Comic: "Maakies"
Published by: Fantagraphics
Written by: Tony Millionaire
Artist: Tony Millionaire

Reviewer: Max Burbank
Posted: 1/13/2009

Plot: A dipsomaniacal monkey and a suicidal crow sail the seven seas, wreaking havoc whilst perpetually soused.

Review: God Bless Tony Millionaire.

If there is a better artistic example of the full throttled embrace of life’s pointless absurdity I’d like to see it. The content of the book I’m reviewing can be purchased in a much prettied up and arty hardback form titled “Premillennial Maakies”, but I prefer original version, trade paper, simply called “Maakies”, the name of the alternative newspaper strip collected within. It’s flimsy, printed on extremely cheap newsprint pulp, and the shabbiness of the paper is in perfect sync with the scratchy, hung over while still drunk bombast of its nautical anti heroes.

Reeling panel by panel between gorgeous, steel point etched pre-photographic illustration and raw, minimal scrawl, Millionaire’s line art conveys the violent sliding lurch of a three-masted vessel tossed between terrible, rolling mountains and trenches on a stormy sea or the sudden roller coaster drop and ascent found only in the second wind of the most committed three day drunk.

A horridly drunken sailor monkey known as Uncle Gabby provides the narrative drive, his nonsensical ‘never say die’ in the face of failure, ruin, violent cephalopods and Napoleonic crocodiles is the wind that fills the ships sails. Ever at his side is Drinky Crow, a rusty anchor of liquor fueled lethal despair, constantly blowing his brains out at point blank range but never allowed the release of death, always there again in the next strip no explanation asked for or required.

Between them they encounter, caress and dissect every vicissitudes of life; Birth, death, love, desire, all are taken up and shaken between greasy paw and oily beak. This is the King Lear of Newspaper Comic Strips, all wild abandon and lowbrow slapstick.

Examine a single panel: Drinky crow, discharging pistol to his head, the bullet literally blowing out an eye, shouts “Goodbye, Cruel World!!” while next to him, his bastard offspring, grinning, barely feathered, fresh from the shell fires a pop gun at his own head, the cork and string rebounding harmlessly as he hollers in proud imitation, “Good Boy Cool Wound!”

‘Genius’ is a tired old whore of a word, but I happily trot her out here.

Overall rating: WholeWholeWholeWholeWhole
(Scored on a 0.5 - 5 pickles rating: 0.5 being the worst and 5 being the best)

Reader Comments

Jan 13th, 2009, 05:21 PM
I think they've turned this into an Adult Swim show.
Pickled Patriarch
Jan 13th, 2009, 07:05 PM
They have. They also had Drinky Crow on an old episode of SNL where he keeps doing chores for a squirrel and buying booze until he has enough cash left over to buy a gun and shoot himself in the head... but nothing beats the comics. I'm a huge fan of Maakies and can't recommend the series enough to all of you. "When We Were Very Maakies" is a great one.

Excellent review choice, Max!
is hopped up on goofballs
Jan 13th, 2009, 07:58 PM
I had no idea that the Drinky Crow Show was based on a comic. The show is goddamn hilarious, so I'm definitely going to have to check this one out.
Jan 13th, 2009, 08:18 PM
I enjoy The Drink Crow Show. I really should pick this up.
Last of the Time Lords
Jan 14th, 2009, 05:54 AM
I love this stuff. It's a guilty pleasure. Haven't seen the cartoon yet, need to check it out.
The stealer of Pies
Jan 14th, 2009, 11:05 AM
But good god do I love Maakies. I loved it so much, I have a small tattoo of Drinky Crow with his ever present rum bottle and the "dook dook dook" sound effect.

Long live Tony Millionaire!
hanging out
Jan 14th, 2009, 01:59 PM
I knew I had seen Drinky Crow somewhere before. I assumed it was Playboy. But SNL makes more sense.
The Magnificent Bastard
Jan 14th, 2009, 02:22 PM
The comic, cartoon, and SNL skit all ROCK!

Not much more to say.
Amicable Herculean
Jan 16th, 2009, 08:49 PM
The cartoon would be a lot better if they used traditional animation, it looks like a bad videogame cutscene.
The Magnificent Bastard
Jan 17th, 2009, 12:43 AM
Actually, I've kinda been digging the cel-shading. I think it's done pretty well in that show.
Forum Virgin
Feb 19th, 2009, 10:49 PM

Gotta see the SNL skit.

Where can I see that SNL skit again? Even as a younger kid I could laugh at an alcoholic crow shooting himself in the head and now someone has made that premise into an entire show! (given only 15 mins) idk. crazy.