Drew Weing, writer/artist
Little House Comics, 2005
This minicomic about an adorable barbarian killing machine and his gag-strip adventures reminds me of Roger Langridge’s Fred the Clown stuff in three particulars: 1) The bigfoot-style cartooning is absolutely impeccable (I actually prefer this to Langridge–it’s warmer and humbler, if that makes sense); 2) the humor stems primarily from a human shortcoming (in this case stupidity, in Langridge’s case usually a combination of stupidity and venality) being expressed through comic business; 3) the comic business isn’t funny. Seriously, I’d love to see this character in a far more straightforward action-adventure mode, one that’s as ridiculous as this is and just as chock full of crazy enemies (The Berserker Hordes of Nazroth! The Dread Wizard-King! Mecha-King Gilgator!) but stripped of the shallow pratfall-based punchlines.
Did I mention the cartooning, though? Christ. Actually the book’s most entertaining aspects stem from the art more than the business–the house-sized sword in the final strip is a laugh-out-loud riff on the Berserk school of big-ass-sword-wielding, and that die-cut blood splatter on the front cover is witty and eye-catching (that cover scan doesn’t do it justice at all), and I love that Blar’s arm is almost always extended perpendicular to his body, with his sword perpendicular to his arm. The jokes could be that good too!