Bug Martini Review

By | Tuesday, November 05, 2013 Leave a Comment
I don't recall when I started reading Adam Huber's Bug Martini. Certainly not as long as it's been around, but plenty long enough to get a feel for Huber's style of humor and sense of timing. I'm opting to write a review of it, in part, to figure out why I've been enjoying it.

Don't get me wrong! It's not like it's a bad comic or woefully unfunny. But it doesn't have a lot of the hallmarks I typically gravitate towards in comics.
As you can see, Huber's art style here is pretty simple. The figures are barely more than stick figures, and backgrounds are almost non-existent. And he sticks to the same four panel structure pretty consistently. Despite all that, Huber manages to evoke a lot of nuance and style out a relatively few number of lines.

The jokes and comedy are funny. Generally not falling-out-of-your-chair-laughing funny, but more than a few steps up the comedy scale from your average newspaper comic. Interestingly, he does seem to evoke the set-up/punchline format of most gag strips, but at the same time utilizes the single panel gag style in (nearly) every panel.

As I sit and think about, I suppose it's that last part that stands out most for me. Each strip is almost a series of independent gags that still follow in a narrative sequence. In effect, he's using more of a set-up/punchline/punchline/punchline format. Part of why I like Bill Waterson and Bill Amend's comics is because they frequently have a second punchline after the main punchline, and Huber emulates that after a fashion here.
Huber also stands out by not really having an easy hook. I'd be hard-pressed to give you a "what's the strip about" that didn't go on for a while, despite having a regular format and style of humor.

And there's also not much in the way of money-making going on. He's got his originals for sale, but no books or tchotchkes. Not even a donation button. He's been around long enough, and seems to have enough of a fan-base that he could try making some bucks from this, but as far as I can tell, he's just putting these out there for his own amusement as much as anything.

It's not a comic that hits you over the head with "hey, wow, this is really amazing; I need to share this with everybody" -- it's pretty understated, probably due in large part to the art style. But it's consistently funny. And in a way that you don't really see anywhere else. Huber's is one of the few comics I can count on to make me smile five days a week, and that is very much appreciated and I sit down for work still shaking out the cobwebs.
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