Sunday, February 28, 2021

Mail Drop Review: The Adventures of Maureen Cringe

Above: The Adventures of Maureen Cringe by Joe Wylie. Copyright Joe Wylie 2021.

I was recently lucky enough to receive a limited edition copy of The Adventures of Maureen Cringe by Joe Wylie, collecting the complete Maureen Cringe comics that appeared in the iconic NZ comics anthology series Strips, issues #2, 3 and 4/5 in the late 1970s. Maureen Cringe is a Penrose Shoe Factory worker who is on a flight to Kathmandu, when she is inexplicably transported to the 26th century. Rescued from Martians by the Ultratibetan musical warrior Omo K'Chang, she joins the crew of the spaceship Karma Dzong and becomes a celebrity musician in the distant future. 

Above: Artwork from The Adventures of Maureen Cringe by Joe Wylie. Copyright Joe Wylie 2021.  

Cartoonist Joe Wylie had visited Nepal, and the traditional Buddhist art techniques he studied there informed his artwork for the strip, which captures the psychedelic flavour of the sixties and seventies music scene, and even hints at the art direction associated with rave music 20 years later - which feels suitably appropriate for a time-travelling musician stranded in the distant future.

It's great to see these strips all compiled together in one place by designer/artist Matt Campbell Downes. The copy I have was from a limited print run of 100 copies, but I've heard there are rumblings of potentially making this available in a larger print run so that everyone can enjoy this lost kiwi comics classic. If and when this happens I'll be sure to update this post with a link for purchase.

- AK!