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Box Office Poison (Box Office Poison #1)

by
3.95  ·  Rating Details ·  3,417 Ratings  ·  189 Reviews
This epic story of Sherman, Dorothy, Ed, Stephen, Jane, and Mr. Flavor is not to be missed. Alex Robinson's completely natural and inspiring knack for dialogue has made his story of dreary jobs, comic books, love, sex, messy apartments, girlfriends (and the lack thereof), undisclosed pasts, and crusty old professionals one of the most delightful and whimsical graphic novel ...more
Paperback, New Edition, 602 pages
Published December 8th 2015 by Top Shelf Productions (first published 2001)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Imogen
May 16, 2010 Imogen rated it did not like it
I don't understand what the fuck people like about this book. Here's what I got from the first 150 pages (of 600), before I gave up: people who go to book stores are idiots; smugness is a virtue, as is feeling superior to everyone else all the time; misogyny is no reason not to publish a book; who cares if you spell a word wrong every few pages; Pete Bagge's art has been extremely influential; and transsexuals aren't real people, they're punchlines. Good work, Alex Robinson. Fuck all of these th ...more
Sam Quixote
Aug 06, 2011 Sam Quixote rated it did not like it
I love comics and thought this'd be fantastic but man is it anything but. Two friends out of uni hit the city, get crappy jobs, one of them works in a bookshop and wants to be a writer. He makes fun of customers in the bookshop behind their backs for not knowing anything about books. Fair enough, I've met librarians who thought Charles Dickens was a novel by David Copperfield. But come on, easy target! Hardly engaging. Then we have the foreign landlady who shouts a lot of pidgen english, the cra ...more
Kerry
Jul 09, 2010 Kerry rated it it was ok
I grabbed this book when I saw it in the library the other day because Imogen was so vitriolic about it, and I expected it to be deliciously awful.

Instead, it was just mediocre. The art was pretty okay, and I liked a few of the characters. But the overall plot was boring and had no real point or resolution, the main dude (Sherman) was a jackass and his girlfriend was unlikable, and there were goddamned spelling errors. Like, homophone confusion. Like, "your" when he meant "you're." And he thinks
...more
Subroto
Dec 15, 2012 Subroto rated it liked it
Remember the last time you were falling out of love that too with a person who you really thought was "your person?" Remember feeling attracted to random people just because you were so unhappy in your own relationship ? Remember doubting yourself ? Remember wondering if this other attraction was the real thing or it was just another distraction courtesy your "sinful" hormones ?

Remember trying to break up but failing all the time ?

Remember sitting alone and telling yourself you are a jackass -
...more
Licha
Mar 20, 2015 Licha rated it liked it
The dreaded 3 star rating. I always hate giving a three star because it always looks like a book was just average. Sometimes it is the case, but what about when you really enjoy a book, it’s just not necessarily earth shattering or important enough to make the 4 star or 5 star rating? So for purposes of distinction this one merits a 3.5 star rating from me.

This was like watching a marathon of Friends or any such twenty-something/relationship sitcom. I was sad when it came to an end because at th
...more
Jeff Lanter
Oct 11, 2015 Jeff Lanter rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels
I have been wanting to read a "slice of life" or more memoir focused graphic novel for a while and happened to see Box Office Poison on sale in the Google Play Store so I picked it up. I really enjoy this type of story and as a result, found Box Office Poison to be very enjoyable. The story focuses on a group of geeky 20-something year olds in New York in the 90's. As someone who has been to New York, was once a geeky 20 year old, and am interested in comics and the comics industry, Box Office P ...more
Jeremy
I would have enjoyed this book a lot more in the early '90s, back when college-age twentysomethings seemed like attractive, carefree jokesters as opposed to entitled, good-for-nothing space-wasters. As such types go, however, they're well-developed, occasionally amusing, and compelling enough to propel one through all googolplex pages of this graphic monster.

Peripheral stories often leave more of a lasting impression than the main narratives, such as a brief but rather wonderful vingette in whi
...more
Christopher
This is a prime instance of the elusive comic you needn't be ashamed of reading. It's a graphic novel in the truest sense of the word; it's just regular novel with pictures instead of prose. It contains no men of steel or supervillains hellbent on blowing up Metropolis. Instead, it consists of well-conceived and -developed characters, emotional resonance, and true-to-life plot.

