Before there was Jim Valentino, and before he cofounded Image, the writer/artist was known simply as Valentino, and he enjoyed small-press success in the ‘80s with such Slave Labor Graphics comics as the hit spoof normalman and this spinoff mini-series, Max the Magnificent. Max—a humanoid frog in a cheap suit with attitude and arrogance to spare—is a TV talk-show host who will gladly insult the Queen herself in the name of ratings. A man (amphibian?) with such a disposition makes a lot of enemies, and it isn’t long before Max and his lovely sidekick/protector are on the run from a host of them. Of course, with several normalman regulars on the scene, can Captain Everything be far behind?Valentino’s art style is simple yet effective in this black-and-white tale, and his wit and sense of satire are razor sharp. The mood is irreverent and the pacing really jumps.