Not to air all my dirty laundry here or anything, but Dave’s comics are a great therapy for post break-up blues. Not that there’s much in here that is fantastically cheery, but he has a wonderfully lyrical and poetic view of the world, and it’s nice to see women and relationships look on paper the way I think they should feel. Go ahead, read that sentence over again. I dare you to make any sense out of it, but it sums up my opinion of this comic. More girls, 70’s and 80’s movies and boobs in this issue. Maybe it’s better than his other books, maybe it’s just as good, but a lot of what he said in here either helped me or made me think about things, so I’d like to thank him. Probably a dollar or two, I’m sure you know where to get them by now…
For whatever it’s worth, this review is being done on 1/9/10, far into the future from when the rest of these reviews were written.Â Why so late?Â I missed it the first time around, so why not?Â Reading this now, after Dave has done at least a few really polished books, it’s hard not to notice how raw this is.Â Oddly, I mean that in a good way, as there are tiny images of all sorts of things all over the place and panels are only occasionally used.Â The nuggets for his future books are here, as he opines about how he’s obsessed with girls, wishes to be taken on adventures, fears loneliness and wants to throw aside all his responsibilities to become a hobo.Â Those are the linear, easily understood moments, told in (more or less) a conventional way.Â The sampled page is a better illustration of what I’m talking about than anything I could say, but there’s something about the simplicity of drawing the random images in his head, putting dreams and bits of reality together and seeing what comes out of it that’s missing in his later work.Â Granted, his later work is probably “better”, if such a thing can be measured at all, but there’s some serious charm to be seen in his older stuff too.Â No idea if this is still available to buy, but if it is it’s $1.
I’m not sure how many different ways I can tell you about how great this guy is, so I’ll just tell you about the comic instead. I love his Dirtbag series at least in part because it showcases his obsession with bad TV movies. There are a few little text pieces about them, as well as one about his infatuation with a girl when he was in school. Throw in some loneliness, horniness and general longing and you have another great Dave Kiersh book. Oh, and there’s his love of retards, his worry about pregnancy and his story of the drive-in closing down. This is all great stuff, of course, but the main reason to get this book is the simple interpretations of his favorite celebrities. I was going to sample a page but there are only two pages of them and I don’t want to ruin any surprises. Like all of his other books, this is one that everybody should own, although it looks like it’s not up at the USS Catastrophe page, so you might have to e-mail the man himself…
Do I have to write a review? Look, I think this guy is incredible. The page I sampled here is just about dead-on, at least in my experience. Granted, he didn’t say it, but he had the wit to draw it and put it in his comic. If you’re a male and you’ve ever been confused about females, his comics are bound to help at least a little, if for no other reason than you can find out some things that you shouldn’t do in certain situations. It’s supposed to be the same color as the cover but I wanted to make sure you could read it and that it wouldn’t be a giant-size file, so here you go.
I think the best way to describe Dave would be “graphic poet”. If he leaves anything unsaid, he sure hides it well. I just get the impression that everything he has is going into these pages, and that makes for some compelling reading. This issue is more of the same of what we’ve come to expect from him: tales about loneliness, girls and trying to fit in anywhere in the world. I think he should be rich and famous, but that’s because I’m biased. It probably wouldn’t suit him anyway, because why would he feel compelled to make comics if he was content? Anyway, everything I’ve seen from him is really close to essential reading, and this one isn’t any different. Get as many issues of this series as you can and see if you’re disappointed. Go here to get his stuff, as well as just about every other mini you can think of.
Wistful sadness, thy name is Dirtbag. In this one, Dave talks about cheerleaders, being stuck on a bus, leaving it all behind, being all alone in a supermarket late at night, first love, Halloween, being too ugly to go to school, Metal Heads, drinking, ping pong sex, movies about women in prison, being totally def, the older girl, and the arcade. You know, this might be my most blatantly informative review yet, so let me ramble for a minute. I try to save Dave’s books for the quiet moments. Not necessarily the real quiet moments, but whenever everything is too much and it all needs to just stop for a bit. He lets me remove myself from the world and peek into it with a whole new perspective, and I can’t imagine a better thing than that.