Comics Review: "Violent Skate Bulldogs"
- by Señor Editor, 24 June 2016
If you don’t know him by now, you will never never never know him. Well, maybe not “never”, since Łukasz Kowalczuk’s popularity seems to be on the rise, but Trash Mutant readers should recognize the name pretty fuckin’ well by now - even if they can’t pronounce it. We’ve written quite a bit about his “SLIME!” and “Vreckless Vrestlers” comics in the past, and this time around we’re taking a look at “Violent Skate Bulldogs”.
There’s quite a bit of world-building here, as Kowalczuk shows us glimpses of what this world is about; of its past, and even of how the Retropolis society is structured. It’s all done very effectively and economically – we don’t get it all in one big info dump, but instead get an idea of everything from various details included along the way. As far as storytelling goes, this is very nicely done.
We only get one brief interruption in the plot (though not an unwelcome one), when the boys are watching a “Rad Erwank” TV show and we get to follow the show for 2 or 3 pages. It’s pretty cool, and I like how it’s incorporated into the main story.
Of course, Kowalczuk is also the artist of “Bulldogs”, and it’s a really stylish comic. It’s black and white, but the art is always very clean and detailed. I particularly like the opening page, showing the layout of Retropolis and giving us a quick tour around the city.
There’s also a really big, complex panel later on in the book, when the Bulldogs are visited by their mentor in their hideout, which is filled with skateboarding ramps and people hanging out there. It's a sequence of events shown on one, single shot of the setting. I love stuff like this:
Fans of Kowalczuk’s other comics will also be happy to see all the other things he’s really good at drawing: bizarre mutants, all kinds of freaks, robots, over the top action and all kinds of pop culture references popping up.
„Violent Skate Bulldogs” is a collection of strips previously released in various magazines, but it tells one coherent story. In fact, the entire thing reads like a first issue of a series. It’s easy to see how it could continue, or even turn into an ongoing series - especially since the ending leaves a lot of room for potential sequels. Kowalczuk has already shown that he is more than capable of writing short, self-contained stories, but so far the only longer narrative of his that I’ve seen is the text-less “Vreckless Vrestlers”. It would be interesting to see what he could do with an ongoing series and “Violent Skate Bulldogs” certainly seem like an idea that could go on for quite a while.
This comic is published by Bloody Gore Comix. I’m not familiar with the publisher at all, but good on them for making VBS happen. You can purchase the book on their website, right here, and I’d say it’s definitely worth giving a go!
So there you have it! Go and pick up “Violent Skate Bulldogs”! Tell them Trash Mutant sent ya.