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‘Milk and Cheese: Dairy Products Gone Bad’ – Advance Trade Paperback Review

Think back – back to when you were fresh and impressionable, latching onto whatever strikes your fancy. You were influenced to be sure. TV, radio: These things meant plenty in the early ’90s, but the real information was passed along the old fashioned way. Through ‘zines, around hackey sack circles. The older kids and what they learned in school. Not from a text book or CliffsNotes, but from the cool science teachers or guidance counselors that turned them on to what the outside world really had to offer, far beyond the walls and confinements of school or home. Getting the skinny on what graphic novel the “alt/indie young adult crowd” was checking out and going ga-ga over. Being able to go full comic hipster and say, “Oh, Milk and Cheese? Dairy Products Gone Bad? Oh, I read that ages ago.” I may be a hipster comic dork, but I’m no Evan Dorkin.

In the late ’80s/early ’90s, when Hammer pants and In Living Color began their own journeys, a young Evan Dorkin was beginning his own. From doodling an anthropomorphic piece of cheese on napkins to being published by Slave Labor Graphics (later, Dark Horse Comics), this was a great feat in an era of X-Men and hundreds of other indie titles, especially if your main characters are acerbic dairy products gone bad that wish you nothing but the worst. The best comparison I can think of is Jeffrey Lebowski (a.k.a. “The Dude”). “Sometimes, there’s a man, well, he’s the man for his time and place. He fits right in there. And that’s” Evan Dorkin, the cool uncle who got you into graphic novels and bought you your first underage beer.

Winner of the Harvey Award and multiple Eisner Awards, creator Evan Dorkin birthed a love child of hate, violence, and wry wit that still rings clear today. Much of Milk and Cheese involves our titular mad caps engaging in gin-fueled rage and contempt for whichever group, affiliation, or alliance to which you belong – their hatred blind, their justice swift. Whether a magnum societal leech or merely a slight annoyance, to our creamy crazies, it makes no difference when it comes to fists of fury and prophetic zingers.

A true seer of seers, Dorkin predicted (much too many’s chagrin) the rise in power of Donald Trump. The response of the Dairy-namic Duo? Burn down Trump Tower. Remember, this is only the early ’90s, when you could get away with this kind of humor and America was in control of Desert Storm. And Dorkin was cataloging the zeitgeist. If you were important enough to incur the wraith of M&C, you’ve really made an impression on the world as it currently lived and breathed. He took shots at anyone and everyone, an equal opportunity hater, making him equally detestable in one way or another. No one group could lay claim to their distaste for his work. A one-man havoc-wreaking machine who spoke volumes on politics, media, pop culture, capitalism, racism, and additional “isms.”  All the while you’re enjoying a dairy rampage, you’re also learning to love your fellow man. Or stab him in the face with a broken beer bottle. You know. Real human interaction.

The release of Milk and Cheese: Dairy Products Gone Bad from Dark Horse Comics is something to be investigated by all who can enjoy a good, ol’ “lighting a baby on fire” joke for the sake of humor. Check it out.

You Can Thank Me Later…

Creative Team:  Evan Dorkin (writer/artist)
Publisher:  Dark Horse Comics
Click here to purchase.

J.C. Ciesielski, Fanbase Press Contributor



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