Sweatshop

 SWEO   (DC, 2003)

™ and © DC Comics

Sweatshop stars Mel Bowling, a right-wing (in the pejorative sense of the term) cartoonist with a staff of misfits who do all the work for him. (He hasn’t touched the strip in years.)

Like Buddy, Stinky, Lisa, and the rest of the crew from Bagge’s superior Hate series, the characters in Sweatshop are selfish, delusional, paranoid, and quick to anger. This is a potentially funny formula, and no one can draw someone throwing a temper tantrum as well as Bagge. Nevertheless, this issue doesn’t really take off until the final pages, when three of the sweatshop cartoonists illustrate their own renditions of what happened (or their fantasies of what happened) the day the new employee reported for work.

Of the two primary stories, only one is drawn by Bagge. The other is illustrated by Stephen Destefano, who manages to clone Bagge’s rubbery, off-kilter style pretty well. If Bagge ever starts a sweatshop of his own, hiring Destefano would be a no-brainer.

— Brett Weiss

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  NotesWriterArtist

#1

Date: 6/1/2003
Cover Price: $2.95
NM Guide: $1.50
5 copies available from $1.14
 Peter BaggePeter Bagge, Stephen DeStefano, Bill Wray

#2

Date: 7/1/2003
Cover Price: $2.95
NM Guide: $2.00
2 copies available from $1.81
 Peter BaggePeter Bagge, Stephen DeStefano, Bill Wray

#3

Date: 8/1/2003
Cover Price: $2.95
NM Guide: $2.50
5 copies available from $2.04
 Peter BaggePeter Bagge, Stephen DeStafano, Stephanie Gladden, Jim Blanchard

#4

Date: 9/1/2003
Cover Price: $2.95
NM Guide: $1.50
2 copies available from $0.63
 Peter BaggePeter Bagge, J. Ryan, Stephanie Gladden, Jim Blanchard

#5

Date: 10/1/2003
Cover Price: $2.95
NM Guide: $2.75
2 copies available from $2.49
 Peter BaggePeter Bagge

#6

Date: 11/1/2003
Cover Price: $2.95
NM Guide: $1.75
3 copies available from $0.88
Final issuePeter BaggePeter Bagge, Stephanie Gladden, Jim Blanchard, Nick Calimari