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Smith, Shannon – 25 Cent Funny


25 Cent Funny

It’s the origin story of Phillip! Oops, looks like I read the two shorties (this one is 4 pages as well) out of order. This is the story of how exactly Phillip came to leave Shannon’s school in the third grade and, oddly enough, this one also deals a bit with boobs. It also makes me wonder a whole bunch about who Phillip grew up to be, assuming, as always, that he’s a real person and not just a construct for the story. Either way, he’s a great character. This goes into (brief) detail about Phillip going cuckoo bananas to try to fit in, or possibly just to get by. We learn that Phillip was a Wonder Woman fanatic, and there’s no way in the world I’m ruining the punchline to this one. Again, what’s not to like about a funny 25 cent comic?

Smith, Shannon – Phillip!



Now come on, isn’t that just about the best cover you’ve ever seen? It’s even better once you read the story and it’s really not even meant to be salacious. OK, it’s meant to be slightly salacious, granted. But this is the story of a boy named Phillip, who gets in trouble in third grade and doesn’t come back to the school of the narrator (presumably Shannon) until sixth grade. At that time this perennial troublemaker hasn’t had much of a change of heart of his previous ways and now he’s dealing with the onset of puberty. I don’t want to give the whole thing away, as this is only a 4 page shortie (and you’re already seeing half of it in samples) but it’s funny and only a quarter, so who can beat that?

Smith, Shannon – Brush and Pen


Brush and Pen

I do love the random comics, and this one was more random than most. It’s all about a brush, a pen and a sharpie, so far at least The brush and the pen are married (as you might be able to guess from the cover) and the sharpie is a horny friend of the pen from work. Not sure what exactly work is, but it’s at an office, and it doesn’t really matter at the moment. This issue is mostly a conversation between the pen and the sharpie, another one between the brush and the pen, and, well, the brush and the pen having sex. So if you were ever curious what a brush and a pen having sex would look like (and who hasn’t been?), then look no further. I should also mention that the characters were drawn with their respective items, like the pen being drawn with a pen, the sharpie with a sharpie, etc It’s a fun little story, but the man wanted impartial criticism, so here I come to pile on some negativity! There were almost no backgrounds here, so these already odd characters seemed to be living in a vacuum Slightly unsettling, to say the least And some of the word balloons had some serious run-on sentences that could have used some punctuation, and yes, I’m aware of the irony of me complaining about run-on sentences. Overall it was a pretty good book though, especially good if it was a first effort. Removing them from the void would do wonders for it though. $3

Smith, Shannon – Asymmetrical Opossum


Asymmetrical Opossum

I’m going to need to develop a new format specifically for Shannon’s books. A cover sample and one sample from inside the comic is fine for most things, but when the comic is only four pages long it almost feels like stealing. This is the story of an opossum who was born with eyes and ears of different sizes. Naturally, this causes resentment and anger in the locals, who immediately try to kill the poor thing. This leads to an elaborate revenge plan from the opossum, and yes this is a lot to pack into such a tiny comic, especially when you consider that the cover is one of the four pages. Shannon also manages to find the time to make fun of Republicans (or morons of all stripes, it depends on your perspective) and make a moral point or two. Good clean fun, probably not more than $.50, and, for whatever it’s worth, it’s a 12 hour comic.

Smith, Shannon – Shannon Smith is Addicted to Distraction



Shannon Smith is Addicted to Distraction

Generally speaking I’m against throwing your own name in your comic title, but if you’re going to go all the way like Shannon did and also picture yourself bursting through the cover, I say more power to the man.  This is a collection of odds and ends, so naturally some pieces are going to better than others.  Things start off slow with a baffling story of a man who runs into an all-powerful Jimmy Hendrix and gets taken to heaven with a bunch of naked ladies who preach nothing but love.  Oddly, the guy can’t wait to get out of there, but seems to have gotten something from the whole experience.  Then there a few one page autobio pieces, at least a couple of which I’ve already seen in his other minis, but the piece sampled below was new to me and nicely reflects the struggle to ever find a copy of The Comic’s Journal.  The heart of the book is up next, and 24 hour comics folk take note: Shannon has blasted you all out of the water.  He decided to do a one page comic every hour of Super Bowl Sunday, starting at 8am and ending around midnight.  It’s especially impressive because the guy is a Steeler’s fan and he still took time out of the day to make a comic.  Granted, the art is about as simple as you can get, and I got a lot more out of reading this hourly strip that I just about ever have by reading most daily diary comics.  The hourly format really gave him time to dig into the small details.  There’s waking up, dealing with a nagging headache, cleaning up cat puke, picking up toys for his kids, making unhealthy food for the big day, playing with toys with his kids, and finally watching the game.  If that sounds like too much detail for you, you’re clearly not a fan of autobio.  You can’t get much more “day in the life” than this.  Finally there’s a pile of sketches in the back of the comic, mostly stuff he’s sent to people who’ve mailed in over the years.  I particularly enjoyed Ant Man fighting an ant over a twinkie, but maybe Wonder Woman using her lasso the make the Invisible confess her true love would be more your thing.  It’s a pretty nice pile of comic any way you look at it, and well worth checking out.  It’s $4, and if that’s too rich for your blood at the moment there are always all the cheap, cheap minis listed below this to convince you.  $4


Smith, Shannon – Small Bible: The Old Testament


Small Bible: The Old Testament

Who needs to read all 920 clunky pages of the Old Testament when you could just go and read 9 pages of highly condensed mini comic? As someone who had the bright idea to read the Bible over the last summer I really wasn’t sure what to expect here, but Shannon does manage to nail the high points. A brief synopsis of the relevant passage, a quote and an image later and you get the idea of things. Best of all there’s no axe to grind here, no moral viewpoint he’s pushing, just good old Bible stories. Bits in here include Joseph (you know, the guy with the technicolor dreamcoat), Moses trying to convince people of his veracity, and God being a general dick to his followers who doubted even a little bit, which seemed to happen a lot back then. Oh, and there’s also the bit about the ass, but I don’t want to spoil it. It’s a fun comic for everybody, nothing to offend the overly religious types and it’s pretty informative for the rest of us pagans. $3