Tales From the Pimp

    (Digital Pimp, 2003)
ô and © Digital Pimp Comics

On the final page of #0, Chanís editorial makes it clear that this series is not about pimps, prostitutes, and cheap hotels. Which isnít necessary, since the bookís content already makes that clear. What isnít clear is just this issue is inspired by E.C.ís Tales from the Crypt, which Chan cites as the comic book that this title pays homage to. Aside from the fact that the issue is an anthology, there really isnít much inside thatís deserving of comparison.

ďAt the MoviesĒ is a labored attempt at humor featuring the college gang from Chan and Dunnís online Matriculated strip. An autobiographical tale from Chanís early college days is a bit funnier, but just when the reader is ready to peg this as a humor comic, Chan and Dunn serve up a misplaced stab at drama, a prison-buddy story that fails to deliver any kind of emotion or tension.

The pimp who told these three tales should be busted.

Issue #1, however, is a much-improved effort that holds truer to Chanís claim of what he intends the series to be. The first two tales, ďDecisionsĒ and ďThe Artifact,Ē are excellent yarns that bring forth that kind of Serling-esque irony thatís often imitated but not truly re-created by many writers. And ďThe 5th ManĒ is another humor story from Chanís college years, when he and his three friends faced a deeply disturbing dilemma: what to do with the underwear left on the floor by the groupís newest roommate. Horrors.

One can only hope that this newer issue will be the template for future ones. If so, itís unfortunate that Chan and Dunn chose to kick off the series with such an atypical effort. Issue #0 should be given the big pass, but those who havenít experienced Chanís frequent wit and Dunnís diverse art styles are cheating themselves if they donít seek out #1.

ó Jim Johnson

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 Phillip Chan, Joe DunnPhillip Chan, Joe Dunn

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