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Comic zine, Kate Lavut,, $5 each or two for $8

This zine combo pack is all black ink  and pen-line drawings over stark white  paper. The characters float on the page,  with rarely any visual background for  context, and the voice bubbles sling  across the page to any place they can ft.  Chico tells the true story of when Kate  Lavut cut of her hair and traveled as a  boy to Mexico. In part one, Lavut is preparing for  her trip. She upsets her family with her  excursion plans, creates a new look and  seeks out advice on how to act manly.  Part two is the commute: She sleeps in  bus stations and lies to border guards.  Neither issue sees her arrival in Mexico,  so for that, readers will have to wait for  part three. The story itself is just as minimal as  the drawings. We never find out why  she wants to go to Mexico, or why she  chooses to “dress up as a boy,” or why  she decides to travel alone. So much  is left unsaid that the zine doesn’t feel  extremely personal or original; angry  parents, annoying tourists, and  uncomfortable buses aren’t exactly  unheard of in a travel log. And the fact  that everyone she encounters is either an  asshole or dim-witted feels unrealistic.  But the simplicity has its upside: what  we’re left with is a witty and dry comic  that constantly zig-zags from humorous  to tragic. And in Part Two, the step-by- step guide to peeing on a moving bus  delivers on both counts. Chico is charming. Lavut has a knack  for child-like drawings and bare-bone  narratives. If we can excuse a few ideas  that aren’t entirely original, we’ve got  ourselves a lovely zine. (Colin Brush)

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