Getting PARANOID with Joe Deagnon’s Tales of Neurosis: The Comix Anthology [Review]

Paranoid Comix Anthology
Joe Deagnon
Joe Deagnon
Chicken Outfit Media
Now Available

Spawned from the filthy anuses of 100 maniacs… oops, wrong origin story. Spawned from a love of underground comix and Heavy Metal magazine, Joe Deagnon’s PARANOID Tales of Neurosis: The Comix Anthology is a collection of the artist’s earliest works with strips from Exclaim Magazine, Film Threat Magazine and the first five issues of his original Tales of Neurosis run (1986-1990). As one would expect from the same guy partially responsible for a comic about alien invaders and killer sex dolls, Tales of Neurosis is a darkly comic kick in the nuts — chock full of pop culture parody, sexual misconduct and rampant mutilation.

Narrated by the fictional Joe Casual, the book launches itself from one parody into another with endless enthusiasm. From poking fun at horror movie merchandising to the BDSM-laden backdoor world of video production sales, Tales of Neurosis leaves no stone left unturned and no truth left unspoken — it’s filthy and frothing at the mouth, just what you’d expect from an underground comix strip. Among the many indecencies conjured forth my favorite segment would have to be “A Ronald School?” in which Deagnon pulls back the fry-soaked curtains of how the next Ronald McDingho is born (think golden arches). The secret? Depravation cells, brainwashing and Charlie Brown.


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Overflowing with dialogue and ludicrous amounts of linework, every panel of Deagnon’s Tales of Neurosis hums with a claustrophobic frenzy that’s equally gruesome and hilarious. Although some of his earlier work remains a bit rough about the edges, true comix fans will have a hard time finding much fault in that.

Written by Rondal

Rondal is the Editor-in-Chief of Strange Kids Club and a creative instigator who tackles each day with Red Bull-induced enthusiasm and a mind for adventure. Rondal has written for other sites including Rue Morgue, Fuel Your Illustration and Bloodsprayer. His obsession with horror movies, 80s animation and action figures is considered unhealthy by medical professionals.

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