Thursday, February 23, 2012

Nix Comics Quarterly #2, #3, #4

(www.nixcomics.comThis rock –n- roll-centric horror anthology is a full color blast, and has quickly become my fave indie book out there. The second issue opens with a gruesome rock n roll fable where an Alice Cooper-type and a Marilyn Manson-type face off…and they don’t use golf clubs! It is drawn by the great King Merinuk, the Wally Woods-ian superhero of neo-EC comics style.  By actually having a second issue the publisher also fulfilled the promise made in the first issue that there would be recurring characters: The incongruous (for a horror/rock n roll hybrid book) Bus Stop Ned is basically a white version of Harvey Pekar’s Mr. Boats mixed with a dementia-addled Duplex Planet character (illustrated overheard non-sequiturs that may or may not be profound), and the couldn’t-be-more-congruous (for a horror/rock n roll hybrid book) unnamed punk rock priest who fights monsters and apparently borrows all his clothes from the Ramones and his sunglasses from Question Mark and the Mysterians. With the third issue NIX finally learns something that every EC fan knew before they could read…a killer cover is worth its weight in bones (although the painted cover by Glen Ostrander is more akin to a Warren publication…or maybe one of those Mexican-artist Chick tracts). It illustrates a thrilling story (for record and horror fans) of a Brian Jones-esque Satan trying to swap vintage vinyl for souls. That, some werewolf massacres, more of the recurring characters, plus “true” soul tales about James Brown makes this the best issue yet DESPITE the absence of Merinuk! But the King is back in issue 4, which continues to raise the levels of both the graphic excellence (though the underground zinester in me loves some of the amateurish scribblings, the slick lines of Ostrander, Merinuk, Andy Bennett, and Ryan Brikerhoof are pretty boss) and the rock n’ roll quotient, with an in depth look at what exactly happened to Quick Joey Small after he went over the wall.  Recently they announced that they are going to do a reverse-EC, and instead of turning their cowboy comics line into horror books, they will be launching a western title…kickstart them at

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