It's also an incredibly ambitious project. He's juggling a lot of characters and several storylines. It's the kind of b
...more
Darko
Apr 12, 2013 Darko rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics
jel zbog strip tematike ili zbog tih svakodnevnih muško ženskih odnosa te raznoraznih referenci na kultne filmove i knjige ofucani holivudski film me podsjeća na Chasing Amy Kevina Smitha,a Chasing Amy mi je jedan od dražih filmova. preporuka za više popodnevnih uživanja uz kavu na balkoniću dok se na playeru vrte the beatles i the police. 600 stranica zabavnog crteža s masu dragih likova i nekoliko iritantnih. Obavezna lektira za fanove dobrog stripa
Rinda Elwakil
Oct 20, 2015 Rinda Elwakil rated it it was ok
الكوميك فن جميل محبب مقرب للنفس مهضوم حقه في مصر و الشرق الأوسط بشكل عام

لنا في المانجا اليابانية و التطور المذهل فيها و في إيراداتها لليابان عبرة و عظة و حسرة

الرسوم هنا جميلة جدا، لكن القصة سيئة


لو حد من محبي الكوميك أو المانجا يعرف سلسلة معينة بالاسم حلوة و متوفرة أونلاين فضلًا يرشحهالي و هكون في غاية الامتنان :)
Vivian
Apr 28, 2016 Vivian rated it it was ok
Shelves: books-i-own, 2016
After 600 pages, I guess I was just hoping for more. The plot was uninspiring, the characters were either meh or annoying and the ending was super rushed. I didn't hate it and there were definitely moments which I enjoyed but it just wasn't for me.
Alan Chen
Jul 14, 2015 Alan Chen rated it liked it
Shelves: comics
If I read this in my twenties I think I would have thought it was phenomenal. The book deals with a bunch of early 20 somethings dealing with dead end jobs, problematical budding romances, virginity/limited sex life, economic issues, sharing apartments all the while doing very little about it and drinking to excess. We got Spencer who wants to be a writer but has worked at the same book store for over 5 years and already has his degree but no motivation to leave the job. His girlfriend is self-c ...more
Matt
Dec 16, 2013 Matt rated it it was ok
Reminds me a lot of many other pseudo autobiographical graphics that I can't even name at the moment. Great illustration, but a sort of mundane and soap opera storyline. Engaging enough, but after a while I found myself thinking "I'm only reading this to finish it -- I kind of don't care what happens". I need a way to describe that feeling... you know, the one you get when you're half way into a TV series and you just keep watching it because you're comfortable but not still interested. The bana ...more
Bob Dobbs
May 05, 2013 Bob Dobbs rated it did not like it
Box Office Poison is one of the worst comic books I've ever skimmed. Its art is extremely simple and ugly, for starters. It looks like something a child would draw. All I got from it was that it was about this loser getting into a dysfunctional relationship with an alcoholic, all the while living in a shitty apartment in shitty New York City and holding down a soul-crushingly tedious job to support this lifestyle. Just page after page of crudely drawn characters in an ugly world of unhappiness, ...more
Keon
Sep 18, 2011 Keon rated it it was amazing
I think it perfectly captures a group of imperfect, flawed but relatable people, growing up and making choices that define us in our twenties to thirties. The characters reminded me of real people i knew, myself included. It depicted them unflinchingly, with compassion but also with clarity about people's limitations. The graphic novel definitely improved (especially the art) as it went along and the pacing feels odd but I felt this was something you just have to delve into. It had a Dickensian ...more
michelle
Aug 15, 2016 michelle rated it it was ok
i am smarter than everyone else, men who are better looking than me are dumb, women who are out of my league are the same, immigrant new yorkers have funny accents, some dudes date high schoolers and use date rape drugs and that's not my problem, etc etc

didn't really Get anywhere

art was okay, i liked how many characters were introduced, the little tidbits and multiple storylines were cool
Eric
Dec 29, 2014 Eric rated it did not like it
I just don't get it. Drawing is lackluster and the story is boring. I wasn't expecting superheroes or anything but zzzzzzzzzzzzz.
Joseph
Sep 06, 2007 Joseph rated it it was amazing
Been 4 years, decided to give this a re-read. Still fantastic, and leaves me quite inspired to tell a story like this myself.
Kevin
Mar 22, 2016 Kevin rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novels
loved this book. if you like indie, slice of life, character driven stories, then this is for you.
Klaas Roggeman
Jan 30, 2017 Klaas Roggeman rated it did not like it
Shelves: not-finished
This is a slice-of-life graphic novel, but what a boring slice it is!
All customers at a bookshop are annoying and incredibly dumb. Way to go to basically insult your potential readers. The protagonists are mainly twentysomethings with shitty jobs, who try to make it as artists (writer or comic book artist) and their daily struggles. But these struggles are hardly interesting, poetic or poignant. Just mainly boring.

