Monday, November 20, 2023

Comics Review: "RUMPUS ROOM #2" is All Killer, No Filler


STORY: Mark Russell
ART: Ramon Rosanas
COLORS: Ive Svorcina
LETTERS: Andworld Design
COVER: Tony Harris
VARIANT COVER ARTISTS: Kyle Baker; Mark Russell
32pp, Color, $3.99 U.S. (October 2023)

Rated: “Mature”

Rumpus Room is a new five-issue miniseries from AWA Studios.  It is written by Mark Russell; drawn by Ramon Rosanas; colored by Ive Svorcina; and lettered by Andworld Design.  The series pits a group of prisoners against their jailer, a billionaire who needs their organs and fluids.

Rumpus Room introduces Bob Schrunk.  He is a tech billionaire, collector of bad art, and sufferer of a terrible skin condition.  That condition can only be treated by a special face cream that comes from deep in the bowels of his “Rumpus Room.”  Enter Erica Hernandez.  She is looking for her missing sister, Olivia, who apparently worked for Schrunk's company – not that he'd care.  Erica is about to discover the awful truth.

Rumpus Room #2 opens as Erica gets her bearings in the Rumpus Room.  The dominant theme of her conversations with her fellow prisoners is that there is no escape.  Meanwhile, Schrunk prepares to face the board of his company, Krympt, and he may lose control of it.  Plus, a Schrunk family origin story.

THE LOWDOWN:  AWA Studios' marketing recently began providing me with PDF review copies of their comic book publications.  Rumpus Room #2 is a recent acquisition.

“You either fight to become the person you were meant to be or to control those who have.”

Of all the really good quotes that I have gathered from Rumpus Room, the above is the best.  Rumpus Room is a savage satire, and this second issue assures the readers that the creators, writer Mark Russell and artist Ramon Rosanas, are not letting up.  It's funny and droll, and it is always full of imaginative surprises.  It never goes where I think it will even when I think it is giving me hints.

Reading this second issue, this thought popped into my mind:  Rumpus Room is the kind of fiction that would have caused J. Edgar Hoover, the first Director of the FBI, to have Russell and Rosanas monitored.  In the future, they'll either be jailed or be proclaimed the comic book equivalents of Anthony Burgess.

Rumpus Room #1 was so good, and Rumpus Room #2 is so so good.  Will I one day go to jail for giving Rumpus Room glowing reviews?  Who says I'm even real? Can they jail bots?

I READS YOU RECOMMENDS:  Fans of Mark Russell's unique brand of comic books will want Rumpus Room.


Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

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