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The Wild Kingdom (Or Else)

3.29  ·  Rating Details ·  176 Ratings  ·  36 Reviews
The new master of Comics Experimentalism returns with his Everyman, Glenn Ganges

Standing out among his contemporaries, Kevin Huizenga's subtle mastery of the medium has earned him countless accolades and awards. His comics are at once straightforward and experimental, serious and funny. His character is the suburban everyman Glenn Ganges, a modern-day Dagwood Bumstead, who
Hardcover, 108 pages
Published August 31st 2010 by Drawn and Quarterly (first published 2010)
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(showing 1-30)
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David Schaafsma
My library tells me: "... original collection during the fall of 1999 and early 2000 (self-published as Super-monsters #12) ... In 2006, an expanded edition of the work was published by Drawn & Quarterly as Or Else #4"-- In 2010, this was released as a still expanded hardcover as a tenth anniversary edition.

The Wild Kingdom would appear to be a PBS Nature special and the intro sets it up that way, and there is a fake index that follows it. The idea would seem to be a technical introduction t
Sam Quixote
Jul 22, 2011 Sam Quixote rated it liked it
"The Wild Kingdom" is a reprint of a series of strips Kevin Huizenga compiled in 2000 and reprinted again in 2006. This time they're given the deluxe edition as they're collected in hardback, though the book is almost pocket sized.

Inside the strips revolve around the theme of the natural world and humanity's correlation to it. About half of the book features no words as we see Glen Ganges go about his daily life but seeing animals do the same. He encounters squirrels, birds, his cat and whatnot
Apr 02, 2010 Mza rated it really liked it
Recommended to Mza by: Nobody
Shelves: 2010
great but sad because I've been looking forward to this for a long time w/o realizing it's a reprint of material I've read before in Or Else.

This is Huizenga at his least restrained -- rapid-fire bursts of cartooning that cohere around a handful of themes: 21st-century marketing strategies, the mysteries of the natural world, and the helplessness of critters in the face of forces too big for them to perceive. There's a lot of humour in the book, though it is undercut by a persistent melancholia.
Aug 06, 2012 Rach rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2012, graphic-novels
There were a few moments I chuckled, but for the most part, I just didn't get it. Maybe I'm not intellectual enough to appreciate it, or maybe I just get bored too easily. Regardless, my favorite thing about this one was it was short.
Dec 18, 2015 Batmark rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction

This digest-sized (5" x 6") collection is even more surreal than Huizenga's other works, making a description of the plot difficult. Broadly, this issue deals with the fates of some of nature's smaller creatures (such as squirrels and pigeons) in our modern, human-dominated world. Huizenga also satirizes the overblown, nearly impossible claims of advertisements, creates a few fictional kinds of apples (lifesaver gold, Eden's choice, etc.) and "fancy pigeon
Not sure I can give this a starred rating. I read it twice through in one sitting. It made me chuckle at various points. I have no idea what it's trying to say. Commercialism, nature, death were the obvious themes.

There is no narrative, which isn't so much a problem, but there's not really any connective tissue that holds the whole thing together. Still, I'm certainly intrigued by it, and I'm sure it will continue to insert itself into my thoughts now and again in the next few weeks. Not sure w
Joey Dhaumya
Nov 05, 2014 Joey Dhaumya rated it it was ok
There is a fine line between experimental and non-linear wankery. Since it is non-linear that fine line is a squiggle.
Jun 30, 2011 Sonic rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this strange look

at the world

around us

... ?

Jan 18, 2017 Stef rated it did not like it
WTF. If this book smugly exists just to piss me off, it succeeded in its mission. The beautiful hardcover and vintage vibe belie a chaotic collection of nonsensical "stories" highlighting some of the bummers life has to offer. In one, legitimately nothing interesting happens to a boring guy, and then the piece is over. In another, every spazzy panel is different than the next, like each belongs in a different cartoon. It really does seem like its purpose is to depress, confuse, and aggravate.
Aug 14, 2016 Liam rated it did not like it
Shelves: graphic-novel
I picked this up knowing nothing about it.

I read it once, slept and reread it after reflection after waking. I read some reviews, and then I read it again.

I realised that despite the fairly nice artwork and pacing between the panels it conveys absolutely nothing worthwhile. I often laugh aloud a lot when reading to overly dark or genuine stuff, but I read this in silence. The sense of humour was off, the jokes were bad. I can try explain. As in, the only truly comical thing about this is its inc
Felipe Chiaramonte
Aug 13, 2011 Felipe Chiaramonte rated it really liked it
Este quadrinho contém tanto ruído de informação e experimentalismo narrativo que ou você pode considerar o autor alguém que não está falando nada com nada ou um sujeito sagaz. Prefiro pensar que trata-se do segundo caso, pois o ritmo quase incosciente do desvelar dos quadros, do que se é mostrado gratuitamente e das conexões aparentemente dissonantes entre partes sucessivas tornam a abordagem abstrata - o que é algo um tanto unusual para quadrinhos e merece aqui reconhecimento. O tema é o reino ...more
Sep 17, 2012 Loren rated it it was ok
Shelves: graphic-novels
"The Wild Kingdom" had some winners, but contained mainly losers. It tried so hard to be a deep piece of work, but never became one. He was trying to say something about consumer culture, but really didn't say anything noteworthy.

