What: An eerily prescient comic that presaged the current administration.
Who: Heavy Metal, the magazine . . . 27 years ago.
Why we care: A lot has been made about how The Simpsons anticipated a Donald Trump presidency. In an episode from 2000, the show flashes forward to a future where President Lisa Simpson is still cleaning up the mess from a Trump regime. Here’s the thing, though. That prediction was just a random dig at both Donald Trump and America; the former for being terrible, the latter for being on the path to a terrible future. As it turns out now, another animated endeavor predicted some more highly specific elements about what a ride on the Trump Train would actually look like.
A newly unearthed issue of Heavy Metal from 1990 contains a dark comic that has become almost impossibly relevant in 2017. Just the title alone, “The Wall,” should give anyone pause. Artist Peter Kuper wrote the comic, which details a conspiracy between Donald Trump and Harry Helmsley, the now-deceased real estate mogul who owned the Empire State Building. Although Trump is not named officially as president here, he does use fascist-like tactics to build a wall in New York City–to keep the poor away from the rich. Elsewhere in the comic are Trump hats–not red ones, but still!–graffiti that reads “Dump Trump,” and even the MAGA-ish overtones of “We can be #1 again.”
It’s perhaps time to look through Kuper’s archives and see what else he predicted.
The color version of this comic can be found in Peter Kuper's Drawn to New York: An Illustrated Chronicle of Three Decades in New York City.