Jep mentions in his intro that he spent a long time talking about “the unspeakable orange twat” after he became president, decided it was making him too sad to continue, and so he went back in time to tell a story from 1999. I’d be curious to see all those strips (I just checked out a few on his website and they’re pretty raw), but this comic deals with his girlfriend and himself (they’ve since married) moving into a place that they were convinced would be their dream apartment. The landlady was eccentric but seemed nice, they had access to a garden, and they loved their place. Naturally, this wouldn’t be much of a comic if things stayed that way throughout, and they very much did not. Their landlady had medical problems and the two of them were young and a bit petty in their attempts to fight back (as Jep freely admits), although it’s tough to say if anything could have salvaged this mess. And to think that the troubles all started because they had set up their bedroom in the “wrong room!” It really did set off a cascade of consequences, despite the fact that the original problem never made any sense. I loved the little peeks we got into the creative process as well, how Jep would ask his wife (in real time, on the comics page) if he had the timeline right, or why they didn’t just leave at this point, or if they really knew all along that the situation was going to blow up or if it was a complete surprise. Some of the events that you would expect to have the most impact just got forgotten completely, but they both distinctly remembered things like how the landlady’s husband dropped the keys every single time he came home. It’s a thoroughly engrossing story, and I can’t recommend this highly enough to anybody who’s had terrible neighbors. Which, I’m guessing, is just about anybody who ever left home. Give it a shot, the guy really is a hell of a writer. $4.58 (hey, that’s the price he has listed on his Etsy page)
The True Adventures of JepComix #5
I’m going to post the letter that came with this as a sample image because it’s perfect and more humans should see it. As for the comic itself, yeah, that was pretty great too. Stories include an overheard conversation at a beach in Cuba (always a good sign when at least one of the overheard parties is drunk), coming up with a motto for keeping your nose clean, debating whether or not “Indian summer” is an offensive term, an adorable page of the way he sees his love (or the fictional character sees his or her love), and Jesus having an honest conversation with is Dad in between stanzas of “Jesus Christ Superstar” on exactly what good it would do for him to get crucified in practical terms. The biggest story in here is about the librarian of the forest, a creature that he gets to follow him and learning things about humans, food, and what guards their food. It also has a fairly ingenious way to steal bread if you’re trying to do that while keeping your hands free, so bread thieves, take note! This is a funny and charming mix of stories, and you’d have to be a real curmudgeon to not at least get a laugh or two out of this. Check it out!