Strange Adventures just got in an order from the awesome Microcosm Publishing, and I was super stoked because the newest Snakepit comic was in there. I've loved this diary style, punk-infused comic since I read the collection, My Life in the Jugular Vein, when I was on tour with my band last fall. Snakepit is simple concept: Ben Snakepit draws a comic for every day of his life. Every day has three panels, and a song to go along with it. Most days include come combination of work, band practice, eating some kind of delicious-sounding Mexican food (it takes place in Austin, Texas), and getting blazed. It's pretty minimalist in style and content, but deceptively so. Ben manages to sneak a lot into those three panels, from cute moments and jokes to pretty astute observations about punk music, relationships and getting old. The mundanity is part of what makes Snakepit more addictive than a bag of Doritos. (And I really like Doritos.) Each collection is a year in Ben's life, and after reading one through, you feel like you really know the dude. Like he's your roommate, giving you updates about what band he saw last night, or the lady troubles he's having. My favourite parts of the comic are always when Ben goes on tour, which he's done a lot. When you'er touring with a band, your day always feels like it fits into the rhythm of a Snakepit comic: driving somewhere/show/after party or something fun in a city/good dinner/show. You really can't fit more than three events into a day. Ben totally acurately represents the way tour is a combination of extremely bananas and pretty boring. But the tours are super fun to read about especially since Snakepit is a veritable who's who of rad American punk bands. Seriously, I much prefer these comics to like, Skyscraper, for finding out about awesome bands.
Snakepit 2008 is the definitely the quietest year for Ben. He's getting older, going to bed earlier. He's in a committed relationship, and he only goes on one tour.
He gets and Playstation, so that dominates a lot of the action in the comic for a while for a while. But as a reader who's pushing thirty, I appreciated this. And since I feel like I've seen Ben partying for a few years, it's kinda nice to see him settle down. It has all the visual jokes, great music and burritos that I've come to love.