Just because I’m a fan of an animated T.V. show doesn’t always mean I’ll want to read the comic but with Bob’s Burgers Volume 1 (Dynamite) by the writers and artists/ animators of the show, overseen by its creator Loren Bouchard, I’m now a fan of both the television and comic book versions. For me the show always ends too soon but this collected edition of the first five issues gave me plenty to chew, along with palate-cleansing interludes of pin-up art in various styles by different artists. Want to see a portrait of Bob in the style of Van Gogh? It’s here. The whole family in stained glass? Yes, like in a church. It’s here, too.
With this edition you get several installments of Tina’s Erotic Friend Fiction in genres from sci-fi to Western, to zombies. Is “zombies” a genre? I hesitate to say horror because it’s too funny. Tina’s butt-obsession is in full play throughout her stories so as you can imagine, Jimmy Pesto, Jr. figures quite prominently. Gene’s musical theatre endeavors play out in rhyme, with farts aplenty. Louise’s sections feature her wreaking havoc at school and at home, and solving mysteries in her hard-charging, get-outta-my-way style. I especially like the outcome of her sleuthing in the library book vandalism case! In one instance she doesn’t quite solve the mystery involving a member of a boy band group but I’m very intrigued and hope this will be addressed in the future (where are you, Boo?).
We don’t see a whole lot of Bob and Linda in this volume, but what we do see is quite interesting. I love Linda’s way of talking (her syntax and diction) so I enjoyed being treated to her letters to (mostly) corporate recipients with ideas for inventions, new perfumes and tips on wine-drinking for busy moms. From Bob there are burger-of-the-day idea lists, fresh from the kitchen on ruled, grease-stained paper. The cleverly-named daily burger special is a running motif on the show that gets a more satisfying treatment here, some even with illustrations. Coming up with these is Bob’s thing–he’s really good at it and when I read them they make me hungry.
I love the very distinctive voices on the television version and that’s the only thing missing from the comic book, but since I’ve watched the show since the get-go, the voices are recorded in my mind and play as I’m reading. If you haven’t really watched the show and you’re new to this fabulously quirky universe located in a sea-side town populated with characters from the cranky and eccentric to the delusional yet hilarious, well, the most fun is in watching Bob, Linda and the kids interact with them.
I’m a fan of the drawing and the way the characters look, both on the show and in the comic. Even some of the more initially outlandish-looking side characters tend to remind me of folks I’ve known or seen. As for my favorite supporting character, in the future I’d like to see more of Tina’s and Jimmy Jr.’s classmate, Zeke, who, like Nelson in The Simpsons has gone from being a quasi-bully and sidekick for Jimmy, Jr. to a more full-fledged character on the show. With his modified mullet hairstyle and Southern accent, he has a surprising knack for cooking and a fondness for older women. In the future I’ll be on the look-out for more of Zeke and definitely more about Louise’s search for her boy-band member crush—yes, Louise has a crush!
Story: Mike Olsen, Jeff Drake, Rachel Hastings, Justin Hook, Chad Brewster
Art: Brad Rader, Tony Gennero, Frank Forte, Bernard Derriman, Robin Brigstocke, Damon Wong, Kat Kosmala, Cecilia Aranovich, Kyung Shin, Marcelo Benavides, Ken Laramay, Paul Claerhout, Ryan Mattos, Steve Umbelby
Story: 9.5 Art: 9.7 Overall: 9.8
Dynamite Entertainment provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review.