It’s time to once again BEHOLD THE POWER OF KICKSTARTER! You don’t see me writing that as much these days since the site’s imperial phase is now behind it, but every once in a while a creator I like will use it to get funding for a project that I just have to have. Like Ryan Browne with the latest iteration of his “What is this, I don’t even…” series “God Hates Astronauts.” The closest I can come to giving “GHA” a proper description is that it’s an amalgamation of all the prominent pop-culture characters (most of them hailing from the late 80’s/early 90’s) that made an impression on Browne and have been left to stew in his fervent (or is that fetid) imagination for a couple decades. Yet after three volumes of comics published through Image, the series has also acquired its own strange continuity as well. Which is how we get the setup for this anthology as 3-D Cowboy’s wife and son, 3-D Housewife and 3-D Millenial (did I mention that they’re all ghosts, because they are), have come to visit him in prison where he’s doing time after killing guest-narrator Charles Soule back in the third volume.
The reason for this particular visit is that 3-D Housewife wants 3-D Millenial to get to know his father better and 3-D Cowboy figures the best way to do that is by introducing his son to the family trade: Narrating! So we get stories about Gnarled Winslow having his robot arms stolen by a dinosaur gang, Craymok jumping through time to father an anti-mugging son, Pandor plotting regicide against King Tiger Eating a Cheesburger, and Star Grass just making life miserable for everyone who is unlucky enough to cross his path. All the stories are full of the insanity that makes “GHA” a national treasure as far as I’m concerned, and they feature some spectacular art too. Especially in the case of the James Harren-illustrated story, which shows that he can go even more over-the-top than we’ve seen him go on “B.P.R.D.” and “Rumble.” I know that Browne’s craziness is definitely an acquired taste and “GHA” has been going on for long enough that, if you’re aware of it, you already know if this anthology is going to be for you. Newcomers should absolutely not start with this, but this is most deserving of a spot in any seasoned “GHA” fan’s library.
(And if you’re not a seasoned fan then douse yourself accordingly with salt and pepper and pick up vol. 1 to see where all this madness started!)