Review: Punch Drunk Moustache / Author: Various / Publisher: Titan Books / Release Date: Out Now
Punch Drunk Moustache is an anthology which has allowed eight prominent animation artists to come together and put out a collection of offbeat, visually interesting examples of storytelling through art. We begin with Amy Beth Christenson’s From Chickens to Victory which retells the consequences of letting humans develop and play with super serums. Next, we have Hyunwoo Lim’s Insatiable Desires, which storyboards the scene and characters of an allegorical struggle for the elements that existence holds so dear. Jeff Sangalli’s Creature Hunter lays the foundations of a story of a little girl who collides with Jim Henson-style creatures, whilst John-Paul Balmet’s Drifting follows a road trip which takes a rather unexpected turn. Next, onto Will Nichols’ Mo-Su-Te-Su; this follows a robot’s return trip to Earth to see a vastly changed existence for himself. Nate Watson’s XB3 shows us, as he puts it, a ‘woman running away from monsters’. Penultimately, Sean Pando’s Phylo’s Rite of Passage tells a story of potentially legendary proportions ... using frogs! And finally, Chris Voy’s Rainmaker explores how water can be expanded into a creative story.
Punch Drunk Moustache is a wonderfully abstract collection by designers of the highest calibre; bringing together experience from such institutions as Lucasfilms, Sony Entertainment as well as more independent firms such as Thrillbent and consequently this collection simply oozes quality. Each story, though many of them remain in their infancy, are so well drawn and stylised in their own unique way that it is no wonder all of the artists are of such esteemed reputations. They bring different tastes, so whether you are looking at the more classic science-fiction flavour of Chickens to Victory, or the manga influence of Mo-Su-Te-Su, you are certain to find work that suits your own palette while also discovering something new.
It's worth stressing that these are incomplete pieces of work. Punch Drunk Moustache is an anthology of ‘works in progress’ and the potential for these works to go places is infinite; one hopes that this is only the first volume of an anthology series that could have a bright future ahead for it.