I love The Goon; everything about that book is fun because Eric Powell can write fun stories that are offensive, vulgar, disgusting, horrifying, and just plain awesome. In the land of Dark Horse Comics, The Goon is my King, and Hellboy comes in at a close second. Is my opinion a popular one? No, Hellboy has far more of a following as evidenced by two big budget movies (please give us a third, already!) and a couple of animated films. The Goon hasn’t been given that kind of love yet; there was a movie in the works and they released a trailer that had hooked in by the way they captured the spirit and humor of the books, but not much has been heard from that front after they ran a successful Kickstarter campaign back in 2012. I’m hoping for a big announcement at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con, but in the meantime I have a comic book to review.
Eric Powell’s art in this book is fantastic. If you’ve ever read any of my other reviews you might notice I kind of gloss over my opinions of art, and sometimes I even downright ignore the art; nothing against artists, it’s just that I’m not a very visual person and I feel ill-equipped to comment on something unless it’s either bothers me or appeases me greatly. What Eric Powell and colorist Dave Stewart do on this book blends a dark and bleak settings and creatures with an old-school cartoon feel. These concepts blend seamlessly when, by all means, they just shouldn’t. It makes for a very unique book different from virtually anything else out there. The browns, greys, and greens they use to create the world of The Goon are so aesthetically pleasing I feel compelled to give them my compliments.
Another fantastic thing about The Goon is that it’s one of those books that doesn’t require you to read up on a billion back issues in order to enjoy the story. Yes, there are little nods to past adventures hidden throughout, but a new reader can just pick it up and enjoy it without feeling lost. The last issue of The Goon I bought was the Satan’s Sodomy Baby issue back in 2007 (going to university put a major damper on my ‘$75 on comics a week’ habit), and I still feel like I could jump into the book and feel right at home.
So what’s the story about? Well, Franky and The Goon run into a Navy Sailor who has a bit of a problem. Franky proves to be a lot less than helpful and there’s drinking, fighting, and supernatural shenanigans; if I told you anything else it’d diminish the fun you’ll have reading this book. Go pick it up, seriously.