Archive for Gumby

Comics for Kids, Comics for Grown-Ups

We got a little for the kids and a little for the non-kids in today’s reviews.


Gumby #1

Believe it or not, this is the second time that Bob Burden, creator of bizarre underground comix like “The Flaming Carrot,” has written a comic book about Gumby. And it’s pretty cool. He loads the story down with crazy, funny ideas — a house where everyone is named Jeffrey, gigantic fire hydrants, a man who is also a hot-air balloon — and he also gives us little opportunities to remember that Gumby is really made out of clay. Gumby turns himself into a sombrero and does his own Mexican hat dance to pay for some snacks, and a dog that bites his leg spits it right back out, because clay tastes bad! That’s both freaky and wonderful at the same time. The art is provided by Rick Geary, who has a great visual imagination to match Burden’s.

Our story involves Gumby and Pokey meeting a new friend. It’s a girl! Oh no! What if she wants to kiss him! Gumby also has to deal with his mean cousin, and faces danger from a fire and from a bunch of bad clowns.

Verdict: Thumbs up. The plot isn’t earthshaking, but it’s fun, and it’s the type of story that lots of kids would be very well entertained by. It’s probably not for all kids — older kids will think some of it is really cheesy — but for the right kid, it’s great.


Powers #25

And now a comic just for grown-ups. If you’re not familiar with the series, it follows two police detectives, Christian Walker and Deena Pilgrim, who specialize in cases involving murders of superhumans. Walker used to be a superhero until he lost his powers, and he’s recently acquired new powers. Deena has also picked up some superpowers, but they’re dangerous to her as well as anyone she uses them on. Last issue, Deena went on the run when she and Walker discovered each other’s powers.

This issue, Walker gets a new partner and investigates an ongoing outbreak of a “powers virus” that gives random people superpowers. He also fights off an alien menace and has sex with his girlfriend for two pages’ worth of small but very detailed panels. See, told you, just for grown-ups. Kids, go read “Gumby.” Anyway, by the end, Walker runs into Deena again, and it looks like she’s spoiling for a fight.

Verdict: Thumbs up, but I was a bit disappointed. Brian Michael Bendis is still one of the best plotters around, and his dialogue is still great, but man alive, this storyline has been going on forever. And the sex scene is entirely Bendis trying to shock people. Either that, or he’s just trying to torture artist Michael Avon Oeming by making him draw all those itty-bitty nekkid people. Oeming’s art is still to die for, of course. Does anyone still read Bendis’ letter column anymore? It’s like reading transcripts of some immature shock-jock radio guy who thinks he’s really, really hip. And yeah, for all my complaints, I don’t see any reason why I’ll ever drop this comic — it’s one of the most consistently great comics out there.

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