cover image Bucko


Jeff Parker and Erika Moen. Dark Horse, $19.99 (144p) ISBN 978-1-59582-973-3

Like a slacker Hitchcock hero, Rich awakens in the wrong place at the wrong time, a hookup’s apartment after a drunken night, and rushes ill-prepared to a job interview. It’s all downhill from there, a spiral involving murder, rampaging subcultures, and a mad dash to a wacky finale. Artist Moen’s work is lively, capturing the action of the script perfectly and bringing the characters to energetic life. The story is a clever, careening juggernaut that becomes cluttered by the end. If you’re not familiar with maker culture or Juggalos, or Portland, Ore. in-jokes, you might get lost as the hipster social satire piles on. The story was originally a Web comic, and like many Web comics that go into print, this book includes the author notes on each page—but here they seem more self-conscious micromanagement than revelation, and make the creators seem like they’re trying to steal the limelight from their own cartoon characters, who are strong enough to stand on their own. If readers ignore the notes, the lively, brainy story more than stands on its own. (Oct.)