TITLE: Comic Book Spotlight: Pussey! TPB
YEAR: July 1995
COMPANY: Fantagraphics Books
By Daniel Clowes
When it comes to alternative comics success, Daniel Clowes has seen his stories such as “Ghost World” (2001) adapted into a film, and “Art School Confidential” (2006).
These stories were among the many stories that were featured in his solo anthology comic book series “Eightball” which was published by Fantagraphic Books.
One of the titles that graced “Eightball” was “Pussey!” following the life of comic book artist, Dan Pussey and literally a scathing fictional account of the comic book industry and for those who have read or in the know of the screw jobs that have happened in the comic book industry, well know the characters that Clowes received inspiration for this story.
“Pussey!” begins with a man known as Doctor Infinity of the Infinity Comics Group creating a group of young talented pencilers, inkers, letterers and writers, and one of the pencilers is Dan Pussey.
Doctor Infinity is strict with the group and has them working around the clock, with everyone just assuming they will be paid.
And when the young talent tries to say something, Doctor Infinity is quick to name drop of talented artists he worked with that cranked pages like crazy and never complained.
And the behind-the-doors deals that were made at comic conventions to literally make these young talents household names in the comic industry.
But as these talents are not being paid, Dan gets enticed by his teacher to try other comic books and while he does it for his crush for his female teacher, in truth, all Dan Pussey knows is superheroes.
And the book goes through Dan going through various jobs and interacting with fellow comic book fans but also seeing how Doctor Infinity was with his fellow artists, especially inkers back in the day. How he was egotistical and wanting to put his name on everything and the challenges when anyone brought up creator-owned property.
But how the lives worked out for a lot of these people from when they were young and when they got older.
And I’ll just leave it at that as this is a comic book that needs to be read because it’s so enjoyable and really, it’s a scathing portrayal of what took place in the comic book industry. Sure, a lot of situations were exaggerated and the story is fictional, but there is no doubt that certain things happened and without naming anyone, just reading the “Pussey!”, you get a sense of who Daniel Clowes is writing about.
Overall, “Pussey!” is a fantastic, satirical look at the comic book industry and fandom. Highly recommended!