Edited by Gary Clap and Kirk Campbell
The full creative line-up for Dirty Rotten Comics Issue Three is:
- Elizabeth Querstret (Querstret.co.uk , @querstret)
- Jey Levang (Jeylevang.com , @levangj)
- The Happy Ghetto (The Happy Ghetto , @thehappyghetto , @murorga)
- Claude TC (Gronk Comics , @captainclaude)
- Alex Ross (The Mumbling Horse)
- Kirk Campbell (@kirkcomedy)
- Jess Milton (Tumblr , @jezbelizia)
- Joey Fourr (Joeyfourr.co.uk , @joeyfourr)
- Hector Lowe (Quite Good Comics , @dirtpony)
- Cass Lou & Joe Campbell
- Matthew Dooley (Tumblr , @mddraws)
- Gary Clap (Garyclap.co.uk , @garyclap)
- Ollie Wells
‘A joke is a reference to an old piece of pop culture removed from its usual context‘ – said the Gigantic Face Wall.
Anthologies are notoriously the things we like to talk about and rarely buy. The things that can be a little bit patchy in content but we feel sometimes a little hard done by because we only liked one or two stories. Come on Britain! Our comics culture was built on these titles! Welcome them into your home. Make them a little home in a warm long box.
Ramble over. Truth be told I love small press anthologies, and the small press seems to be an area of comics that antholgies actually do flourish in. You only have to look at the success of Off Life for a current example. Dirty Rotten Comics is no exception. Now on its third volume, I received this book through the post and picked it up keenly to read. A flick through revealed a number of styles, some great and some still trying to be. All were short and punchy strips ranging from one to five pages long.
It’s in a black and white A5 format with an eye catching monochrome cover by Gary Clap. It revels in an anarchic and anti-establishment sensibility that’s got me all nostalgic for those underground comix of days gone by. Similar to many of those underground comix, it’s packed heaving full of content. Irreverent and not for kids, it’s a really fun and funny read. Any book that has the last word on the back cover as ‘Fart!’ is alright by me.
Stand out strips for me include “Balloon Head” by Matthew Dooley, although I’m not really sure that I can explain this in a way beyond ‘He has a head that becomes a balloon’? (Find Matthew at www.ballwatching.tumblr.com or Twitter @mddraws).
“Kentish Town” by Jess Milton has some great art and captures Kentish Town as an area of London and its eccentrics perfectly (I can say that as I am also an ex-resident). It’s also got a bit of heart to it and I loved the black and white line work. I shall be looking out for more of her her stuff. (Find Jess at www.jezbelizia.tumblr.com or on Twitter @jezbelizia).
“The Red Army” by Jey Levang is also a cool story, told over three pages. It’s got a fantastical element that turns your head round into a cute autobiographical anecdote. Great use of movement and grey tones. (Find Jey at www.jeylevang.com or on Twitter @levang)
“Gigantic Face Wall” by Claude T.C. was probably my favourite. It included stupid people, talking televisions and ‘Celebrity Enemas’. Having been forced to watch singing and dancing (and hopping) television programmes by my partner last (all) weekend, it was a real kick in the throat reality styled shock therapy. Not for the Essex or Chelsea crowds? (Find Claude at www.gronkcomics.com or on Twitter @captainclaude).
Oh. And never go on a date with a Preying Mantis you met on Tindr.