by Serena Valentino and Ted Naifeh
Slave Labor Graphics
Untraditionally somber, Gloomcookie walks the darker halls of Slave Labor Graphics, which is better known for the whimsical Lenore , the twisted Johnny the Homicidal Maniac , and America’s favorite dairy products gone bad, Milk and Cheese .
As promised, Gloomcookie is a tale of “unrequited love, night clubs, social treachery and monsters under the bed.” Issue #1 is the de rigueur “introduction” issue, where we meet Lex, a pixy-cute goth who “had big doe eyes with long dark lashes that she could bat better than anyone.” Lex is fixated on the socially inept scarecrow, Max, who is all swoony for Isabella, the reigning Goth-Bitch Queen (who bears an uncanny resemblance to Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty ), who in turn doesn’t like anyone. A true nasty, Isabella has been the main orchestrator behind more than a few shady plots. You may be tempted to keep reading this solely to find out if she gets her comeuppance.
Immune to Isabella’s machinations are Chrys and Sebastian, although Sebastian does believe Isabella to be a monster. He’s had experience with the species before: he has an honest to goodness monster under his own bed! Not a “good” monster in the least, this beastie gobbles up Sebastian’s girlfriends! That is, until Chrys pays him a visit.
While the writing is a bit awkward at times, and the art a bit rough, Gloomcookie’s unobtrusive style is pleasing and refreshing. There are some neat frames where a character’s “portrait” is “framed,” the monster under Sebastian’s bed is deliciously decadent, and there are a couple of “Easter eggs” as well (just what is Chrys wearing in the final story?). Gloomcookie is quite a tasty treat indeed.
Help Serena and Ted quit their day jobs by ordering Gloomcookie . http://www.gloomcookie.com
Slave Labor Graphics, 325 S First Street #301, San Jose, CA 95113