Blog Archives

Hart, Tom – She’s Not Into Poetry



She’s Not Into Poetry

Do you ever feel like you’ve wished something into existence? Well, that’s this graphic novel. I’ve been hoping for a collection of all of Tom’s early mini comics basically since a few of them went out of print in the 90’s, and here they are. All the titles are in the tags and sure, I have copies of about 2/3 of them, but that’s still 1/3 that I previously had no access to. And since I have some of the original comics, that means that I have 20 year old belly lint by Tom Hart, because he taped that to two of his minis. Um, yay? Does that mean I can clone him once the technology is perfected? I have to think through the ethical implications of that responsibility. Oh, am I not talking about the comics yet? How about this: these comics were a solid chunk of the reason why I fell in love with small press comics, and the fact that these had mostly disappeared down the memory hole in the early 00’s was a solid chunk of the reason why I started a small press comics review site where books like these could all be lumped together. So yeah, you could say that the guy influenced my life just a bit. Oh, here’s one valid question I could answer with this review: do these comics hold up as more than nostalgia? Yes. Yes, they do. Want specifics? Wodaabe Comics is the earliest (and rawest) and it still made me laugh several times. Love Looks Left, if there is any justice in this world, is being taught in all these various cartoonists schools as the perfect mini comic. Maria mixes some casual background horror with a quiet day with the ducks with an obsessed stalker seemlessly. New Hat and Ramadan are both basically prequel comics for Hutch Owens, even though I’m pretty sure Hutch Owens was done at roughly the same time. Vital supplementary comics, the both of them. This comic does make me miss the days when I could occasionally come across a new Tom Hart mini comic in Quimby’s or Chicago Comics, and it looks like those days are gone for good. But it does fill me with hope to know that a guy with this brain is helping to teach the next generation of cartoonists. Just in case you are the only person on earth who has every single comic here, this volume does contain a new introduction, afterward, and a list of his favorite things/influences/people, then and now. $14.95

Hart, Tom – Love Looks Left


Love Looks Left

If anybody wants to see my idea of the perfect mini comic, this is it.  I’m continuing with my “why, back in my day” series of looking at older books, and yes, it turns out that in some ways things were better back in the day.  Case in point: Tom Hart was still making mini comics.  This is a collection of short pieces over a three year span, and they all have something to offer.  There’s Tom in the future chatting with his child about how ridiculous it was that we all had to work for 40 years before retiring (which is how things are all the time in the future), his B.U.M. fantasy (a line of clothing from back then; kids ask your parents), how he called up a strange woman to his new apartment and ended up with a bald head and some serious inner peace, Tom and Snufkin playing music that turns into flowers (the only piece that didn’t do much for me and it was a short one), Tom shopping with his “kid” and trying to make it the perfect day, Tom as an old homeless man who plays with his dick all day and talks philosophy when he can be bothered to do so, and his fantasy beating of the man who was sleeping with his ex at the time.  All this is wrapped up by his “kid” pleading for his dad to come home to him, that all is forgiven.  Funny and insightful, I might not ever get tired of it if every mini comic I saw was just like this.  Sadly it’s one of those comics that’s out of print, but you can probably find a copy with some digging.  If not, it’s just one more thing to whet your whistle for when you’ll eventually be able to rent things like this from me to read for yourselves…