Simpsons Comics #186

A comic review article by: Ray Tate


Bart finds Sideshow Bob in an alley experiencing the high life of a hobo.

Skid-Row Slasher

The situation becomes curiouser when Bart discovers that Bob has made friends with slumming millionaire Chester Lampwick, the creator of Itchy and Scratchy. Is this collusion merely a coincidence, or does Bob have murder in mind? I'll give you a hint.

Glint in His Eyes

You see? He's absolutely innocent. Until proven guilty, that is.

Ian Boothby concocts a plot worthy of Sideshow Bob's machinations. John Delaney and Andrew Pepoy craft surreptitious shadows to highlight the usual to a tee Groening model. Is the drama however real or imagined?

Delaney, Pepoy and Villanueva pull out all the stops when Bob takes Bart and Lisa for a ride, and I like how Boothby wraps the A-story and the B-story featuring Lisa's fight to save the library in a neat little bow. 

The B-story is a superb showcase for Lisa's passion and determination. It's also allows Boothby to observe real life obstacles against the library's continued existence. At the same time he mixes in Simpsons specific jokes -- slapstick in the case of Homer J. and sly when referring to the Comic Book Guy's insidious tactics.

I believe public libraries at least will always remain. While computers are ubiquitous, some cannot afford even a basic crappy laptop. Reference books cost money, and the cost of a complete guide to 17th century fashion, for instance, is prohibitive. So long as there are esoteric and unique tomes, the library will remain even as the Internet expands.





Ray Tate's first online work appeared in 1994 for Knotted. He has had a short story, "Spider Without a Web," published in 1995 for the magazine evernight and earned a degree in Biology from the University of Pittsburgh. Since 1995, Ray self-published The Pick of the Brown Bag on various usenet groups, where he reviewed comic books, Doctor Who novels, movies and occasionally music. Circa 2000, he contributed his reviews to Silver Bullet Comic Books (later Comics Bulletin) and became its senior reviewer. Ray Tate would like to think that he's young at heart. Of course, we all know better.


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