“Skullkickers” takes a breather month to allow the creative team time to get on top of things. To fill the void they have arranged an anthology for other creators to bring short tales to us. This is a brilliant concept and well executed on the whole. More companies and titles need to do this, definitely.
Sims and Vriens open up with the weakest offering of the book, yet still a relatively fun tale. The concept of Amazombies could have been played up to more effect and pulpy delight. Ultimately it just feels thin and is not capitalized on. The whole complication rests on a weak resolution that is meant to be flippantly funny but doesn’t come across as satisfying in the least. The final coda, however, is very effective at showcasing why the two lead characters are good fun.
Clevinger writes a fun pub tale piggy backing into the realms of ridiculous. The back and forth between our leads is well played and in character. The rolling state of the tale means Clevinger, and Zub on art, can take the fight further than normal as exaggeration is the charm of it all. The ending isn’t quite nailed, but in all it’s a funny tale that delights in the dialogue.
“Temple of Blech” is my favorite tale, and yet it is so simple. Our intrepid heroes are on the case to kill some zombies. When they stumble into what appears to be a religious parlor of lepers, their intellect figures it’s close enough. There are a few thoughts they might be wrong, but by then heads have rolled. This is hilarious because by the time you, the reader, slow down to really think things through, the deed is done. These poor, ugly fools have been hacked to bits and the hero’s journey is over. This is how you take a simple tale and make it awesome – one simple twist and then blind commitment.
The final tale, from Warren, shows the dwarf using his mouth to stall for time in a battle. His massive speech is amusing and the cyclical use of it at the end draws a smile. This is much more a vignette than a full tale and yet still is effective in what it sets out to do. Cruz’s art doesn’t feel like a fit for this comic and its world. The Nickelodeon style takes the violence and shreds it of any actual brutality.
This issue is a great diversion in what otherwise would have been a gap month. All creators set out to show us a little bit more of the leads – they’re blood thirty warriors who put weapons before brains and manage to kill whatever gets in their path. But they’re still good fun-time guys. This sort of venture should become mandatory in comics as the variety of views come together to make a comic that is so much fun you’ll definitely read it more than once.