Collected Hutch Owen

Tom Hart, Author, Tom Hart, Illustrator Top Shelf Productions $14.95 (176p) ISBN 978-1-891830-17-4
Despite his looks and bad attitude, Hutch Owen is not a bum. Hutch is a hardworking vagrant and full-time rebel, self-appointed to keep society on the right path. Hutch Owens first appeared in mini comics in 1994, and this new book collects those strips and two works published for the first time. These simply drawn, whimsical broadsides against the modern corporate media state manage to combine political outrage, antic comedy and a lot of charm. In the story ""Working Hard,"" we're introduced to Hutch's evil nemesis, Dennis Worner, president of Worner Products, a soulless international conglomerate, who is working relentlessly to turn every aspect of human life into a profitable commodity. He's responsible for the Punk Rock Car (""Get angry for it"") and is about to release a film sequel, Gratuitator III (""three times the carnage of Gratuitator I!""). Then there are plans to bulldoze Chimuhumhum, a sacred Indian forest (""We changed the name to Northfield""), where he wants to park his Party Blimp, and the new line of Slacker Gear (to go ""along with our Hippy Freak and Rebel Scum lines""). But while Hutch is occasionally down (his anti-Worner graffiti sets the bad guys after him), he's never quite out. He's an everyman fed up with office cubicles arranged in a maze, the hysteria for professional sports, stock market idolatry and bars crowded with yuppies on cell phones. Hart's black and white comic offers a sweet, left-wing diatribe against the corporate takeover of the marketplace and the apparent consequent acquisition of our souls. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 01/15/2001
Release date: 01/01/2001
Genre: Nonfiction
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