Writer: Matt Miner
Artist: Sean Von Gorman
Publisher: Black Mask
Over the course of reading Toe Tag Riot we’ve learned more about how the band became zombies. They’ve already gone after modern Nazis and those involved in the Million Mom March. Matt Miner didn’t disappoint with the back story in this issue. Not only do we find out more details of their zombification, we also learn how Evie lost her arm. A point that made me laugh to myself. We also see more of Andy Hurley in this issue as he joins them in their zombie state before heading off to Kansas. They’re target city being the capitol, Topeka, home of the well known Westboro Baptist Church.
Miner surprised me with a few details that he added in this issue. He also addressed one thing that I wondered: how do you justify eating people as a zombie when you were a vegan in the human world? He chose to go after some “dudebros” in this issue, something I’m sure many people would like to do. One of my favorite things about his writing is that he’s consistent with the story and touches on things mentioned in the previous issues. When you read multiple titles at any given time it can be difficult to keep story lines straight.
In keeping with things that are consistent, Sean Von Gorman’s artwork keeps details in tact that are important to the characters. Even when replicating tattoos he still represents them in a way that’s recognizable from one panel to the next even if they’re not as detailed. You know that they’re present and in the correct place. I did have a minor freak out because I thought he switched some tattoos around, but I double checked and they were in fact correct. I also wasn’t aware that zombies had such a wide range of facial expressions. While I like zombie stories in general, in movies they tend to all have the same expression. Major props to Von Gorman for giving them some humanity in their appearance.
There are a couple of references that I really enjoyed in this issue. My favorite being a Freddie Mercury teddy bear, or Teddy Mercury as Miner chose to refer to him. For a story that’s set mostly in 2004, the clothing is so accurate. It’s almost like reliving summers at the Warped Tour dressed head to toe in clothes from Hot Topic.
This is a book I continually recommend to people. I went as far as to buy issue number one for a new employee at the comic shop where I work just to make sure he would give it a chance. I’ve found myself laughing, which isn’t something you expect from a book featuring zombies. It’s a nice departure from the post-apocalyptic story lines. My only complaint about this issue is that we don’t know who Leigh is or how she came to be in the mix. I’d like a tiny glimpse at her back story. Other than that, Miner and Von Gorman have produced a quality book that’s anti-hate and supportive of the LGBT community. I look forward to reading the next issues and hearing what others have thought about it.
“Toe Tag Riot #3” earns 9/10