Veggie Dog Saturn Special
I do love the collaborative comic. There aren’t too many of them, what with so many people scrambling just to put out their own comics on any semblance of a schedule, but they’re pretty much always a ton of fun. This is a collection of stories that are written by Jason (except for the story that was written by Brian John Mitchell and illustrated by Jason) and drawn by the people that you’ll see listed in the “tags” section, or I’ll get to them as I continue rambling on about the book. Pretty much all of them have other comics listed on this site if you get curious about them, and they’re all very much worth you getting curious about if you’ve never heard of them. Things start off with a story illustrated by Kurt Dinse about a gigantic bully from grade school who would steal bits of food off all the trays of kids who didn’t eat quickly and how that affected him in later life. Well, it’s told by a very old man, so I’m guessing maybe some of these aren’t literally true. That part was a little vague in the introduction. Hey, as long as the story is entertaining, who cares, right? Next up is the story of a house party (illustrated by Jason Martin) where the bands show up and the author steps in to play a little guitar. PB Kain is next with the shame of depositing large chunks of money to the bank on a regular basis and how he’s sure that the tellers think he’s a drug dealer (when he actually works at a comic store). Chris Hoium has a story about a brief conversation of the worst things that people had done to their grandma, Carrie McNinch illustrates a piece on the dangers of having too much store credit at a tattoo parlor, Joe Grunenwald remembers a friendly neighbor who would show projected cartoons when he was a kid, and Eric Shonborn shows what happens when pranks involving a label maker go horribly wrong. There’s also the piece illustrated by Jason Young and written by Brian John Mitchell, dealing with an implausible vomit configuration that I couldn’t help but sample below. It’s a pile of fun, in other words, and if you’re a comic artist/writer out there who would like to do something like this yourself, Jason does mention in the introduction that literally every person he asked to be in this said “yes,” so maybe your hypothetical project wouldn’t be as hard to get off the ground as you may think. $3
These comics of Brian’s are often illustrated simply, at least partially due to the size constraints (if you’ve never held one of these comics, they’re about the size of your thumb). This one breaks that trend in a big way, as Kurt Dinse makes this book gorgeous. I’m assuming that he drew these larger and then shrunk them down, but it wasn’t done in a way to detract from the art. This is the story of a rock star who’s trying to outrun his past of summoning demons. His lifestyle helps in this endeavor, but his utter lack of concern for all of the other people who are damaged from his actions makes him a less than sympathetic character. Still, that’s half the fun for most of Brian’s characters, and he generally he has me caring about them in the end anyway. Like all of his #1 issues, this is primarily just setting up the character and what’s happening. Frankly, I don’t know if it would have been all that compelling with stick figure art, but Kurt’s drawing really do wonders for this story. I don’t know how the man crams that many foreboding shadows on such a tiny page, but kudos to him for doing it. This is $1, like pretty much all of his books and, as always, I advise you to spend at least $10 and get a sample package of these l’il treasures.
One Year in Indiana
My first thought upon reading that cover is probably pretty obvious: how much does it really mean to call yourself America’s smartest death metal vocalist? Granted, maybe the lyrics of most death metal songs are lyrical poetry, but I’ve never understood what difference that makes if you can’t understand them. And this concludes the “you damned kids with your loud music” portion of the review. As a comic this is a great ball of fun, as Kurt tells the story of, well, one year in Indiana. Kurt, after living in a bus for ages, finally “settles down” on a couch in a tiny house in Indiana and this comic recounts the history of Liquid Breakfast (a local tradition involving drinking heavily in the wee hours of the morning); his lovely temp job of, as he puts it, of “taking things that were NOT in boxes and putting them INTO boxes”; the difficulty of making a beer run when being utterly snowed in and the odd people he met along his walk; and how playing Tomb Raider for too long can make the rest of the world seem like an adventure game. The man has some chops in the writing department and that’s the kind of art I can look at all day, so there’s not a damned thing to complain about here. He even has web links to various people and events in the book so the reader can follow along at home. $3
One Year In Indiana SPACE 2009 Edition
It must be obvious enough where most of the reviews have been coming from over the last few weeks, but the title of this one takes all the mystery away.Â There are a couple of stories in this one, and I have no idea if they’re brand new for SPACE or if they’re stories that he put together into this book to sell, but either way it’s a decent mini.Â The bulk of the story is taken up with a story of a recent short tour, detailing some of the dives he slept in and how he ended up with a fairly bizarre throat infection.Â And while I hate to make fun of the death metal crowd I just can’t resist: how exactly can you tell when a death metal lead singer has a sore throat?Â Kurt also explains how the antibiotic medicine ended up being a perfect mixer for whiskey, and while it’s something I’d never thought of, it makes perfect sense now.Â The second story is a shortie, and it deals with a conversation with two people smoking pot in stereotypical (yet all too true) fashion.Â Funny stuff in here, although as a whole it seemed a lot more light and fluffy than the last issue.Â Which, being a SPACE book, was probably the point.Â Worth checking out, if you can find it outside of SPACE, but I’d say to start with his meatier minis first.Â No price, so let’s say $2 or a trip back in time to SPACE 2009.