Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Don't Mess With These Ladies: "Mean Girls Club," Review

I like NoBrow Press and I like their PR person, Tucker Stone, so I will often read NoBrow's books and bug Tucker to tell me funny observations about comics. Tucker Stone is of course a PR-person now at NoBrow but before that did a lot of hilarious and insightful writing about comics and still occasionally dips his toe into journalism. Besides working for NoBrow, sometimes writing about comics, and spending his remaining free time murdering horny teens who are foolish enough to try to have sex at his haunted camp, he gets to put-up with my responding to his press releases about the latest books from NoBrow. When he sent an email with NoBrow's catalog I actually noticed a book that apparently has been out for a bit but which I didn't see before. Titled, "Mean Girls Club," it is part of the 17X23 line of comics at NoBrow that are, "Designed to help talented young graphic novelists tell their stories in a manageable and economic format." I'm just happy to have read it as this is one zany, violent, and fun book!

The Mean Girls Club is a group made-up of Pinky, Sweets, Blackie, McQualude, Wendy, and Wanda. The book doesn't give us much motivation for their being mean girls and it doesn't need to. We witness the 113th meeting of the club being called to order and proceed to witness what the club gets up to--namely sheer and utter mayhem. Doing drugs, stealing cars, murdering and kidnapping, these women are some bad dames you don't want to cross paths with. Creator Ryan Heshka gives everything an art-style like a 1950's romance comic, even having an interlude in the comic near the end with paper-dolls readers can cut-out and play with. Despite the homage to those comics there ain't any romance in this book! 
The Mean Girls club is a brisk 24-page read that has gorgeous artwork and uses its mixture of black, white, and pink, coloring to create stark visuals. There is a hint at the end that maybe at least one Mean Girl has a soft side, but otherwise the comic contains a whole lot of trouble-making and bad behavior. The weird disconnect between the seemingly-sweet nostalgic visuals and style meshed with extreme violence and a general disregard for human decency gives us a comic that is a hoot to read and which I hope Heshka expands into a full-length graphic novel (which he indicated he plans to do in a blog post earlier this year). I would rate, "Mean Girls Club," as being a stellar 5 out of 5 stars and should you want to get a copy for yourself Amazon is always a great site to use.

Note: I contacted Tucker Stone/NoBrow Press and requested a copy of, "Mean Girls Club," for the purposes of review, which they supplied.

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