At CAB this year I was talking to a few people asking, “Whatever happened to Sam Alden?” Alden burst on the scene a few years ago with an astonishing leap from the Best American Comics’s short listed Haunter to such disturbing and unforgettable books as It Never Happened Again and New Construction: Two More Stories . But then, like far too many of our Finest Young Cartoonists, he went off to work on Adventure Time and began a life of regular meals and tax withholding. And as so often happens, his comics output dropped.
BUT HE’S BACK! With Sledgehammer Pt. 1 presented by Hazlitt, which ahs become a real outpost of great comics of late. The tagline is “If there’s stuff in there you want, grab it. I’m gonna literally burn everything.” and if you’re wondering if it’s as good as his past work, oh yeah. A brken family where the mother is tearing down her ex’s study with a sldegehammer while the daughter is making a creepy, violent cartoon on her computer…meanwhile someone or something that looks like Andy Warhol is hanging around the house? What could possibly go wrong?
Family dynamics are always fraught in Alden’s work, and Sledgehammer looks to pound them to rubble.