Monsters Inc. Laughing Factory Written by Paul Benjamin
Art by Amy Mebberson BOOM! Studios
Trade Paperback; Price: $9.99
Release date: March 3, 2010
The interesting thing about creating comic books based on Pixar‘s string of successful animated films is that you can further explore the universes those characters live in. One of Pixar’s early successes was Monsters Inc., owing largely to its breakthrough animation and great voice acting work from Billy Crystal and John Goodman.
BOOM! KIDS, now having the contract on all Pixar materials, has produced a volume of comics from the Monsters Inc. universe, following Sullivan and Mike Wazowski (I always thought it was hilarious that monsters would have such boring names) on their continuing adventures in Monstropolis.
At first I didn’t expect much out of Monsters Inc. in comic book form. A fan of the original film, I couldn’t see how much further they possibly could have carried the story. In the end, it turns out I was right not to expect much. While the dialogue still carries much of the humour and charm that made the original script so endearing, it is apparent that Paul Benjamin was hard pressed to come up with new ways to use the characters.
Every story in the volume includes some variation of Randall or Mr. Waternoose escaping from prison to “˜wreak their revenge’ on Sully and Mike for ruining their lives. By the end of the volume it’s clear that they were pretty much out of ideas. Not even the inclusion of the Sadistic Toy Torturer from Toy Story as a “˜guest villain’ could do much to cover up an obvious lack of depth.
Amy Mebberson‘s art, much like the art in the rest of the Pixar comic line, has a hard time competing with the incredible digital animation that the studio is known for. While still fun, the comic never shakes the feeling of being an unnecessary addition to the Pixar mythos.