Monday, August 6, 2007

Buddy Does Jersey

Here's how this works: I finish reading a comic collection, and I tell you about it, and I try not to go on too long.

Speaking of Peter Bagge...

I found myself liking the previous collection of Bagge's Buddy Bradley stories, Buddy Does Seattle, principally because of his bipolar, on-again-off-again girlfriend Lisa Leavenworth, but not enough to pick up the second collection until a 40% off sale earlier this spring. Honestly, I wasn't as taken with this one as the first, despite a whole lot more Lisa in it.

The problem is that the book just isn't funny. The Seattle book had Lisa's manic antics ratcheted up to twelve, and some absurd situations. Here, as Buddy settles into uncomfortable suburbia, the only outlandish things that happens are the idiotic crap he brings upon himself, or situations that are just so bizarre that they aren't amusing. And Lisa's just a jerk, not the catastrophe she was on the west coast. That's not to say it's not an occasionally compelling read - I cared enough to see what was going to happen next - but more comedy would have made the misanthropy more palatable.

Kudos to Fantagraphics for a great format. 350 pages for $15 is very, very good.

Pete Bagge draws horribly ugly people to look horribly, horribly ugly. When he draws them in flagrante delicto, I want to spoon out my eyes.

Recommended to readers familiar with the material.

(Originally posted Aug 6 2007 at hipsterdad's LJ.)

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