Wednesday, January 26, 2011

BOOK REVIEW! TALES OF THE BIZARRO WORLD (DC Comics 2000)

When I was a pre-teenaged brat I used to get a kick outta the Bizarro featurette that used to be found in the back pages of ADVENTURE comics! After all, their twisted logic and natural bassackwardness would be guaranteed to ooze the guffaws outta any self-respecting comic book nut who had barely made it into the double digits!!! Surprisingly enough, at first I felt that the Bizarros were kinda grotesque to look at and gave me the creeps, but dang it if I didn't just appreciate the entire shebang once the concept of grossness kinda settled into my adolescent mind as something not to be feared but admired and perhaps even EMULATED as any admirer of EC comics or GG Allin is willing to concede.

Passed up on this 2000 collection of prime Silver Age stories when it first came out, though the thought of eventually snatching up a copy was dangling in the back of my own bizarro mind for quite a long time. And after all these years I finally got it, and wouldn't ya know it but these classic early-sixties vintage sagas are a great read guaranteed to rush all of those glorious old memories of a lazy kid-dom back to you in one felt swoop! Yes, once again osmose these off-kilter stories about the imperfect duplicates of Superman, Lois Lane and the rest of the denizens of the cubed planet where everything is turned topsy-turvy from Earthen tastes and ideals. With their cracked faces and inverted thinking these imperfect copies of the Superman Family will keep your attention held even longer'n when you were reading these for the first time and it was like all part of a typical kid upbringing along with violin lessons and onanism.

It's always a hoot seeing how the writers are gonna use twisto-logic in these stories without them getting too far out into the realm of disgust. Fortunately everything is kept within the bounds of the Comics Code as the Bizarros practice their strange credo strictly for laffs as they act out of disgust for reasons of love, or create chaos as their own idea of order. My fave of the batch has to be the one where the Bizarros celebrate Halloween by masquerading as Mickey Mantle, John Kennedy, Marilyn Monroe and Jerry Lewis while engaging in mischievous pranks like repairing roofs and forcing the Bizarro Krypto the Superdog to eat cooked weenies! And forget about the Bizarro World, in some perhaps not-so-strange way I would find JFK and Jerry Lewis masks frightening here on Earth!

Of course I could get on that old rift about how the Bizarro world pictured in those early-sixties stories has in fact manifested itself smack dab into the year 2011...like "In the Bizarro world dull, boring, peaceful, unexciting music is considered rock & roll!" Or "In the Bizarro world, Katie Couric is thought of as a highly skilled, talented news presenter", but I won't. Whatever, it is extremely fortunate that the writers didn't take the whole Bizarro notion and run whole hog with it into the realms of tastelessness, like perhaps mention that after defecating, Bizarros don't wipe or maybe they do with rough sandpaper or even yet wipe before doing the dump! (I'll leave the references to the olfactory nature of the act out of it for now.) Sheesh, they could do wonders with menstruation and menopause references galore. Don't worry, if they ever do decide to bring back the Bizarro series they're gonna put all of that stuff in! But don't fret yet because I doubt they'll ever revive the Bizarros...I mean, with real life the way it is who needs a comic book?

2 comments:

Serena WmS. Burroughs said...

Speaking of Bizarro updates (and leaving Nick Nicholas out of the equation), there were two books of newly created Bizarro stories out in the Noughts: "Bizarro Comics" (2001) and "Bizarro World" (2005).

Christopher said...

I have the feeling that the predictions mentioned in the final paragraph have come true!