My Dirty Dumb Eyes

Lisa Hanawalt. Drawn & Quarterly, $19.95 trade paper (120p) ISBN 978-1-77046-116-1
Imagine a grown-up Richard Scarry turned absurdist social commentator, and a world where dogs sit in houses made of fish. Hanawalt’s humor comics, which previously appeared in publications like Vanity Fair and the New York Times Book Review, are collected here for the first time. The disparate subject matter allows her to showcase her different styles: scantily clad animal-people in bright colors and action-packed scenes of chaos segue into painterly images of Anna Wintour riding an ostrich or detailed illustrations of animals in strange hats. While there’s no shying away from poop or unsatisfying sexual positions (“The Leave-In Conditioner”), the collection also allows Hanwalt’s verbal humor to shine in a series of illustrated movie and television reviews (“I just wrote ‘monkeys are horrible’ in my notebook,” she writes of the Planet of the Apes remake. “But I’m hunching over it so nobody can see”). Among the funniest pieces is an illustrated diary of her joyful and childlike trip to the serious industry Toy Fair. In between the overtly humorous pieces, there are more enigmatic stories featuring animal people in therapy sessions or sculpting fingers. Even when the humor flags, the gorgeous illustrations are irresistible. (May)
Reviewed on: 03/18/2013
Release date: 05/28/2013
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