Sunday, November 2, 2014
OI VEY! A review of new Aussie comic "Oi! Oi! Oi" #1&2
CONGRATS to Aussie anthology OI OI OI! to getting its second issue onto local newsstands, a rare feat for any comic - let alone an Australian title - in 2014.
My question is: WHO THE FUG IS BUYING IT...apart from me, that is?
Oi Oi Oi! - a terrible name for a comic, by the way - is published by ComicOz, the imprint of Queenslander Nat Karmichael, who's also published classic collections of John Dixon's Air Hawk and Monty Wedd's Ned Kelly newspaper strips.
There's certainly nothing wrong with the anthology's intent: to showcase the best Aussie talent around... Of course, quality is subjective and I've found both issues uneven.
Oi Oi Oi! #1 (published in June) had strong contributions from Tony Thorne, Glen Le Lievre and Dillon Naylor, plus a fine cover from MAD artist Anton Emdin.
Other efforts are not so good, most notably a monster/sci-fi yarn by SCAR Studios (Steve Carter and Antoinette Rydyr). These guys have been pumping out the same sexually violent gore for 30 years without a hint of irony or growth .
I thought their contribution was inappropriate for a newsstand magazine situated next to more kid-friendly comics such as Scooby-Doo and The Simpsons. They also made Oi Oi Oi! look dated. SCAR's piece is easily the weakest thing in the first issue.
Oi Oi Oi! #2 (on sale now) is an improvement over the first issue. Having an all-women's issue is a welcome touch, while the addition of some colour pages helps make Caitlin Major and Scarlette Baccini's stories the strongest contributions. Again, the overall quality is patchy and, without wanting to sound too prudish, I question the amount of nudity and sex featured in a comic that's being sold in the children's section of newsagencies. Also, $7.95 seems a steep price for an indie B&W Aussie anthology comic. You'd be hard-pressed to get comics geeks paying that much at their local comic shop, let alone parents forking it over for their kids at a newssstand.
In summary, Oi Oi Oi! is a noble effort and worthy of your support.
But are noble efforts enough in 2014 to get people's support? I don't think so.