The first collection of Ed Luce’s self-published comic book, Wuvable Oaf, is presented in this beautiful hardcover edition released by Fantagraphics. I had heard a few comic book fans speak highly of this book and when I was offered a copy of it by the UK distributor Turnaround UK, I jumped at the chance, excited to read it.
Now, I was immediately blown away by the hyper-colourful front and back cover art of this book, featuring Oaf, a butt-load of kitties, and some side-characters from several of the strips inside. It’s awesome and immediately grabs attention.
The story of Wuvable Oaf tells of Oaf, a very-large, very-hairy and god-damn “wuvable” ex-pro wrestler who lives in San Francisco raising cats and making dolls that he stuffs with his considerable body hair. So far, so peculiar. Oh, this is just the start. We follow Oaf as he tries to find companionship in the city. He meets friends, see’s bands, goes on dates, and tries to find love. There are side glipses of the world of cats that exist at his house. The first half of the book, maybe more, is a long story about what I’ve mentioned above, but the other half features a load of stand-alone mini-stories/strips that cover various things. Monsters, more kitties, sex, drugs and hair.
I’ve heard this book labelled as a romantic comedy with a big gay difference, and I guess it is. It’s strange and it’s hilarious, but it’s also pretty sweet and cute too. The artwork and story-telling is addictive and superb, and I just loved it. I’m not sure if this is for everyone, probably not, but I think there is a hell of a lot of joy to be found in the pages of this glorious book.
If you like hairy guys, pro-wrestling, cats, heavy metal music and comic books, or even just one of these things, then you’ll likely find something to like here. So good.
Wuvable Oaf is out now and is published by Fantagraphics.