Meanwhile in Grand Prairie, Texas... An Oral History of Punk, Art & Grief in Mid-’90s Suburbia Edited by Matt Riggle and Carrie Compton

May 15, 2023

Ed Banky’s Car were a beloved pop punk band in the Dallas/Fort Worth area led by brothers Bobby and Matt Riggle. After two self-released cassette tapes and a 7” EP, their timeline was cut short in 1997 by Bobby dying in his sleep at the age of twenty.

Now, twenty-six years later, Something To Do Records released a quality mixed version of the earlier Ed Banky’s Car recordings and this book as a companion piece. Matt Riggle is the main voice of the book but it features many talking heads from the kids and band members who were around during the ’90s punk explosion in Grand Prairie. There were no all-ages venues in the city, so the kids hung out in a strip mall parking lot at all hours and set up pirate shows at a local playground. Plenty of local bands are mentioned in these pages but the focus is on Ed Banky’s Car and Bobby Riggle. Every kid knew all the lyrics to Ed Banky’s Car’s songs and their walls were plastered with the flyers Bobby made. 

Bobby was a cartoonist and his flyers always had some sort of overtly non sequitur or slightly horrifying cartoons on them. This book also serves as a showcase of Bobby’s single-panel gag comics. Think of a simpler and aesthetically pleasing version of Gary Larson’s The Far Side but with more body dismemberment. Bobby was a pillar of the punk community and when he died, everything just fell apart with the Grand Prairie scene for a while. 

This little book is inspiring, tragic, and funny. If you didn’t live in the Dallas/Fort Worth area will you get much from this book? Maybe not. But this might be the only thing that serves as a collection of Bobby Riggle comics. And I think that’s something worth checking out. –Rick V. (Something To Do,