Yuck! is an adults only indie ‘zine published by James Andre’s Milk Shadow Books. Essentially a series of nonepisodic anthologies, each book features comic strips by some pretty impressive illustrators whose subject matter ranges from the “that’s not sanitary” to “is that even legal?” There’s no mistake that this publication is made for the underground crowd of the Robert Crumb kind as the cover of each issue seems to effortlessly merge the gorgeous with the grotesque. This aesthetic is extended to the interiors, though not always as masterfully rendered with work that ranges from stick figures to Charles Burns understudy.
Ordering Yuck! is a bit of an experience in of itself, much like taking a walk down any given alleyway in modern day New York City… you make it out alive, but you always feel a little dirty for doing it. In all honestly, though, I have to admit that Andre’s customer service was pretty awesome as he stayed in communication with me in regards to my purchase and even threw in the latest issue as a bonus. Being that Milk Shadow Books is a smaller publisher, not to mention across the pond, it goes without saying that blindly hitting the “Buy Now” button takes a leap of faith regardless of the all-ensuring glow of PayPal’s insignia. Not only was I impressed with Andre’s communication, but my order arrived in a mere few days for which I had utterly been preparing for the yuckiness to ensue… or so I thought.
As a single issue, Yuck! #1 has to be the most visually impressive with entries from Ed Traquino (How I Met Your Mother) and Jacek Zabawa (Square of the Crossbones) being the most technically stunning works while Matt Emery‘s Rapist, Rapist being the funniest with a rapist who rapes other rapists (brilliant!). Issues #2 and #3 also offer their own brand of strangness ranging from the scatalogical humor and “zombie” rape of comix artist “Dexter Cockburn” to the downright weird western tale of a man with two pistols for nipples. Most certainly not the stuff of scholarly pursuit but wildly entertaining nonetheless.
As an entire package, the interiors are entirely black and white with full color matte covers that offer up some of that E.C. Comics flair. At $4 bucks an issue, they’re really a good deal for those seeking something more creative than another Deadpool crossover or epically inconsequential superhero soap drama. My only wish is that I could have seen some more twisted tales of horror as promised by the blatant use of zombie imagery of several of the covers and posters, but that aside Yuck! is a great buy and a good read for those with flexible moral sensibilities.