Dollar Comic Review: Olive Us Birthday Issue
So here's the three worst things I've seen and heard today.
1. Guy calls up to the store and talks to Matt. He wants to sell us some comics, and brother, as he says: "I've got somethin' even more valuable than a #1, man. I've got a #0!"
2. So I'm in the gas station this morning to get some Red Bull because I had one two days ago and didn't get to sleep until four in the morning last night, and I see it. A pair of official camouflage Larry the Cable Guy panties with "Git-R-Done" emblazoned on the crotch in huge white letters.
The package was laying on the floor, so I can only assume some curious bastard picked them up and then dropped them when the sheer Lovecraftian horror of what he saw overwhelmed his fragile mind.
3. Olive Us Birthday Issue. Quite possibly the worst comic book I've ever seen.
Click to Wretched-Size it!
"Olive Us: Birthday Issue"
Writer: Cary Michael Lucier
Pencils and Cover: Monte Scott
I've worked back issues at the shop for almost three years now, and I've seen a lot of bad comics. But this one might just be the worst thing I've ever read, and that includes a run of Evil Ernie. But out of all that, it's the only one so godawful that I feel bad for making fun of it. I mean, I've been a guy who gets together with a pal to make a crappy mini-comic, so I can really identify with these guys.
Unfortunately, it's still the most wretched thing to be printed in four colors, and I have a duty to the truth.
I feel it's important to mention that this one isn't just a crappy comic book, it's also got a crappy gimmick attatched to it. It's actually a greeting card! The idea is that you buy it and give it to some unsuspecting cretin who reads through 26 pages to get to a page that says: "Happy Birthday from Olive Us!" Yes. It's also a pun. That's what we call "strike three."
And like so many of the fine products reviewed here on the ISB, it's Canadian.
The Cover: Just to prove that I'm not a complete bastard, I will say this: I actually do like the logo. The rest of it.. Sheesh. Just look at it and tell me it looks like it's from 2004 and not 1993.
The Plot: Olive Us, an allegedly attractive young woman with freckles that look more like those things Brainiac 5 used to have on his forehead, is woken up by her pet alien (?) Oggy, who tells her to go fight some renegade birthday clowns. So she puts on a suit of "intelligent liquid metal" that lets her turn her finger into a knife and her legs into a weird, sub-jetsons hovercraft she calls a "light-rider."
Oggy, a genuinely creepy little bastard, drools for a little while over Olive's ass--which is framed with "wiggle lines"--then sends her out into the terrifying world of the future. You can tell it's the future because there are lasers, and the moon has a big crack in it. So Olive runs and jumps and arches her back in a nigh-Liefeldian attempt at sexuality.
Then she fights some clowns.
For like sixteen pages.
But it all works out okay when Oggy appears to use an energy pulse to give her an orgasm to kill the head clown. Somehow. I think. Then she finds a gold future-suitcase that contains a birthday cake. Then you sign it and give it to someone you never want to be friends with again.
Defining Moment: The defining moment of this one doesn't actually come in the issue, but in the material packaged with it. There's a flyer in there to advertise it (we got this monstrosity as a promo) that's just a joy to read. The front is a full-color photo of the Olive Us display box surrounded by word balloons from off panel that say:
"Comic book greeting cards are awesome!"
"They take the place of 'Greeting Cards' and 'Gifts' all by themselves!"
"And I can sell this BIRTHDAY ISSUE on my checkout counter in it's [sic] cool display stand for an entire year!"
And my personal favorite: "A brand 'New' Comic Book Format that is sure to 'Increase Sales' and create a "buzzzzz!"
Sure to "Increase Sales" indeed. The back of the flyer is all text, and has--I swear to God--instructions on how to use the comic. Here are some gems:
"Our line of 'COMIC BOOK GREETING CARDS'™ uses our female superhero's name, 'Olive Us'™, to mimic the words 'All of Us'."
Yes. They explain it. Because mere mortals such as we couldn't be expected to grasp the concept. But it gets better:
"We also set aside a specific area of the final page for the signatures of the group of people intending to present the item. The word 'Signatures' has been added so that everyone knows where they should sign the item."
My emphasis there. Pretty self-explanatory, which is a word I'm fairly sure these cats have never heard. And it goes on like this for the entire page, talking about how this issue's sure to be a collector's item.
Somehow, they forget to mention that this might be the stupidest idea I've ever heard. I think I speak for the entire comic book reading public when I say that we'd much rather just get a regular comic with a character we like. Heck, you can even bag it up and sign the board. Just not on the shiny side.