There are certain individuals who get a sick thrill out of hiding a sardonic and hilarious tale for adults in the trappings of a bright and friendly kids comic. Certain individuals, such as writer Justin Sane and artist John Hageman Jr., for example. And, if you’re a fan of the sardonic and sick thrills (such as I am), then you will want to check out Sane and Hageman Jr.’s latest, twisted comic creation, The Woodland Welfare Manifesto, recently released by SLG Publishing.
MINOR SPOILERS BELOW
The Woodland Welfare Manifesto is a bright, eye-catching, and very off-kilter tale that is described by the author as “ . . . the hilarious story of Burnt Bear, Crazy Rabbit, and Pervert Monkey – three Proletarian animals struggling against the heartless capitalist system that rules their forest with an iron fist!” Under the guidance of the joyful, yet disturbing, Uncle Stas, we learn of the trials of Burnt Bear and how the oppression of the “corrupt capitalist system” (and a horrific cupcake baking incident) leads to our partially fuzzy main character urinating on a government document. Desperate to replace the marmalade money he lost when the government reduced his disability payment, Burnt Bear teams up with his pals, Crazy Rabbit (anarchist by nature) and Pervert Monkey (just as nasty and funny as he sounds), to form a band and rake in the rockstar dough and sweet, sweet booty. They just need to buy back their instruments first . . .
Sane writes his script with a devil-may-care glee, and while there may be satirical elements present inThe Woodland Welfare Manifesto, the comic book is so infectiously funny and bizarre that any reader (in the appropriate age range) could easily go along for the ride. Hageman Jr.’s artwork features vivid colors and a style that matches Sane’s“off-the-wall” enthusiasm. Together, they’ve created a rollicking and subversive comic book that can NEVER be unread (*dramatic music*) and is totally worth exposing yourself to.
FINAL VERDICT: If you’re a fan of wacky and chuckle-inducing properties like Ren & Stimpy, Regular Show, or even classic underground comics like the work of R. Crumb, then The Woodland Welfare Manifesto is going to be right up your alley, comrade! Sane and Hageman Jr. are an excellent creative pair, and it shows clearly in this hysterical and zany comic book.
That’s all for now, comic book sniffers! Stay strong, comrades!
‘Till the end of the world,
Bryant the Comic Book Slayer