Comic Solutions

Fowl Language

Screen Shot 2016-08-07 at 10.15.16 AMFowl Language: Welcome to Parenting
Brian Gordon
Andrews McMeel Publishing
March 2016

Parenting. It’s all magic and roses and wondrous new adventures every day right? Kids learn something new and you go “awwwwww.” They never ever get in trouble and do weird stuff. Right? Right??? Well….no. No. There will be moments like this, but more likely than not once they start talking they talk back to you, invent new lines of logic and make less sense than some politicians.

So to answer the obvious question first, am I parent? No. No I’m not. But I’m the oldest of five and have plenty of friends that are parents, and well good humor transcends these types of boundaries. And that’s what you have with Fowl Language, a humor that will have you howling in laughter (or maybe…quacking in laughter) no matter the situation.

Brian Gordon’s sense of humor is relatable because he draws directly from real life. There aren’t over the top, slightly unrealistic situations that show up in some “family” oriented strips (looking at some of those old school strips. You know the ones.) But instead they draw directly from real life, like playing pretend, where the pretend veers off into the realm of “you’re doing it wrong!”…even though you have no idea what’s right about Darth Vader being in a tutu (although you’ll silently agree it’s quite right.) More than that though he talks about the way to handle things with a deft touch and a sense of humor. Like explaining gay marriage to your kids in this strip: See the simplicity? It works.

Brian’s art style is….well…hrm. I’m not sure if I have someone to compare it too, to be honest. Its think broad stroke lines create the rather simplistic bodies of the characters and solid colors make them have distinct looks for their personalities. But the selling point? The real selling point? Is the expressions on the faces. Brian is a master at capturing the bulging of the eyes, the raise of the eyebrows, the fat lines jiggling as the child bounces on the stomach. This is flat out amazeballs laugh out loud and you won’t stop once you start reading.

I have one complaint about the book however. And that is that as a webcomic Fowl Language contains a bonus panel for each strip that takes the last panel and juuuuuussst pushes it over the edge slightly and makes it that much more funny or poignant. And the book doesn’t include that, which is a real shame. Maybe in the next one they’ll be able to do that.

scary-place1I think that everything about this strip can be summed up in the last page illustration. It’s a scary and dark world. But Fowl Language makes it just a bit brighter and bit more bearable.

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