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Camelot 3000 is an American twelve-issue comic book series written by Mike W. Barr and penciled by Brian Bolland. It was published by DC Comics from 1982 to 1985 as one of its first direct market projects, and as its first maxi-series.
The plot of the series follows the adventures of King Arthur, Merlin and the reincarnated Knights of the Round Table as they reemerge in an overpopulated future world of 3000 A.D. to fight off an alien invasion masterminded by Arthur's old nemesis, Morgan Le Fay. Arthur is awakened accidentally from his resting place beneath Glastonbury Tor by a young archeology student, Tom Prentice.
Tropes associated with this work:
- Americans Are Cowboys: The American president dresses like a cowboy and packs a pair of six-shooters.
- Absurdly Sharp Blade: as in so sharp you can split atoms with it. Arguably Rule of Cool overrides it here.
- Note that in an earlier scene, Arthur uses its edge to coherently split a laser in half. Not just atoms, streams of photons, boys and girls!
- And the Adventure Continues...
- Bee People: The aliens have a mother-queen, although they're not insect-like anatomically.
- BFS: Excalibur.
- Bronze Age
- Easily-Thwarted Alien Invasion
- Eighties Hair: Tristan, in both incarnations.
- Excalibur: Arthur must retrieve his fabled sword from the Lady of the Lake. The lake, however, is now the cooling pond for a nuclear powers station.
- Gender Bender: The chauvinistic Sir Tristan is reincarnated as a woman. This subplot, and Lady Tristan's relationship with the still-female reincarnation of Isolde, drew a lot of attention at the time.
- The Great Politics Mess-Up
- Heroic Sacrifice -- several.
- Implausible Fencing Powers
- Incompatible Orientation: Tom never had a chance...
- King Arthur
- King in the Mountain
- Moral Dissonance: holy hell, yes. King Arthur drowning babies to secure his kingship? Although arguably the subject of Karmic Retribution in respect of each participant in that.
- Redemption Equals Death Kay, Galahad, and arguably Arthur himself.
- Red Right Hand: Morgan finds that Power Gives You Seriously Nasty Pustules.
- Right-Hand Attack Dog: Morgan's pet ape-thing. Also Was Once a Man.
- Rock Beats Laser
- Schedule Slip (it was a 12 issue monthly series from 1982 to 1985. You do the math.)
- Second Coming: Fulfilling an ancient prophecy that he would return when England needs him most.
- Shout-Out: Camelot 3000 isn't part of The DCU. However, the 2011 comic DC Universe: Legacies #7 featured a Time Travel trip to the DCU's version of Camelot in the Middle Ages, and Arthur, Merlin, and Morgaine's appearances were based on how they looked in Camelot 3000. The issue's artist was Brian Bolland.
- Show Some Leg: King Arthur has Sir Tristan, who'd been reincarnated as female, pull this stunt on some enemy guards. As Arthur knew Tristan hated being stuck in a woman's body, this was as much a loyalty-test for Tristan as a means of neutralizing the guards.
- Single-Target Sexuality: Isolde.
- Supporting Protagonist: Tom.
- You Fail Nuclear Physics Forever: splitting a single atom of carbon/iron/whatever, even with Excalibur, is probably not going to cause a chain reaction leading to a thermonuclear explosion. Possibly excused under Rule of Cool, though, or arguably justified since in earlier scenes it is explicitly said that Excalibur's powers are not confined to being cutting stuff; the weapon seems to be able to recharge power cells just by being shoved into them, so possibly the weapon can change atomic structure or release energy of its own.