This is one of those things I wanted to read based on title alone. Avery Fatbottom: Renaissance Fair Detective conjures up, in my mind at least, images of some sort of Brick-like** noir thing. But the name is pretty unapologetically funny.
It ends up on the funny side. Avery is a single issue B&W comic published digitally by Monkeybrain through Comixology. It’s written and drawn by Jen Vaughn (Mermaid Hostel, Cartozia Tales) and priced at $.99 for the issue. The story deals with Avery taking over the running of a renaissance festival from her late parents with the help of her best friend Gwen. The whole issue is sort of a tour of the festival, as Avery deals with problems and goes on a date. The book sticks to a six panel grid and the jokes come pretty often; double entendres, codpiece humor, bawdy songs and a “Pouch of Anachronism”. It functions as a funny intro to all the characters and eccentricities of the world, a place where, Vaughn says; “You have people of various commitment levels attempting to transport you back in time, and hawk their wares on you!”
Vaugnh is a gifted cartoonist, though some pages are better than others. Panels with 3 or more characters tend to suffer a little as Vaughn tries to achieve detail without overcrowding. On the other hand single panel gags come off great and a runaway elephant looks fantastic.
In the end Avery is well worth your time and money. According to an August interview with Vaughn for MTV Geek there are six more issues of Avery set to come out with the 2nd one scheduled to release during SPX, which has come and gone. Hopefully the delay is short and I’ll get to read more Avery Fatbottom soon.
**Brick is Looper director Rian Johnson’s first film. It’s a noir set in a modern high school with stylized dialogue and character types pulled from 30’s-40’s thrillers. It stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt and is awesome.