February 23rd, 2006 | Published in Uncategorized
Sometimes, thinking about the origins of totalitarianism is just getting me down, and I need some comic relief. Fortunately, I recently discovered something that, for reasons I can’t explain, is funnier to me than almost anything else on Earth:
Chris’s Invincible Super-Blog.
I admit, this is probably a niche-product. It’s a comic book blog, and if you never read comic books, the whole thing will probably seem baffling. Moreover, Chris Sims is my age, which means we both came of age during the insane speculative mania that gripped the comic-book industry in the late ’80’s and early ’90’s. Those were the days when a comic that had sold for $1.00 off the rack would inexplicably go for $80 a year after it came out. And while the comics bubble may have inflated a lot of subsequently-dashed hopes of retiring on a speculative comic book fortune, it also produced some of the most hilarious, ill-advised comics known to civilization. And since they’re the comics of my childhood, I remember them fondly (or at least, bemusedly).
I don’t know why, but something about the combination of bad comics, and Chris Sims’ perfect authorial voice, gets me laughing uncontrollably more than anything else I read. If I’ve still got your attention, here are some teaser, lines that just made my lose it:
What better way to examine Black History in comics than a look back at the history of the character with the uncanny ability to embody a stereotype whenever he appears.
At one point in the story, the Punisher passes by a guy buying a boogie board. We get a closeup of him, along with a thought balloon that reads: “The Punisher does not know that my mission is to guide him–to show him that he must fulfull the grand-master’s last wish and become the western world’s greatest ninja!”
Just look at it. It’s got the Incredible Hulk fighting a character from a classic of European literature.
So what makes me so sure that this time I really have struck gold? Oh, I don’t know. How about the fact that it’s called Giant Super-Heroes Battle Super-Gorillas?
This would be the point where I tell you why the ISB has deep cultural significance and serious political implications, and why you can therefore feel virtuous about reading it. Fortunately, it has neither, so you can just enjoy the ride.