We are big fans of Rocko’s Modern Life because of how disturbing it could be, but also how on the nose it could be about social mores. BOOM! Studios is putting out the first issue in a new comic series this week and boy does it capture the nostalgia of the 90’s.
So what’s it about?
The official summary reads:
Ryan Ferrier (Regular Show) and Ian McGinty (
Adventure Time) continue BOOM! Studios’ partnership with Nickelodeon with all-new stories about everyone’s favorite wallaby! When Rocko faces unemployment, a terrible living situation, and increasingly slim job prospects, he is forced to find out just how far he is willing to go to get a job. Includes a bonus short story by KC Green where Ed Bighead finds himself in the dentist chair of Dr. Hutchison!
Why does this matter?
Ferrier and McGinty are two very good creators so we know we’re in good hands. This comic is also jam-packed with humor and a fast pace that should keep kids and adults entertained.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
A day job is tough folks!
I’m incredibly impressed with Ian McGinty’s ability to capture the chaotic and beautiful lines of the Rocko show. Dare I say this comic looks better than the show, in part because it’s not animated, but also because it’s able to layer panels in interesting ways to draw your eye around the page. There’s a Picasso level of weirdness to the world (and a moment where Rocko loses his temper and literally becomes Picasso-like) as it is and McGinty nails it.
The story in this issue helps set the stage for the plethora of characters in Rocko’s life. That includes his friends, neighbor, and dog who help or hinder his life in varying ways. This issue does a great job recapping how Rocko’s luck is quite bad from his troubles at work to, in this issue, the troubles of a new roommate. Money (or lack thereof) has been a reoccurring issue for Rocko in the show and it goes in a unique way with his sloth roommate. Ferrier increases the pressure on Rocko as the story progresses to the point where he makes bad choices and suffers for it. That’s the treasure trove of the humor in this series and this debut issue nails it. There are a good amount of visual jokes per page too. I was never bored and the plot shifted quite a bit. By the end, I could see another creative team stretching out what is in this issue across three issues and it’s nice to see no compression in the storytelling at all.
The issue closes with a four-page backstory by KC Green about Mr. Bighead going to the dentist. Does this story take me back! This show was so good at doing the opposite as far as good programming for children. Ever hated the dentist growing up? Don’t read this story! Or maybe you should, because it’s scary as heck in a funny way. Seeing Mr. Bighead get put through hell has always been a good source of humor.
I love the bill that says,
It can’t be perfect can it?
With so many happy memories of this show, there’s bound to be something you wanted more of (like the comic shop) and won’t get in this first issue. For me, I just wanted more Heffer and Filbert. They make appearances and are funny here, but aren’t in it as much as I’d have liked. Heffer is great as the stupid friend and he and Filbert only appear for 2 pages.
Is It Good?
This comic captures everything good about the TV show and then some. It’s gross-out humor is on point, the anxiety ridden Rocko is endearing as hell, and his supporting characters are obnoxious in the funniest kind of way. Rocko is back, and BOOM! Studios is giving it to us in comic shops across the nation!