Welcome back friends! This week's edition of Tradio we look at a work that is a little less on the heavy undertones and a little more on the fun with Jim Rugg and Brian Maruca's Afrodisiac from Adhouse Books.
Afrodisiac is a love letter to the 70's blaxsploitation comics from Marvel. Full of fun and adventure and more pimp slang than you can shake a pimp stick at, Afrodisiac bounces from one story to another with each set up like a different kind of issue of a 1970's Marvel comic. Between each of these tales are Rugg's take on covers and ads from the times and span many different genres of comics. The underlying narrative of the whole thing? Fun...well that and Afrodisiac is a bad mutha-SHUT YO MOUTH! Anyway, it is all done tongue firmly in cheek and we see the many takes on the origins of super heroes through the lens of a black man from the mean streets.
The book is really good and a lot of fun. Rugg is amazing in his versatility of artistic styles and his story telling ability is really top notch. Maruca is great at using the time period of the work to his advantage and creating interesting situations and still honoring the source material. Overall, everything comes together in a beautiful package that you will want to give to anyone who comes to you wanting to read something "different". A fun read and well worth your time.