40 years after the cult classic film, The Toxic Avenger gets a comic book reboot

The Toxic Avenger #1
(Image credit: Ahoy Comics)

40 years after his original debut, the Toxic Avenger is returning to comics with a new series coming this fall from Ahoy Comics. The new comic, appropriately titled simply The Toxic Avenger, will be written by Matt Bors, founder of The Nib, and artist Fred Harper.

Ahoy promises the five issue Toxic Avenger limited series will pick up on the cult vibes of the original 1984 action/horror film, which spawned four subsequent sequels, the most recent one in 2023, all through grindhouse studio Troma Films (with Legendary Pictures flying wingman on the 2023 film). 

But rather than simply playing off of the established Toxic Avenger lore, the new comic will retell the origin of Toxie (as he's sometimes affectionately called) in a modern context with a satirical environmentalist lens.

The new story follows many of the same beats as the original - it still focuses on hapless nerd Melvin Junko who is transformed into the Toxic Avenger by a toxic waste accident. But in his updated origins, he goes on to discover a big corporate conspiracy with vast environmental consequences.

(Image credit: Ahoy Comics)

The Toxic Avenger had a previous comic in the early '90s, which was actually published by Marvel. The character also spawned a kid friendly cartoon and toy line under the banner of The Toxic Avengers, who will also apparently factor into the new comic.

"This series will combine elements of the original films with the Toxic Crusaders cartoon and characters in familiar ways, updated to tell a story of environmental devastation, corporate control, and social media mutation," Bors says in a statement accompanying the announcement. 

"The Toxic Avenger is first and foremost an environmental satire, one about a small town and its unremarkable people trapped and transformed by circumstances they don’t control. The story Fred Harper and I are telling is about people frustrated by authorities telling them not to worry about their life, that things are fine, even as their dog mutates in front of their eyes," he continues. "And at its core it is about a powerless boy, Melvin, who finds out he can be incredibly strong, hideously mutated, well-admired, and incredibly heroic… but still ultimately powerless over human behavior."

"If there was ever a superhuman hero for these toxic, miserable times, Toxie is the one! Only Ahoy Comics and Bors & Harper could pull this off...er...mop this up!" quips Toxic Avenger creator and Troma Films co-founder Lloyd Kaufman in an accompanying statement. "Toxie and the Troma Team can’t wait 'til you read - no, experience - the art and stories that the Toxic Avenger Comic Book will explode in your brain, your soul, and your heart. Above all, remember - Toxie loves you and so do I."

The Toxic Avenger #1 goes on sale October 9.

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George Marston

I've been Newsarama's resident Marvel Comics expert and general comic book historian since 2011. I've also been the on-site reporter at most major comic conventions such as Comic-Con International: San Diego, New York Comic Con, and C2E2. Outside of comic journalism, I am the artist of many weird pictures, and the guitarist of many heavy riffs. (They/Them)