a mining colony populated mainly by people like protagonist Luiza who can't find work anywhere else, in a future where people are routinely locked out of gainful employment because of genetic and neurological profiling.
  • Loony Fan: The villain of the "Another Bloody Crossover" arc is an evil fan of Crossed, which exists as a fictional work in the Mercury Heat world, who deliberately creates a wetware malware program that replicates the effect of the Crossed virus, For the Evulz.
  • Recursive Canon: Crossed is apparently a famous work in the Mercury Heat universe. The second arc, "Another Bloody Crossover", deals with what appears to be an actual Crossed outbreak on Mercury. The whole thing is down to a batch of tainted wetware, distributed by a Mad Scientist who's also a big Crossed fan.
  • Sociopathic Hero: Luiza is enough of a sociopath not to have a problem with torturing and killing people in what she thinks is a good cause, but not so much of one that she can't understand what a good cause is.