Posted: Tuesday, May 13, 2003
By: Darren Schroeder

Cover of Escape Creator(s): Lots
Publishers: FlatFly Media
From: Australia
Price: $20.00 (AU)

Australia is a big country, so it is to be expected that some of there small press books are kind of large. This is one of those gigantic books, possibly the largest that I've been sent. Sure, lots of comics are A4 format, but this is square bound and one hundred pages. The common theme of the collection is the title: escape. The exact nature of the connection in some of the stories is hard to pin down, but I'll keep trying.

Escape from Josh by Alex Major
A very self-referencial and surreal piece which involves a bunch of cartoon characters talking about something. I couldn't quite follow it, things zip all over the place with jokes, gags and sudden changes of location.

The Blue Avenger by Peter Jetnikoff
A neat piece of comic nostalgia that follows a young boy who dreams up adventures as a masked hero in 40's Australia in an attempt to avoid the bits of life that can hurt.

... by Zeldz Magnoonis
A plane chase accompanies some stunt skateboarding and a conversation. The artwork and the way the strands of narrations are eye popping, though the lettering is far too experimental for its own good.

Shallow Plot by Daniel McKeown
A cunningly thought out piece of writing which that crime pays for the crooks, not for the innocent victims. I'll never work in undertaking. Ever!

Balance in All Things by Talitha Nenveiller
The world has been taken over by giant flying sea horses from the stars. Those few humans who remain have to live in fear for their lives. Talitha's drawing style is dramatic, with very solid line work and an abundance of patterning and textures that add to the freaky nature of the plot.

Fear of Heights by Bobby Nenadovic
In this very funny story a bull being taken across Sydney Harbour bridge decides he really wants a T-shirt. Mayhem ensues.

The Dead are Only Dead When they are Dead by Aaron Burgess
A guy and a gal deliver cadavers for a living. While on the job strange noises start emanating from the back of their van and they start to get nervous.

As a sampler of what the Australian comic community is up to, this suggests they are doing very well thank you very much. The production values are top notch and do justice to all the contributors, with a simple but striking cover design and crisp interior layout. All the stories here are well worth your time and money. Catch it now before it ....gets away.

In a Word: Considerable.

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