The Gypsy Lounge Now Available! $13.95
This book makes so much more sense as one coherent story. Look, I’ve gotten to the point where I’m fairly sick of most superhero comics. There are exceptions, of course, but not many. And I’m especially sick of most indie attempts at superheroes, as they’re usually so much like the real thing that it’s pathetic, or they’re just parodies. Parodies were fun for a while, but they’re so easy to do and there are so many of them that you really have to do something different to stand out in the crowd. Anyway, all that being said, I was pretty surprised with how much I liked this comic. Scratch that: I loved this comic. Every once in a while I would come out of my state of awe from the art and read the dialogue, and then that would impress the hell out of me too. Let’s focus on the art for a second. I hope my crappy scanner does it justice, but what you have are fluid, cartoony characters combined with pictures. I wouldn’t have thought that it would work, but it’s incredible. The dialogue is as real as can be under the circumstances, and there was never a moment that I lost the impression that this could all be happening, which is saying a lot considering some of the circumstances. Jason says in the back of the book that this is something that he worked on for years, tweaking certain things, discarding others, building up others, and it shows. This reads like a labor of love and just about everything in it is done confidently, which makes all the difference in a book like this. If you’re going to do superheroes in this day and age you have to know what you’re doing and it helps a whole lot if you have something new and fresh to add, and Jason has both things going for him. Have I mentioned the story yet? A young girl, the daughter of a failed superhero, decides that she’s tired of being poor and becomes a supervillain. She steals the assignment of an established supervillain because she figures the payoff will be bigger, but finds that she can’t go through with it. This leads to her being targeted by every supervillain around, and the rest of the book is basically one long chase scene, but much, much more complex. I’m not sure how many more good things I can say about this. I really thought that I would be mildly amused at best, but this really blew me away. Did I mention the dynamic cast of characters, most of which are either still around or “unaccounted for”? I hope he keeps this up, and if there’s any justice in the world doing so will make him rich and famous. Check out the website, or just e-mail the man and send him a pile of money. This one is only $13.95 for a pretty thick book, you know.
Gypsy Lounge #1
First off, as far as production goes, wow. This guy must be independently wealthy or something. It looks professional as hell (I think I noticed one spelling error), he did a great job with it. The comic itself is one of the busiest I’ve seen, with countless little panels inside of the bigger ones. This worked for the parts with the insane super hero, but mostly seemed confusing in the rest of it. And the characters all suffer from a certain sameness. Not necessarily the characters, I should clarify, but the look of the characters. The insane man in the beginning looked suspiciously like the daughter of another superhero later, for example. Still, the story was intriguing, about some different heroes and villains, although we don’t really know much about them yet. Maybe the drawing style would get obnoxious after a few issues (or maybe it would grow on me, who knows), but past that it’s definitely worth a look. No website or e-mail address that I could see, which is odd these days, but go ahead and send $3 to P.O. box 264 Pgh, PA, 15230-0264 if you’re curious. Here’s an example of those busy pages…