Overview

The Adventures of Leeroy and Popo

Review

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The Adventures of Leeroy and Popo

Credits

  • Words: Louis Roskosch
  • Art: Louis Roskosch
  • Publisher: Nobrow Press
  • Price: £8.50
  • Release Date: Mar 19, 2012

There’s no denying Roskosch’s ursine malingerer and his sedentary sauropod chum have an endearing charm that makes being in their company a richly entertaining experience.

Slacking off, playing Nintendo Wii, and smoking the odd dubious substance. It’s a hard life being Leeroy and Popo, the eponymous double act of Nobrow Press’s latest distinctively designed visual feast. In a very human and familiar world the only concession to the fantastic is that our amiable layabouts are an anthropomorphic bear and dinosaur. This first volume of (hopefully!) an ongoing run of adventures in Nobrow’s Serial Box imprint sees our protagonists involved in a series of inter-related shorts involving gaming geekery, Leeroy’s inept pursuit of coffee shop waitress Cecilia, and trying to avoid the one-man nerd army that is the legendary Rick Rooney…

From that description it will come as no surprise when I say that The Adventures of Leeroy and Popo falls squarely into the category of slacker comedy – that much-exploited sub-genre of contemporary pop culture – and, as such, it does tread some recognisable ground. However, what marks Leeroy and Popo out as such an immensely likeable book is that, while it has no pretensions about the pointlessness of its titular characters’ day-to-day existences, it’s also completely non-judgemental about their lifestyles. The strength of the storytelling lies in the fact that in this particular comedy of social awkwardness the central players are ones you feel for as well as laugh at; the audience may be shaking its collective head at the ludicrous lifestyle of Leeroy and Popo but it’s also secretly empathising with them, and therein lies the genius of the characterisation.

Roskosch adopts a languid, flowing artistic style that has echoes of children’s storybook illustration and provides a laid back, inviting feel that perfectly captures the book’s spirit and character. With some very funny geeky in-jokes and cheeky asides on our online networking existences, Leeroy and Popo will bring more than the odd smile to your face. On an alternative comedic front, Leeroy’s cringeworthy “date” with Cecilia, and the complete lack of self-awareness of the near terminally socially inadequate Rick Rooney, are among the highlights of humour that is brilliant in its painfulness.

This being a Nobrow Press publication, there’s also that tactile aesthetic to Leeroy and Popo that makes handling the book a pleasure in and of itself. Nobrow’s back catalogue is proof positive that there are some things the digital experience can never even approach replicating!

Slothful and indolent they may well be, but there’s no denying Roskosch’s ursine malingerer and his sedentary sauropod chum have an endearing charm that makes being in their company a richly entertaining experience. Once again, Nobrow prove that they are not just one of the most innovative comics publishers out there but also a publishing outlet that specialises in bringing us some of the most exciting new talents in graphic design.

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