My Favorite Things

Fightin' Fun Comics starring the Mighty Boys #1-2

Fightin' Fun Comics #1 cover

by Cliff Craven, Susan Ensor, Ken Picklesimer Jr., Ray Alan Matthews, Sarah Rinear, Rob Socha, Matt Clement (#2), Nate Dray (#1), Frank Schullo (#2), Matt Trahan (#2) & Morte Treehorn (#1)

Their heroism is legendary! Their patriotism unquestionable! They are -- Astronaut Urine Gorilla! Biblica! The Buck-Toothed Ghost! Lightning Fish! Sick Pigeon! Sock Sorcerer! Spatula! They are -- the Mighty Boys! And they defend, erm, well, themselves, mostly, from threats they've created as a result of their terrible negligence!

Sometimes personal preference has nothing to do with quality. Case in point: the two issues of Fightin' Fun Comics in my collection are some of the most slapdash, crudely-drawn comics I own. And yet, about once a year I crack them open and laugh for about two solid hours.

Thrown together and self-published by some friends from the suburbs of Cleveland, Fightin' Fun Comics is essentially a book teaming up every doofy superhero they could think of against every doofy supervillain they could think of. Each issues is structured up like a Golden Age team-up book — we're introduced to a bewildering variety of heroes, who then split up to tackle different segments of the problem, and then get back together for the big slugfest at the end.

In the first issue, they're tricked by Omnipotent Man, who has been kidnapping historical figures as babies and then replacing them with cicada-men. This is all part of a devious plot so that Omnipotent Man can take revenge on his older self, who keeps using time travel to screw his younger self over. In the second issue, they're ambushed by a team composed of their own cast-offs and sidekicks and must travel through time to learn their origins.

Why do I like these if the art is terribly crude and the stories are silly at best? Well, probably because it's not they're trying to be anything other than silly. And truth be told, the various creators have a real knack for coming up with clever one-note characters and stilted comic book dialogue. It's like reading a comic drawn by an exceptionally clever 12-year-old on notebook paper. If said 12-year-old was actually 20-something and was making jokes about boobs and using curse words.

Plus, if you can't be amused by the sight of Eli Whitney, replaced by a cicada-man at birth and raised by an omnipotent supervillain to be a monstrous creature made out of cotton, well, then you probably can't be amused by anything.

In closing, here's my favorite joke...

Fightin' Fun Comics #2 p. 32

Fightin' Fun Comics #2, p. 32

For some reason, that caption cracks me up every time.

Comments (1)

  1. Wred Fright (07/28/2009)

    I'm glad to see that someone still enjoys these comics. I wrote the Astronaut Urine Gorilla solo story in #2. #3 was partially done when Cliff Craven died unexpectedly, and that sort of put a halt to everything (which was already moving pretty slow anyway). Maybe someday the gang will finish it, but for now you can read a prose version of the second Astronaut Urine Gorilla story at http://undergroundliteraryalliance.blogspot.com/2004/05/stolen-from-mountains-of-africa-and.html (please ignore the fact that about half the quotation marks are represented by black lines--I'm not quite sure what formatting went awry there, but as I'm not involved with that blog any longer I can't fix it).

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