I like Kevin Huizenga's work and can see how he got to where he is through some of these earlier pieces. I would have been happy paying 5 bucks for a zine containing work of this quality, but preordering this for $20 left me feeling like I shouldn't preorder future book
Jun 22, 2014 HBalikov rated it liked it
A fun, thought-provoking, obscure, intricate, farcical musing on life and humanity.

Huizenga is not a sniper, he stands there blasting away with his shotgun at anything that moves. One moment he is giving us a screed on advertising and the next he is asking whether science is really helping to make the world better. His artwork is also highly variable with some parts realistic, others impressionistic, and others poster-educational.

All-in-all, I don't regret digesting it, but not sure I will go ba
Sep 10, 2010 J. rated it really liked it
I think there that Huizenga is a genius. That said, I think the character Glenn Ganges is at his best when he is interacting with people. That's not to say the sort of silent film sequence with Glenn in this book isn't amazing (it is incredible), but the parts of this story that drift from Glenn into seeming abstraction just plain aren't as enjoyable as when Glenn is interacting with people. Absolute genius book, but I have to admit I was hoping for more of Glenn interacting with other character ...more
Jan 17, 2016 Molly rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novel, art, 2016
Unrelated vignettes, for the most part. Often found myself thinking that a few of the comics were good stand-ins for an episode of Welcome to Night Vale. Huizenga's a talented artist, equally good at creating cute animals, intricate details, and managing to unsettle the hell out of someone with just a few panels. I'm not as wild about Glenn Ganges as his other stuff, but there's plenty of both here.
Jason Bradshaw
Oct 01, 2016 Jason Bradshaw rated it liked it
Such a strange and wonderful book. Not something you can altogether try to make narrative sense out of - this is more poetry than prose - but the experience of reading it and letting it take you wherever it wants to go is kinda surreal and mesmerizing.

I especially liked the part where the car flew into the plane and blew it up, just like that scene in Its a Good Day to Die Hard.
Jul 12, 2016 Lauren rated it it was amazing
Adored this. Melancholy, true, it depicts the interconnectedness of life through vignettes of pain and longing. I could almost hear the violin playing throughout. Yet, the images are fresh, modern, at times darkly humorous and together they yield to a new appreciation for life's mysteries- the wild world around us. Highly recommend.
Nov 14, 2010 Nancy rated it liked it
Shelves: graphic-novel
A palm-sized rock struck with bits of quartz: skip the awkward beginning (as the author himself suggests) and go right to watching the distant cat play-kill the unseen bug. Yes!: seed catalog spoofs, landscapes, diagrams, that one guy's bee-passion, and the way themes and elements can loop from one story to the next. I want more!
Mar 30, 2011 Kate rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics
This book has an almost stream of consciousness feel, placing it firmly in the realm of experimental comics. A critique of consumer culture, an examination of our relationship with animals and some made up facts about them, and a nod to philosophy made this a strange but intriguing read. I know exactly who to recommend this to.
Emilia P
Jul 30, 2012 Emilia P rated it liked it
Shelves: comic-books
Sad, quiet, and colorful, I'll always pick up Huizenga's books, even if I'm not sure why ... The stories here are not particularly memorable, but do involve animals, and some existential malaise (a term I have latched onto just today). So it goes. Carry on K.H.
Sep 06, 2010 Sara rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics-gn
Wow, what an odd book. Definitely more abstract than other huizenga books for most of it, the tone and ideas still hit me just right. A quick read, and easily one of my favorite Kevin H books, though not the first one I'd recommend to someone who had never read him.
Owen Curtsinger
Nov 12, 2010 Owen Curtsinger rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Stunning! A humorous and philosophical exploration of human perception, media, and the inertia of everyday life. Quite possibly the strangest and yet most satisfying graphic novel I've ever read. I can't wait for the next Hot New Thing©!
Aug 11, 2014 Kim rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites, english
The title explains what the book is about.
Publisher's Weekly's review of the work is well written.
Sep 28, 2013 Rory rated it it was ok
Never came together for me, never seemed more than a sum of its parts. Sometimes lovely but too often bleak for no convincing reason. Dunno--just didn't push any of my buttons.
Jan 05, 2011 Damon rated it really liked it
Huizenga rarely disappoints. Weird and a bit schizophrenic here, and while I prefer his more linear Glenn Ganges stuff, this is still a good read. Definitely the best thing since sliced balls.
Oct 03, 2012 Ben rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics
Not a big fan of this guy's art but he is undeniably a master of the medium. I like the way he conveys the abject absurdity of the culture.
Jul 30, 2011 Penelope rated it it was ok
I really love Huizenga's work but this wasn't my favorite...I did find it funny and clever at times, and it's nice little hardcover with a simple lovely design. I just didn't get into it very much.
Gracek rated it it was amazing
Feb 04, 2015
Sean A
Sean A rated it liked it
Jul 15, 2013
Adam Wilson
Adam Wilson rated it it was ok
May 20, 2015
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Kevin Huizenga was born in 1977 in Harvey, IL and spent most of his childhood in South Holland, IL, near Chicago. He attended college in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and moved to St. Louis in 2000 where he lives and works.

He began drawing comics in high school, xeroxing his first issue (with friends) at the neighborhood Jewel Osco in 1993. Since that time he's made approximately 30 more. In 2001 the Co
More about Kevin Huizenga...

Other Books in the Series

Or Else (4 books)
  • Or Else #2
  • Or Else #3
  • Or Else #4
  • Or Else #5

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