Friday, May 26, 2023

Even for a Groo comic, that escalated quickly.

You can see where it's going, sure; but it's still worth the trip! From 1991, Groo the Wanderer #84, "The Puppeteers" Written, drawn, and inked by Sergio Aragon├ęs, co-plot and dialogue by Mark Evanier, colors by Tom Luth, letters by Stan Sakai.
Groo has become addicted to the idiot box--in this case, puppet shows! And he prefers the classic, hit-him-in-the-head shows; not the boring ones with plots or characters. So, a puppeteer crew starts pandering to Groo, the absolute lowest common denominator; which attracts other viewers to see what's so funny. But the puppeteers need funds, which prompts Groo to give the local innskeeper a bit of a shakedown; so the puppeteers smooth over feathers by offering to talk up how great the inn is during their shows. This prompts other local small businesses to approach both puppet crews, buying ad time and making creative suggestions. Before long, they've branched into local "news," like a re-enactment of a murder, and pre-made "puppet dinners" so their audience won't have to stop watching to eat! Arguably, the puppeteers are almost performing a valuable service, in keeping Groo occupied; as a night-shift of assorted shills take over for late-night shows. After getting into political ads, eventually one crew leaves town, having heard there weren't puppet shows in the the market was wide open!
This issue has a dedicated subscription ad, for a somewhat sad occasion: I had to scan this cover for the GCD, since it was the last newsstand issue of the series, and it would only be available at comic shops or subscription going forward. I remember reading the first issues of Epic's Groo on the newsstand, and it feels like something important was just lost, even if few realized at the time.


H said...

Hmm, I was expecting more destruction and slashing. I hope Groo at least got to wreck something when he was selling ad space.

And also that he got some cheese dip- I know he's fond of that.

Mr. Morbid said...

So basically Groo invented several industries & occupations, namely dinner theater. Nice.
This reminds me about learning about the types of audience members that made up the audience that watched Shakespeare’s plays. To sum it up they were dumb, simpletons who also didn’t appreciate complicated, drawn out storylines and only appreciated basic concepts of sex & violence. Hell, the stages had to be built so that the drool that polled & collected from these uneducated masses slid down & emptied into a trap door to the side. Thanks freshman year of HS English.

H said...

I thought that was just the cheap seats by the stage, and that there were a bunch of rich people in private boxes who wanted to look cool. Whatever the case, dinner theater is in many ways the predecessor to TV and TV dinners. I'm sure Groo would enjoy it all- lots to eat and people bonking each other in the head galore.