Comic book tales already expect readers to suspend disbelief in order to enjoy the story. The Weekly World News does the same thing, but it does it in a way to create some laughs for those that are in the know, and foster hysteria in those that believe.  When IDW Publishing combines comics and the Weekly World News, something insane is going to happen.

WeeklyWorldNnews02_COVER.jpgWeekly World News #2
Writer: Chris Ryall
Artist: Alan Robinson
Colors: Tom Smith
Letters: Robbie Robbins
Cover: Alan Robinson (A), Thom Zahler (B)
Publisher: IDW Publishing

That insanity is of course Ed Anger.  The character comes so far from the extreme right that it comes as no surprise that he hates freaks, aliens, and foreigners, but loves mother, god, and country.  In this issue, Ed’s anger finally boils over as he appoints himself as the only person who can rid the country of those ruining the good ol’ U.S. of A.

While Ed’s character is played up for laughs, there are sure to be a large contingent who see something like this as an attack by the liberal media on all things holy.  Those people need to lighten up, and see this story for what it is – a satire on bigotry in general.  It plays out perfectly in this issue as Ed travels to Florida looking for the alligator man, whom he believes to be an illegal alien no better than Bat Boy.  He hopes to expose the freak for what he is, only to discover Gatorman is just as red blooded as Ed.  The two share some Billy Beer, have a couple of laughs, and generally seem to come to terms with one another, only to have it all dashed moments later when Ed makes a crack about Jimmy Carter and his liberal ways.

Book-ending this character moment is Ed’s continued beliefs that Bat Boy is out to get him, and the revelation that a demon storm (one of WWN’s famous segments) is leaving a path of death and destruction as it moves towards Ed’s location. As the threat from all sides becomes more intense, Ed comes to one conclusion, create a smear campaign to discredit all the crazies.

The writing by Chris Ryall is solid.  There are a few moments where the story jumps, making location changes and jarring, and readers will once again need to bone up on their Weekly World News history to get all the references.

The art by Alan Robinson is well done. I like his cartoony style that has enough detail to make all of the characters created in the check-out aisle magazine easily recognizable.  Panel layout allows the story to flow from page to page, and there are no moments where one could get lost in this story.  Readers will need to pay close attention to the backgrounds in all the panels, as they are packed with references, guest appearances, and just plain craziness.  There’s a portion of the story that takes place on a plane that is a spoof of Terror at 30,000 Feet episode, and it works wonderfully well in depicting Ed’s state of mind (and possible drunkenness).

I have a feeling this issue will only fan the flames of those who are already in a twist over the Captain America and upcoming Boom! Studios titles.  So, if you are someone who is easily offended when someone pokes fun at your belief system, then you’ll want to avoid this issue at all costs.  It will just have you up fuming all night, and that won’t be good for the ulcer.  One the other hand, if you can laugh at yourself or the situation, or if you just love the over the top antics of Ed Anger, then this issue is a fun read.  This isn’t a ground breaking issue, but it does move the story and Ed’s motives along nicely, earning the issue 3.5 out of 5 Stars.

Rating: ★★★½☆


About Author

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment. You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...

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