Tag Archives: comix

Bamtan

BAMTAN In: ‘No Crime Please’

Apparpo Steel Wabspnp
I got my copy at Sticky for $5
The colour printing is actually washed out saturation wise, I’ve done the production values a favour in photoshop.

I’m not qualified: I’m always hesitant to write about comics because the whole medium is beyond my expertise (and usual smart arse confidence). But when I saw this comic it made me smirk and soon I was thumbing through the pages, there was also snickering. It’s stupid enough for me to comprehend & accessible enough to respond to.

Prerequisites for enjoyment: A basic understanding of batman, appreciation of sexual innuendo, a basic appreciation of lame-yet-endearing humour, decent slash average artwork and deliberate misspellings designed to grate on your nerves. And anagrams to stimulate your higher brain functions. And euphemisms for small penises.

Confusing: Some of the artwork in this comic is good: some of the line drawings are quite decent but they’re mixed up with stylised clowney cartoonish characters which really throws me (but this was also the style of the original comic genre, so this is probably a deliberate homage). Still. I’m not sure if this mix of realism and cartoonism works successfully. (My terminology). Maybe it doesn’t work because even the main characters aren’t consistently drawn. Bamtam starts off with a square jaw on the cover, and by page thirteen he has a totally different shaped chin (and lost half a leg in some unfortunate foreshortening, but that’s another story) (Robin meanwhile looks a bit froggish, his legs are too long). I did find the way the artwork jumps around a bit…and it’s inconsistency…a bit distracting. Like, I shouldn’t be thinking how Robin looks like a frog, right?

But is it hilarious and did it make you LOL: Yes. Yes it did. Finally we have the hero we deserve. It’s got that twist of absurdist humour that hits the spot.

Destined for obscurity: Cultural reference to one time Australian muso and ‘media personality’ slash light entertainment presenter Coxy.

Bonus points for: the double meaning of Bantam as both anagram and slang for tiny dick. (I had to be educated on this, so less street cred points for me).

-E.P.

 

Sketchy Friends

Sketchy Friends
Neil Sanders
www.neilsanders.com.au
I got my copy at Sticky for $5

A full colour (and fully colourful) fold out pocket-zine of smiley monster creatures with loopy arms and legs with excellent production values.

Schmick: This is a bright little number with a perfectly manufactured dusk jacket. You know when something’s been cut and folded by precision instruments? (chills). This has been printed by the ‘Melbourne Polytechnic Printroom’. I thought this might be a hipster name for a new artist studio, but in fact it’s more likely to be a tafe (=college) printing service. LOL.

No space wasted: I love it when zinemakers consider the format as much as the content. I love how you can totally unfold this booklet, and there’s another whole zine on the reverse. Awesome and clever and has that lovely secretive factor like you’re the only reader in the world who is in on the trick. (Even tho there’s instructions).

But what does it all mean: No narrative, this is all illustrated mutant creatures just doing their thing with weird eyes and funny teeth. Everything is in bright colours with pantomime shadows against swirly backgrounds – kind of has that psychedelic feel. Half of these critters would totally sell as designer felt toys at indie craft fairs. In that sense this zine is a total zeitgeist publication: there’s lots of stuff like this out there, for better and worse, and this is a nice example of the fashion in illustration. I don’t think that’s a ‘radical’ observation to make. It’s not necessarily a criticism either.

Also: Great title.