Blubber by Gilbert Hernandez
Hardcover – Fantagraphics – Jan 2022 – 160 pages
Collecting the first five issues of Gilbert Hernandez’s comic book series Blubber, an absurdly X-rated showcase for the most surreally transgressive of Hernandez’s short stories. Weirdos (Blubberoo, Mr. Elvis, John Dick, the Mentor), creatures (the Mau Guag, Doogs, and Orlats…), and anthropomorphs (the Cloarks, the Kekeppy) visit places where most comics fear to go. Blubber veers between an absurdist satire of porn (and occasionally nature documentaries) as well as a defiant provocation to those unable to appreciate the difference between cartooning and obscenity. As R. Crumb said, “It’s only lines on paper, folks!” It is also a howlingly funny book, filled with a rogues gallery of colorful comic book monsters (the Pollum, the Junipero Molestat, the mythical Forest Nimmy) and characters (T.A.C. Man, Mr. Hippy, Padre Puto, the Snowman, Baron Mungo, Red Tempest) that echoes the sheer visual imagination of Jack Kirby.