Zine Reviews

DO NOT DISTURB: HOTEL ROOM DRAWINGS, $14, 5½” x 7½”, full color, 48pgs.

Seriously charming, well-produced art zine by Harley Zinker composed entirely of drawings of hotel room layouts, the only stipulation being that they must be produced on the hotel’s own stationary. There’s something really meditative in this practice of refusing to take space for granted, whether it developed out of boredom, sheer repetition, or, indeed, some […]

EAST SIDE WEST SIDE DINER REPORT 2023, $?, 8½” x 11”, copied, 1 pg.

In this crucial one-pager, Liz “take(s) a journey… to the diners of the Lower East Side and the West village” of New York City. In lesser hands, a bunch of reviews might ring hollow, but Liz is an authority and an aficionado of all things diner, calling out spots that have gone bougie, gone soft, […]

FOGTOWN #1, $11.99, 5½” x 8½”, copied, 76 pgs.

I don’t understand what this is. It opens with interviews from a bunch of pseudo celebrities preaching generically about saving the environment and how Hollywood can incorporate environmentalism into its storytelling without bothering to mention how Hollywood is complicit in the destruction of the environment. Truth be told, if the Hollywood film industry collapsed today […]

HOW NOT TO DRAW COMICS THE MARVEL WAY, trade,5½” x 8½”, 52pgs.

Matt Harrison, the hand and brain behind Root Beer Comics, puts together a comprehensive educational tool for drawing comics. And by that, I mean the gist of the zine is, “Ignore every comics-related education. You don’t need shit other than pen, paper, and an idea to draw comics.” Harrison actually goes through the steps from […]

“IT FEELS GOOD TO SAY WHAT I WANT”: BLACK FLAG, FOIA, THE FBI, AND KROQ-FM, $?, 5½” x 7½”, copied, 16 pgs.

Back in the ’00s I worked for the federal government and often helped out the FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) officer on staff as she fielded requests from individuals who wanted federal documents related to our agency. It’s a time-consuming process on the federal side since the federal government has a lot of information to sort through. […]

JELLY CAKE #1, $0.25, 3” x 5”, copied, 14 pgs.

An alien invasion upends a newsroom where one reporter is doggedly intent on writing a review on Godzilla films in this all-new issue of Jelly Cake zine. As with other zines from Piecemeal Fortress, Jelly Cake is a series of short conversations, in this case between two news reporters and between news reporters and their […]

LOAFING THE DONKEY #84, $5, 7” x 8½”, copied, 48 pgs.

After a five-month delay, editor and creator Peter Mantis released Issue 84 of Loafing the Donkey, the long-running zine that is steadily nearing “the magic 100 issue mark,” says Mantis in his intro to #84. “That’ll be a milestone worth crowing about. Or I’ll croak.” For now, Mantis and Loafing the Donkey are still with […]

LOOK AT WHAT I AM NOW, $2?, 5½” x 8½”, 8 pgs.

Four short angst-ridden poems by Lint Lobotomy straddling the line between self-loathing and empowerment. Struggles with gender, sexuality, mental health, and rural or quasi-rural life. Putting the micro in micro-chapbook, it’s hard to get a strong sense of the work with little to work with; nonetheless, they’ve put it out there. No price information included, […]

NXOEED #3, $6 ppd., 5½” x 8½”, offset, 24 pgs.

In the finest clip art tradition, Nxoeed has compiled another strong collection of images ideal for use on flyers, stickers, shirts, cop cars, you name it. His hand-drawn font is reminiscent of the Cramps logo, but a little attention reveals hidden bits—how the letter K looks, in his work, like the talon of a particularly […]

OUTFIELD HAIKU, $4, 5½” x 8½”, full color, 18pgs.

Michael Mclean writes haikus all about baseball within comic panel-like illustrations. The drawings are simple yet charming with a wild and bright assortment of colors. Michael likes to draw stretchy, hairy arms and pink, flowing beards. Some of the backgrounds are made with some experimental digital art that looks kind of trippy. I don’t dig […]

PATRON #1, $0.25, 3” x 5”, copied, 14 pgs.

With the subtitle “Employee Spotlight: ‘Moms at Work,’” Patron is a series of mundane conversations between clerks and clerks, managers and clerks, and a manager and caller to the store, all of which have the running theme of a mother (typically one of the clerks) in the role of caretaker for her son while she’s […]

POSTCARDS FROM IRVING #5, $3, 8½” x 3½”, copied, 12 pgs.

This ever-fascinating zine explores the history of the zinester’s grandfather, Ben Irving, an obscure big band leader who travelled around the country playing music, sending the titular postcards back to his family. This issue focuses heavily on one of Irving’s musical partners, a somewhat more prominent British pianist named Eddie “Piano” Miller, who also dabbled […]


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