The last issue of Hate. I really hate to see this one end. (No pun intended.) For the past eight or nine years, this has been a comic that, beyond the misgivings of its title, has given me with hope that comic books could be more than their perceived juvenile nature, and provide the reader with adult themes and provide rare glimpses into realities. Alas, another artist decides to withdraw his artwork while it’s at its peak and his audience is still clambering for more.
Without giving away any surprises, Bagge wraps up all the major plot lines of the characters that have come to define Hate. (Minus Stinky and Pops Bradley, who died in recent issues.) And despite the angst and cynicism that permeated Hate through its thirty issue run, Bagge closes the book on Buddy, Lisa, Butch, George an’ Val’ on what could best be described as a positive note. (I was sure Bagge was gonna kill Buddy off since ’bout issue 15.)
The last few issues have taken on a more magazine format — a host of contributing writers and artists and stories set aside from what’s been known as the “Buddy Bradley” saga. Issue thirty is definitely no exception. Just when Bagge gave all these people a platform, now he’s gonna take it away!? Fantagraphics is also taking advantage of the distinction of this issue by inserting a catalog, providing the novice with a sneak peek into the world of alternative comics.
I’m gonna really miss picking up my Hate subscription. It served as one of my indulgences that pretty much got me through the last coupla years of college. But fear not, word is MTV’s gonna be turning this not so comical comic into a running animated series. It’s gonna be interesting to see how they pull that one off, considering the controversial nature of most Hate themes. Bye-bye Buddy Bradley!! Fantagraphics Books, 7563 Lake City Way N.E., Seattle, WA 98115