Sunday, January 17, 2010

Snake Pit 2007, Snake Pit 2008 (Microcosm)

Ben's long running daily diary comics, which in three panels usually recount going to work, band practice, and getting fucked up (plus a soundtrack song noted in the margin) are ultimately incredibly mundane, monotonous, and unchallenging. But they are also pretty fucking true. Though he leads a fairly satisfying life (which alows him to not make tortured genius comics or commit suicide) he is seriously providing the kind of info here that could be either a user's manual or a Scared Straight intervention for anyone considering becoming a rock 'n' roll lifer. In both of these volumes Ben's pen teases towards some visual shake-ups (historically he has only gone balls out weird during his horror movie/Zap comix wasted sequences, now he's exploring that weirdo linework more often) and it definitely keeps things more off balance and intersting. But in 2008 when he sort of starts to settle down with his gal, dog, and life you really start to sense there could be some big changes coming. Of course when getting a dog is your book's equivalent to Maus' concentration camp internment or Superman's Krypton explosion you know you are dealing with a pretty low key comic.

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