Oni Collects Savages
By Brian Jacks
This March, the Hopeless-Savage family will muscle its way into yet another slot on the bookshelves with their second trade paperback collection, HOPELESS SAVAGES: GROUND ZERO. Written by Jen Van Meter (BATMAN: GOLDEN STREETS OF GOTHAM) and illustrated by Bryan O’Malley (ONI PRESS COLOR SPECIAL 2002), this four-part series focuses on the travails of the youngest daughter, Zero, as her first crush runs headlong into a string of bad luck that gets her grounded.
“Zero kind of stepped to the forefront of the book by narrating the first story line,” Van Meter commented, “and I liked her perspective so much, I wanted to stick with it. Plus, she’s the sibling that, as far as the present time is concerned, is the one growing and developing as a person. This allows us to focus on a main story about her learning experiences, and then draw on the pasts of the other characters to provide object lessons about what she is going through.”
As with the HOPELESS SAVAGES debut, GROUND ZERO draws on other artists to bring the side stories to life. Each issue has one of Zero’s family members giving her the lowdown on love, and these flashbacks are drawn by the original HOPELESS SAVAGES artists—Andi Watson (DUMPED), Chynna Clugston-Major (BLUE MONDAY), and recent Golden Panel Award-winner Christine Norrie (CHEAT). The cover and chapter break illustrations are by Terry Dodson, artist on SPIDER-MAN/BLACK CAT: THE EVIL THAT MEN DO.
“It’s a structure we really enjoyed the first time around,” Van Meter explained, “and it allows us to keep the creative HOPELESS SAVAGES family involved.”
“In many ways, this series improves on the original,” editor in chief Jamie S. Rich said. “The first comics had to sort of indoctrinate you into the odd family dynamic and the alternative suburban lifestyle they’ve created. Now Jen and her amazing team of artists can just run with it and give you stories of the Hopeless-Savages being the Hopeless-Savages.”