Underground Film Journal

Posted In » Comic Reviews

Angry Youth Comix #4

By Mike Everleth ⋅ February 8, 2003

Angry Youth Comix #4

The current king of offensive comics, Johnny Ryan, gets a big boost from underground godfather Peter Bagge who co-writes this issue’s epic tale, “Hipler: Hitler’s Back! And This Time He’s Totally Awesome!”

Ryan’s work usually skirts a fine line between being trenchant social satire and pointless mean-spiritedness. It’s hard to always infer the meaning behind the absolute grotesqueness of Loady McGee and his weasly friend Sinus O’Gynus.

For example, in “The Angry Youth Super Halloween Creep-Out,” Loady dresses up as the superhero Toilet Woman, gets puked on, kills some trick-or-treaters, stumbles across a bizarre bestiality rendezvous (pig snout fellatio) and somehow manages to bring down the entire Catholic Church. This story also manages to slip in a Noam Chomsky joke, which shows there’s a wicked intelligence behind the cruel, juvenile humor.

Ryan also seems to be trying to show us how aware he is of his own unique brand of offensiveness in this issue’s lead story, “Comic Book Skool,” wherein Loady offers his “Ten Necessary Ingredients” for a great comic book to a class of aspiring artists and writers. Of course, those ingredients include lots of “Cheap & Stupid Gags,” “Endless Humiliation” and “Cute Racist Generalizations,” all of which are prominently used by Ryan himself for this story.

But the obliqueness of these tales pale beside the insightful parody of modern American merchandizing in “Hipler.” All the Fuhrer needs to do to stage a popular comeback and become beloved by the whole world is wear a backwards baseball cap, sing some rap songs and cry about how the Holocaust really wasn’t his fault on “Oprah.”

Ahhh, but what’s the point behind all of this analysis anyhow? Johnny Ryan is just fucking funny as hell and ANGRY YOUTH COMIX #4 is another real treat.