Created by Josh Hicks
‘GLORIOUS WRESTLING ALLIANCE follows the behind-the-scenes goings on at a wrestling promotion in the build up to the biggest show of the year. Dramas, neuroses and existential crises play out among a cast of literally tens of wrestlers, and at least one has a fish for a head! Dumb, dumb comix and not much actual wrestling!’
The Story: It’s Monday night and the big ‘Nite Brawl’ is about to begin. The wrestlers, their support staff, managers and hangers-on are all gathered backstage. The reader quickly gets a glimpse of the layout of the backstage area as their MVP ‘The Great Carp’ wanders through a big old overhead infographic. Everyone is preparing to go on stage and we get some cracking characters.
Michael Morris III – aka ‘The Gentleman.’
Mask de Chicken (Chicken Mask).
Satan’s Children – A Demonic Tag Cult.
Ed Toilet – Manager.
Death Machine (Rabid Beast).
As the issue develops you are drawn into proceedings, as both wrestlers and staff talk about how they are feeling and their anxieties. The Great Carp himself is suffering from almost crippling dreams of being beaten by a faceless wrestler.
The Review: We have seen a few extreme/alien wrestling comics recently, including projects such as The Unmentionables by Jack Teagle and Vreckless Vrestlers from Lukasz Kowalczuk. They have all been excellent fun and this is no different. But what Josh Hicks does differently is that he moves the action out of the ring and into the backstage area, where he examines the characters of the wrestlers without the über violence. He does this really successfully and you warm to all of the characters on show. A personal favourite is Death Machine, as he attempts to break free from his tough/crazy guy image by going on a poetry podcast.
The Great Carp himself is having doubts and begins to drink vodka out of bottles shaped like his own head. Another contender called ‘Gravy Train’ is suffering identity issues as he feels he looks ridiculous – as he is literally a bowl of gravy! He experiments with some other ‘wardrobe montage’ costumes in an hilarious sequence.
I’m sure you get the idea.
This is a quirky, fun and funny book that will put a smile on your face. It also has enough of a comix/comedy edge to make it stand out from the crowd. The art is in red and white in the most part and on the printed comic can appear a little light in places but never to a point where it is made unreadable. Josh’s line work is clean and great to read. He also has a grasp of comedy timing that he uses to great advantage in some ridiculously imagined scenes. His wrestler designs are excellent and I cannot wait to see the next issue.
Just remember that it is never wise to drink vodka out of a bottle that looks like your own head. Especially if you a melon headed fish-man?
You can find more out about him and his comics at his site joshhicks.co.uk or follow him on Twitter @ajoshhicks. He also has a store where you can get this book and other work.
Many thanks for reading.
Antony Esmond is a comic reviewer and writer – his hips don’t lie.