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History In Ruins #1
posted July 15, 2013

imageCreators: Rusty Jordan, Andrew Smith
Publishing Information: Self-Published, mini-comic, 12 pages, no price
Ordering Numbers: Maybe track this one down through Jordan's Twitter account?

This is a very thin mini-comic done in an energetic style that features a thick, sometimes even lovely line about a loser quitting work, stealing things and going home. I may have received the second issue along with this one, but if I did they were separated. This may be important, because by itself, just this first issue? There's not much to it. We may be harder on something like History In Ruins #1 for the barrage of smaller mini-comics from Oily Comics that make more effective use of a similar canvas. I do like the general bounce of the cartooning here, though, how the shapes kind of fall together in certain sequences and the way the figures extend limbs forwards or back to emphasize movement. This wouldn't have been out of place as the back-up feature in a late-period underground comic. It made for a fine eight seconds spent. If I had to rustle up a specific complain it would be targeted at how ruthlessly the story falls into standard patterns. Despite an entire range of behaviors possible for these characters, no one does anything that surprises, and it's hard to hold out hope that anyone eventually will. History In Ruins' most promising feature is its pacing: surprisingly torpid in some places, sped up and out of control in others. That and the look of it aren't enough to make me want to return, or, really, keep this book in my memory for more than the next few minutes. I wouldn't be surprised if there are some fun comics to be had from the creators. This wasn't substantial enough to count.