Almost Normal Comics and Other Oddities #1
This anthology is huge! 96 pages and only $3.50! OK, now that my gushing is out of the way, how about the book? Here’s a few names: Mike Dawson, Jamie Craw, John Miers, Yul Tolbert and koak, to name a few. The problem with that list is that about half of those folks just put old material in here. Mike Dawson has two stories, but I’d seen them both before. John Mier’s contribution came from Slab #2. If you haven’t read as many mini comics as me, well, then you’ll be happy with those entries. Like any anthology, there are strong points and weak points, although nothing sticks out in my head as particularly awful. What holds this book together though, without a doubt, is the random observations that W.E. throws in. He talks about studies done on recently severed heads, a family of cannibals in the 1400’s, Spring Heel Jack, and even throws in an interview with a midget wrestler. If you’ve already seen all the old stuff in here, there’s still a ton of new material here, especially if you count it in the time it takes you to read. It’s a bargain, it looks great, and it’s informative. I find it odd that he doesn’t want submissions to have any boobies in them when he’s so happy to talk about severed heads, but I’m not here to judge. Contact info is up there, give him a reason to make a #2!
Two Tone Cat (written by Jeff T. Kane)
Well, at least Jamie managed to find an author who wants the pages to be as busy as he does. After reading this book it’s clear to me that there are enough ideas in here for three books, which can be a good thing and a bad thing. It’s fast paced, and it’s full of nonsensical things (the turkey who kills other turkeys at Thanksgiving to become the “Thanksgiving Turkey” being my favorite). I’d probably have to read it again before I have a complete idea of everything that’s going on, honestly, but those are the best kind of comics. Some things are worth studying and reading again, and this is definitely one of them. Busy, chaotic artwork and more story than a man with a brain like mine is likely to understand in one sitting, this is well worth a look. E-mail the writer or the author to see what they’re up to or where you can send the $2.95 for the book, as I’m not sure if they both have copies or what…
Class War Drop Out
This submission from Jamie was a first for me. I’ve gotten plenty of comics in all shapes and sizes, but nobody had ever sent me an unstapled stack of their work on various stories before. As such, I wasn’t sure what to call the one I reviewed, but does anybody even use the “Title Index” page? I doubt it, so all that really matters is the artist and his work. The samples he sent me ranged from goofy to funny to creepy to gross to mediocre, but it was all held together by one thing: his fantastically expressive art. Every page is busy. All kinds of stuff to see in the backgrounds, which is the sign of an artist who really cares about putting the most into his work. He’s also looking to get in on some anthologies, so if anybody is out there reading this who’s putting one together they might want to e-mail him. Anyway, this story is a convoluted tale of popularity, pigs and Napolean. I’ll say no more as I’m sure this’ll be in print soon or you could probably let Jamie know that you’d like a copy of it for a certain amount of dollars (it didn’t say how much but I’m sure he’d respond to an e-mail). Funny, wildly inventive stuff, mostly, and worth checking out. The tiny criticism I have, and I have this with a lot of comics, is to watch the grammar and spelling. A minor thing, granted, but why draw attention away from the story with something that is easily fixed? And it’s not like there was a bunch of it, I’m just picky and feel obligated to say something negative here.