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Comic, Aaron Lenk, Simple Comics,, $15 (when purchased with chapters 2–4)

Dave and the Object is the debut chapter in Aaron Lenk’s online comic, and it makes no unexpected waves. Lenk’s cutesy philosophy and self-aware over-simplicity can be charming, but appears bland when it’s compared to other online publications it seeks to imitate. Dave and the Object tells the story of a two-legged being called Dave in a world where nothing exists but himself, his evil twin, and the ‘object’ he wishes to possess. Lenk sets himself up for difficulty by depicting his characters as blobs with legs, without expression save for dot eyes. Cute? Yes. But in a world where nothing else exists, white-blob Dave and black-blob Anti-Dave grow less novel after 25 pages of nothing else. The narrative suffers from similar issues: Lenk simplifies everything in order to share a philosophical punch-line as directly as possible, but in turn, he doesn’t give the reader much to keep herself occupied. The text relates: “A world of nothing has been waiting for Dave to explore,/ but Dave would move when he was ready,/ and he’s ready now. / For Dave has ambition, curiosity, and above all, / a materialistic nature.” Nothing is ever bad per se, but nothing is ever memorable either. A passive voice and one too many misused commas push this zine into the realm of frustration. Dave’s Wurld continues online, and this edition shows a lot of potential. However, changes must be made before Lenk’s comic sits on the same level as those he identifies with. (Joel W. Vaughan)

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