I’m a fan of artist/writer/animator KC Green. After ending his brilliant Gunshow comic (samples of which you have almost certainly seen whether you know it or not), KC launched three new comics. Back is a surreal fairy tale done in collaboration with Anthony Clark, Pinocchio is a faithful retelling of Carlo Collodi’s original story, and He is a Good Boy… well, HIAGB is hard to describe.
Imagine if your late 20’s / early-30’s millennial worries about your bad job, worse prospects, miserable apartment and constant anxiety were compressed into a surly, selfish, painfully self-aware alcoholic avatar… who is also an acorn. That’s Crange, protagonist of HIAGB and “the last acorn to leave his tree”.
Crange faces many challenges in the comic’s episodic vignettes – the violent death of his home, abduction by a serial killer spider who turns his victims into pretentious works of art, and forced participation in an armed robbery by a gang of sentient rocks, to name a few – and he steadfastly refuses to learn from any of it. He’s terrible, but he’s good enough to feel bad about being terrible, and therein lies the opportunity for weird, gross, strangely profound lessons.
In the current episode, which began last week, Crange is on a collision course with a werewolf. Five pages in, there’s already been one gory death, an introduction to the werewolf character, and plenty of increasingly ludicrous speculations by Crange on the fringe benefits of lycanthropy. Even ignoring the werewolf thing, stories like this are why I adore KC’s work and HIAGB in particular. If you can’t find parallels between situations in your own life and Crange’s unfounded rationalizations in the face of terror, you’re probably a dead tree, or a sentient rock.