I’m back from the comic shop this week and I got four new comic, a trade paperback, plus a hard cover collection:

  • Rasl – 6 (I never got issues 3-5 I’ll have to track them down)
  • Starman – 81 (Since I’ve been buying the Omnibuses)
  • Glamourpuss – 11
  • Supernatural: Beginning’s End – 1
  • Young Liars Volume 3 “Rock Life”
  • The Barry Windsor-Smith Archives Conan Volume 1
  • And now for a review of something I’ve read recently.

  • “Sweatshop” 1-6 by Peter Bagge and various artists
  • This series came out back in mid 2003. It’s hard to believe that is almost seven years ago. I remember when I was reading it as it came out I thought the first issues were a little weak but it got better over time. I thought I’d give it a read to see how it holds up these many years later. Seriously, 2003 was that long ago? I’m getting old.

    I was pleasantly surprised by how good this book was. I thought it was good from issue one this time around. The main concept is this: the stories take place in the office of a successful comic strip cartoonist. He’s an old fashioned conservative guy who makes an boring old cartoon that’s an institution. Except he really doesn’t do much all day because his current crop of four young assistants do most of the work. And his sister is the office manager. Comedy ensues.

    The first few issues deal mostly with the running of the shop and the comedy is supplied by the interplay of the characters as they get things done. This was the part that I thought wasn’t as good the first time around. I liked it better all these years later. It still seems like it should be set in the 1970’s to me. I don’t know how many cartoonist shops like these are around anymore.

    The last few issues deal less with the job of cartooning and more with the personalities of the people around the office. They’re all weirdo cartoon nerds so there is lots of comedy to be mined. Funny stories are to be found here.

    Some of the art is by Petter Bagge (who supplies all of the writing) with the rest being by Stephen Destefano, Bill Wray, S. Gladden, J. Ryan, and Fields. I don’t know why some of those guys don’t have first names but their art is good. It’s all drawn in a Peter Bagge style but each artist brings his own sensibility to it. It’s well drawn all around.

    Funny, well drawn, and interesting. It’s a shame “Sweatshop” didn’t stick around longer. Here’s to you 2003!