Publisher: Dynamite Comics
Writers: Rachel Hastings, Mike Olsen, Justin Hook, Jeff Drake
Artists: Frank Forte, Brad Rader, Bernard Derriman, Tony Gennaro, Liza Epps, Tyler Garrison, Kimball Shirley, Anthony Aguinaldo, Hector Reynoso
Release Date: 27th August 2014
As a massive fan of the show, I naturally leapt at the chance to review the first issue Dynamite Comics’ new Bob’s Burgers series. However, I should clarify that my leap was performed with no small amount of trepidation. The show itself can admittedly be a little ‘hit or miss’, even from the point of view of a fan like myself, and I was initially concerned that its offbeat humour wouldn’t necessarily translate well to the printed page. Well, as it turns out, my initial fears were wholly justified, as – in spite of utilising the same creative team responsible for the show itself – this issue just doesn’t feel right, and instead comes across as a bit of an unfocused mish-mash of ideas that doesn’t even come close to capturing the appeal of the FOX TV show.
The issue is broken up into three smaller stories, each focusing on one of Bob’s children – the unquestioned stars of the show. Eldest daughter Tina is the focus of the first story, a fairly nonsensical tale of “erotic friend fiction” where Tina imagines herself as a magical horse. While serving as a perfect example of the somewhat unusual sense of humour that typifies the show, it does suffer somewhat from a distinct lack of laughs. Aside from a brief stammer as Tina tries to come up with a ‘hero’ name, there’s really not much to get too excited about here, and as an opening chapter, it does kind of set the tone for what’s to come.
The second, and definitely most promising story centers around Louise, who is quite possibly the overall highlight of the TV show. However, despite its interesting premise and chuckle-worthy conclusion, it’s still essentially six pages of set-up for a single one-line gag, and in that respect I probably would have expected a bit more of a payoff at the end.
The final chapter, a “musical” story featuring Gene becoming trapped inside the Burger Suit and falling into a deep depression as a result is another genuinely amusing idea that, sadly, doesn’t gain any real traction. Of the three stories, this is perhaps the one that would work best on the show itself, but the very notion of having a singing, rhyming “episode” on the printed page doesn’t really work. Again, the artwork is solid – as you’d expect – but the execution falls a little flat, in spite of one or two humorous lines along the way.
While I found myself desperately wanting to enjoy this comic the same way love the show, there simply wasn’t much here for me to get excited about. Sure, it had its occasional moments, but for the most part, this issue serves as a stark warning about the fact that just because something is fun on the TV screen, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to work as a comic. Which is a real shame.
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The writer of this piece was: Craig Neilson (aka Ceej)
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