Staff: Kevin Hill
Pulpy action goodness.
So opening up this comic I realize that it is actually the third comic in a set rather than the first (which I normally review) but I was quickly drawn in by the fun quirky style it had. So despite this not normally being the typical review I do, let jump into Crunch: Revenge!
So launching right into it, the art is awesome. It’s got this quirky 80s metal/punk aesthetic going on with some more modern tweaks. I got to say, despite it not being professional grade, it’s damn good and has a style all its own. The lines are crisp, the anatomy (however distended) is generally consistent, the artist displays an understanding of dynamic poses that allow his characters to be as expressive in pose as dialogue (very important for a visual medium), and the displays of motion are fluid and informative. Special not should be given to the perspective some of these shots are drawn from. If this was a movie I’d be giving the director of photography a high five for his excellent work. There are a few awkward facial expressions and poses, but all and all it’s a lot of fun.
The lettering could use some work. Some times I couldn’t tell who was speaking due to the placement of the speech bubbles but I could sus it out generally after looking at it for a moment. A lot of time the lettering is pretty close to the edge of the bubble and that can be a little distracting. They should probably stick to their typically lettering or have the artist draw headline text rather than switching to some other font, it just looks sloppy (see page 8).
The plot is nothing new and that kind of disappoints me a bit. However, when I look at the genre it is going for (pulpy action stuff) I can’t really blame it. Pulp thrives on the known and shines in the execution of said existing story elements and in that context this story gets high marks. In the same way the dialogue is hokey but I can’t tell if that is intentional (al Venture Brothers style) or accidental. Either way it works. I mean we have a vertically challenged main character named “Crunch Crakerton”, how serious can you get with the dialogue?
Overall Crunch: Revenge is a party. It’s a pulpy action comic that doesn’t shy in the face of being as hokey and chock full of anachronisms as possible; in fact it revels in it. I mean the hulky hero has his shirt torn off by page 12 after bantering back and forth with an ex-lover turned villain. You can’t do something like that without going headlong into it. If you half-ass it, it would come off as either a bad parody or knock off of something greater. In this case, Crunch not only jumps in feet first, but it does so wearing it’s puply-action colored speedo.