Apres Shampooing
Pig's Missing Poo
By Rob Goodin
Published by Robot Publishing Co.; $3.00 USD each

These two mini-comics are packed with highly readable little stories in the expectation-defying experimentalist tradition of Paul Hornschemeier, Tomer Hanuka, and Farel Dalrymple. Nearly every story is a highlight, but "3-Legged Myrna and Her Two Lovers" and "Toothpaste Run," both from Apres Shampooing, are probably the strongest offerings. Both feature a strong narrative throughline, lovely art, and unexpected but altogether satisfying conclusions.

Goodin is a dynamite cartoonist, capable of depicting jungles both actual and urban with equal skill and grace. "Moon Lake" especially stands out for the way Goodin presents landscapes both arid and lush, and convincingly presents a solemn, eerie turf war between rival gangs of elephants and rabbits.

Pig's Missing Poo's "The Monkey and the Crocodile," which originally appeared in Top Shelf Asks The Big Questions, is another jungle story, this one with an unsettling conclusion and some apt, amusingly-staged commentary on cooperation and survival.

Apres Shampooing is the stronger and better of these two comics, but both have enough good material to recommend them without reservation for anyone with an eye for innovation and an appreciation of wit, clarity and insight. Grades: Apres Shampooing, 4.5/5; Pig's Missing Poo, 4/5

-- Alan David Doane

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