Mr. Puffinopolus #2
Written and Drawn by Christopher Petty
Inked by Cassandra Hall
Lettering by Peter Simeti
Cover Price: $3
Vordrex, Satan’s right-hand man, has been sent to Earth to begin the reaping of children’s souls. The kicker — he’s been sent in the form of a teddy bear and is now in possession of youngin’ Davey. Vordrex, who has been named Mr. Puffinopolus by his new owner, sets right to work in an attempt to win Davey’s soul when he tricks Davey into painting a pentagram in the basement as a way to get his hamster into Heaven. But Davey’s mother discovers the Satanic emblem and swiftly escorts both Davey and a very unwilling Mr. Puffinopolus to the local church. Will the priest be able to exercise the demon from the stuffed animal and bring a quick end to Vordrex’s mission?
Creator Christopher Petty continues moving the story right along here as he picks up right after the last page of issue #1. Here we get to learn in more detail how the mind of Vordrex works and his paralyzing fright of small domestic rodents. Davey, who was only seen briefly in issue one, gets the full character push here as well, as a somewhat naive and easy to persuade tyke who is likely to become Vordrex’s constant foil in his plans as the series progresses. The back and forth banter between the characters is a little more polished this time around, as they have page upon page to stretch their legs and get comfortable, and sets the stage for what is likely to be a basic template for future issues.
As with issue one, Petty’s art, especially his human characters, is not polished enough to truly match the verbal wit of the dialogue and the rather ludicrous storyline. Mr. Puffinopolus, who is able to perform with exaggerated cartoon expressions, gets away fairly unscathed here, and the hamster in its rolly ball is damn cute, but Davey just feels like a quick sketch on mock-up page, or a character that was only made halfway through finalized design. Petty would do well to hand the drawing reins over to another artist, or just bring Vordrex back to Hell, where his much better looking non-human characters can take center stage. At the end of issue #2, Petty mentions that he will be doing side-stories that take place in Hell on his MySpace page, so maybe it is a compromise.
The comic series is funny though, and has a lot of potential to branch out into some good old fashioned pop culture references, maybe a little anti-religious humor, and hopefully a few glimpses of what is going on in Hell within the main story. Don’t let the high school newspaper cartoonist artwork (though maybe that is even your thing, in a bad special effects B-movie kinda way) keep you away from what could become the flagship comedy title of Alterna Comics.
Available at the Alterna Comic Shop.