Home > CR Reviews
Habitual Entertainment Issues 1-2
posted February 20, 2006
Mini-Comic, The Handicraft Guild, 24/32 pages, $3 ppd each
When I first opened the second volume of Will Dinski's Habitual Entertainment
and scan-read a pair of pages, I thought I had stumbled into some new work by Pete Sickman-Garner. Dinski and Sickman-Garner share an affection for squat cartoon figure drawing marked by grotesque facial features, and both write stories that are set in the squalid part of the urban experience, featuring over-educated people who either don't care or who are protective of their limited and ridiculous turf, beset by a limited number of absurdities. In issue #1, workers plot against the minimally obnoxious son of the employer with all the serious of the Shirley Jackson All-Stars; in issue #2, an out-of-work actors turns a temp-job opportunity into a piece of street theater. The second one in particular offers a clever plot, and is able to play that clever idea off against the lunacy of following it through, the proud but pathetic life it exposes when it goes off. These aren't big, wild ideas; they're measured, and therefore the execution needs to be pitch-perfect. It's not. Dinski's art needs to improve greatly to give him greater visual effects with which to work. Right now everything depends on story and narrative, and in some ways Dinski could be just as successful staging his plays with paper cups. I like the measured staging, though, the commitment to developing a single idea, and will look forward to see how the comic develops.