Annable, Graham – Grickle
I read this book when it first came out a few months ago and thought it was an uneven but promising piece of work. After reading it again, I have to upgrade my position slightly. I like the vast majority of it, especially the silent (or mostly silent) pieces. The only thing I have a problem with is his… er… “homage” to Sam Henderson. It could easily be called “ripping him off” and, seeing as how Henderson’s name isn’t mentioned anywhere, I kind of wonder if that’s what he’s doing. Oh, That Tommy and Party Ass particularly… you know, what I’m going to assume the best out of this guy and just say that the two of them are friends, because otherwise this imitation is way too blatant, especially considering that they both have the same publisher (Alternative Comics). Taking that attitude, this book goes up in my opinion even further.
It has about two dozen stories in it, mostly short pieces. Disturbing at times, funny at others, and sometimes even a little of both, which makes it all the more disturbing. The guy has an interesting worldview, even if you can almost see that he’s worked in a respectable business for a while. Sorry, but he just doesn’t seem like he’s as much of a social misfit as most of the other comic artists that I read. As such, this has a slightly more “mainstream” feel than most of the things I read. Not sure how I can say that with a straight face with stories like Decency (about a frog being tortured and killed), Slight Aberration (about an accidental hit and run and the killer getting away with it), and Love Monster (about a man misinterpreting a friendly waitress and imagining their life together, much to his chagrin), but there you have it. Hey, somebody once said that opinions are like assholes: everybody has one and most of them stink. The bottom line is that this is a good book and it’s well worth checking out. A bit pricey at $15, but there are certainly worse things you could spend your money on.