Twilight of the Assholes, or Somebody Stop the Spike Machine, Vol. II of the Chronicles of the Era of Darkness, 2004-2009

Tim Kreider, with an intro. by Matt Taibbi. Fantagraphics, $28.99 trade paper (288p) ISBN 978-1-60699-398-9
Created during two overseas wars, rising inequity, a city lost under flood waters, skyrocketing public debt and the largest economic crisis since the Great Depression, this collection is the pained scream of a frustrated liberal trapped in a nation whose zeitgeist, he feels, spent much of the decade steadfastly marching in lockstep to the Right. The excesses of a neo-Gilded Age provokes Kreider with often hilarious results; Kreider finds targets for his ire and contempt ranging from willfully ignorant Americans to the peculiar way in which a despicable dictator like Saddam Hussein became almost pitiable once in American hands. Even the eclipse of the Republicans and the rise in 2008 of Barack Obama offers a dismal respite; Kreider's Steadmanesque cartoons illuminate a paranoia worthy of Nixon, that the Republicans will simply refuse to relinquish power or decide that America's first African-American President could also be the first African-American President to be assassinated. Sometimes vulgar and crude but often insightful, always passionate, Kreider's essays and illustrations offer a voice for a nation seemingly without hope. Illus. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 03/21/2011
Release date: 02/01/2011
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