Dani Shuping
Nov 27, 2011 Dani Shuping rated it liked it
Shelves: graphic-novel
One of my favorite things about going into a good used bookstore (you know the ones that actually carry comics and graphic novels) is discovering artists/authors I hadn’t heard of before. And last year when exploring one of my favorite stores I came across the book “Too Cool To Be Forgotten” and was entranced by Alex’s art and story. So I eagerly looked to see what else he had done and soon discovered “Box Office Poison,” one of Alex’s best known works. The story explore themes of friendship, li ...more
wilde
Jan 10, 2017 wilde rated it really liked it
For many, this book is some kind of alt-comic classic. It's a graphic memoir that struggles to capture the intersecting lives of struggling young people with high hopes and empty bank accounts. There's something to be said about the largely affectionate way this book draws its collection of slackers, would-be artists, and frustrating hipsters. Yes, it's a little sloppy, far from perfect, meandering, filled with believable prejudices and outdated world views. It's a product of its time, and has a ...more
Manfred Moonlight Ackermann
Un gros pavé, une BD de 600 pages, c'est toujours intéressant.
J'aime lire des BD assez conséquentes étant donné qu'il y a la place pour instaurer une ambiance, bien percevoir les personnages etc .. et c'est entièrement le cas ici !
On traverse la vie des différents personnages, qui rencontrent leurs difficultés dans la vie, on partage tous les grands moments, les questionnements, et tout ce que cela implique.
C'est rarement très joyeux, mais véritablement humain !
On ne sait pas quelle est la p
...more
Marijan
Jan 02, 2017 Marijan rated it it was ok
Shelves: graphic-novel, comics
Not really a graphic novel but a collection of comics that I suppose was published for a few years given the sheer volume the collection amounted to (600 pages). So there is no real plot or real story planning, just a meandering storyline about a group of variously interesting characters in a 90s slacker style that eventually gets interrupted quite abruptly with an epilogue that attempts to bring some closure to the many open ends. There are some positive things about this book, the characters a ...more
Arminzerella
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
George
May 04, 2008 George rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novels
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oscar Salas
Oct 17, 2012 Oscar Salas rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Publicado en 2001, Box Office Poison, curiosamente traducido como Malas Ventas (arriesgado pero sincrónico) parece, en principio, haber envejecido en su novedad. Contar la historia de un reparto de jóvenes irrumpiendo en la adultez tiene mucho de Alta Fidelidad y otro tanto de slice of life, hoy en día tan en boga. Situado en contexto, debe haber sido un pionero en su mezcla de género, pero hoy parece superado por el hipsterismo. Sin embargo, lo que aún hace deliciosa esta lectura es el increíbl ...more
ash newton
Jan 13, 2016 ash newton rated it liked it
Shelves: novigraafix
in telling the story about a handful of young artists and writers living out their post-college years, it doesnt actually get into their creative struggles so much as how adverse conditions in their living sifuations, fear of commitment, alcohol, jealousy, confusion, fear of rejection, economic circumstances and strained family relationships create frustrations that eclipse people's ability to produce the work they'd like to and that theyre ultimately capable of. all the characters are limited b ...more
Shayna Ross
Mar 05, 2014 Shayna Ross rated it it was amazing
This is one of the more impressive graphic novels I have read in a long time. It's unfortunate that many people can't view a comic for its story, rather than "how good the characters looks," since the aspects of the story really draws you in. The particular book will generally only appeal to a certain age group since it's a story that you just "get it" by your own experience.

That being said, this is about a bunch of 20-something's living in New York City in the late 90s or early 00s. Long story
...more
Racheal
Nov 10, 2008 Racheal rated it liked it
This was one of those books that I originally gave four stars, but after thinking about it for a while I had to bump it down to three. I definitely enjoyed it--it's funny, the illustrations are charming and the characters are likeable (and in the case of the character who works at a bookstore, VERY relatable). I just had problems with the pacing. The storylines I enjoyed most got a lot less time than the one I didn't care for. Also, I felt that it started out with a definite main character, Sher ...more
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Alex Robinson was born in the Bronx on 8 August. He grew up in Yorktown Heights, New York where he graduated high school in 1987. His first job upon graduation was washing dishes in a gourmet deli and it was while working there he decided that maybe college was a pretty good idea afterall.

He spent one year at SUNY Brockport and then transferred to an art school in New York City, where he majored
...more
More about Alex Robinson...

Other Books in the Series

Box Office Poison (6 books)
  • Bop!: More Box Office Poison
  • Malas Ventas 1 - ¡Ríndete Dorothy!
  • Malas Ventas 3 - La casa de Tweed
  • Malas Ventas 2 - El regreso de Irving Flavor
  • Malas ventas 4 - La despedida de Jane y Stephen

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“Most friendships, if the end at all, end not by earthquake, but by erosion. Your time together, which you used to take for granted, becomes something you need to schedule.
Slowly you're aware that the easy intimacy you shared got lost somewhere. You talk more and more about the past.”
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