Gag! (Barrister)

™ and © Barrister

A part of me wanted to hate Gag! so that I could make the obvious “so bad you’ll…” joke. But I didn’t and you won’t. Gag! is the brainchild of Barry Dutter, a writer with a respectable pedigree in the comics industry, who appears to have written every word in the magazine. A fair number of the pieces are sophomoric (“What’s the Worst That Could Happen?”) or rely upon adolescent sex gags (“Hef’s Apprentice”). But guess what? Some people are sophomoric adolescents and they like that kind of stuff. The “Perfect 10 on Page 10” is blatantly gratuitous, and there are a couple of groping jokes involving Doc Ock, including one on the cover. We get it; he’s got a lot of arms. But there are also bright spots. “A Tale of Two Kitties” contrasts Halle Berry with Julie Newmar. “NY Peeps” is probably the best piece in the entire issue. No, Gag! won’t make you gag. It also won’t replace Mad but it’s an acceptable addendum between issues of the genre leader.

— Jack Abramowitz

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