Overview

Hybrid Bastards #1

Review

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Hybrid Bastards #1

Credits

  • Words: Tom Pinchuk
  • Art: Kate Glasheen
  • Inks: Kate Glasheen
  • Colors: Kate Glasheen
  • Story Title: N/A
  • Price: $3.99
  • Release Date: Dec 12, 2007

This series came out of the blue, a complete and utter surprise, but what a wonderful one at that.  Just take this direct quote from the comic, as Hera explains thusly to Zeus:

“For just one mindless night, you felt a ferocious attraction to all things inanimate.  Cars, mailboxes, refrigerators…they all knew the tender charms of King Zeus.  By morning, your godly seed was sown in dozens upon dozens of things.  Not mortal girls, not creatures, but things.  That was eighteen years past, and since then, the rotten, twisted fruit of your indiscretions have grown and festered into…

UNNATURAL HYBRID BASTARDS!

And there you have it.  Hybrid Bastards is about Zeus’ ultimate comeuppance for his invariable infidelity.  After centuries of beautiful demi-god offspring, he must now contend with Walter (born of a wall), Carmine (born of a car), Cotton (born of an assemblage of clothing), Panos (born of a garden statue), and Corey (born of a tomato).  Outraged, Zeus charges thuggish minions to “take care” of his freak children, but the above mentioned handful band together and escape, prepared to bring about a little whup-ass to their estranged father.  Now if only they could figure out how, or even really get a single clue between them.

Tom Pinchuk (writer of “What I Am”, a comic short seen in Alterna Tales Anthology #1, a book available for free ) teams up with Kate Glasheen, both relative newcomers, but both responsible for the best damn comic book to come out last week, bar none.  HB is very silly, very irreverent, and yet there’s an endearing naiveté to its core, an empathy that coincides with its often flippant style of humor.  The Bastards themselves, though the heroes of the piece, are seriously flawed individuals, definite underdogs but not much beyond that.  Pinchuk’s script wields an underground comix level of dreamlike absurdity, both in story and prose, a sensibility that cannot help but charm the socks (or maybe even the pants, if you’re so inclined) off of any who dig in and soak up the flow.

Speaking of flow, Kate Glasheen further cements the book as a unique entity, with layouts  that refuse to correspond to any standard (a design sense reflected in her disjointed though easy-to-navigate website), and figures that couple the compact creativity of Matt Howarth with the weeping willow liquidness of Kent Williams.  On cursory glance, the pages of HB look daunting to deconstruct, but Glasheen keeps it intuitive, effortless to simply read the text, peek at the pretty pictures, and understand it implicitly.

To sum up: Hybrid Bastards is the best comic of the week (that’d be last week, Dec. 12th) and additionally my favorite #1 from Archaia thus far, and being up against Robotika, Mouse Guard, Engineer, Misericordia, The Killer, etc., etc., that is super-high praise indeed.  This book made me happy - not just satisfied or thrilled, but through-and-through happy.  Not many books can do that.  But Hybrid Bastards is one of ‘em.

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