Warning: The following contains dumb ideas, awful Batman impersonations, and a Matt Weiters (pronounced ‘Mat Wheat-erz’) – shaped hole in the lineup.
A look at some panels from Peter Bagge’s Hate #22, published in 1996. In 1996, I lived about four hours away from anyplace that sold ‘alternative’ comics. I didn’t get to see this ’til 1997. This little chunk of a larger story has echoed in the space between my ears for sixteen years.
The guy in blue in the panels above was pretty representative of, say, 90% of the ‘rock guys’ I met when I turned 21 and could go see live music besides earnest youth deacons and horrible all-ages shows at the Hour Haus. I’m pretty sure the ‘service station shirt look’ is done and over with; I think it’s been replaced with black t-shirts from other crappy bands no one cares about topped with a disgusting taco-shaped cowboy hat.
Here’s what people say about the guy in blue behind his back:
Guy gets duded up in his coolest Batsuit, and people still laugh at him.
So the guy in blue is playing a rowhouse dump in the Northeast with a low, flat ceiling. Naturally, people are gonna hang out and pay attention to him, after he’s gone thru the trouble of loading in his big old amps, and helped his drummer set up, right?
Look, the guy in blue has little wrinkle lines which are supposed to show that he’s somewhat older than the couple above, who are said to be in their late twenties. The guy in blue in somewhere in his thirties, he’s got his Batsuit on, he’s posted fliers at the ‘cool’ record shops, and the place that sells comics like this one and other artifacts of ‘underground’ culture, and maybe at the guitar shop, maybe the overpriced secondhand boutique. He’s gotten out his book of phone numbers and called up his buddies from over the years to make himself the nervous, sweaty center of attention for thirty-five minutes late on a Thursday night. Is there someone out there to hear his lute song?
There are two morals to this story, and they are these:
1) Never try.
2) Try playing thru smaller amps.