Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles #2
Writer: Mark Russell
Inker: Mark Morales
Penciller: Mike Feehan
Colorist: Paul Mounts
Letterer: Dave Sharpe
Publisher: DC Comics
Review by Greg Brothers
The first issue of the Snagglepuss Chronicles set up what Snagglepuss has been doing with his career and reveals his hidden life. Here in Snagglepuss Chronicles #2 we see Snagglepuss trying to move on from his recently ended Broadway play. He is working to make sure that his next play will be just as big of a hit as the last one, all while trying to help his close friend Huckleberry Hound deal with his fall from grace and the end of his marriage. As if that isn’t enough, he is also fighting off questions from the government, who are seeking his help in creating American propaganda plays and shows.
Anyone who has read any number of comics knows that politics have always been a part of the community. To his credit, Russell dives deep into politics in The Snagglepuss Chronicles #2. He embraces the real-life drama of the committee of Un-American Activities and applies it perfectly. Most people who have a basic knowledge of the Red Scare and McCarthyism remember it as Hollywood going after anyone who might be a communist. What people forget is that many marginalized groups were accused of being communist simply because of their everyday actions or for refusing to work with the government to create propaganda. The way that Russell takes all these ideas and intertwines them into the story draws the audience in and creates an emotional connection. The foreshadowing throughout Snagglepuss Chronicles #2 provides enough substance that as the story unfolds you feel true pain and fear for what Snagglepuss will be facing in the future.
As bleak as the probable future is for Snagglepuss, it is the story of Huckleberry Hound that brings the emotions forward. Huckleberry Hound was unhappy in his marriage and decided to step out on his wife. While not an ideal situation, it is something that normally would not turn to many heads in the 1950’s. However, it was the fact that his affair was with another man that lead to him having to keep the truth from getting out. The spiral downward shows a truly gut-wrenching and emotional story as his life intertwines with Snagglepuss’s artistic endeavors.
The art continues to impress within Snagglepuss Chronicles #2. The character designs make each character easily recognizable, which is good. However, it is the emotion that is shown throughout where the art shines. The parts with Huckleberry Hound are especially enhanced by the emotions that are portrayed through the designs.
Verdict: Buy it.
If you would have told me a couple of years ago that the Hanna-Barbara books from DC would be some of the most socially relevant books, I would have told you that you were crazy. Yet, here I am in 2018 and writing about The Snagglepuss Chronicles #2, telling you that you need to buy it. This book is tackling socially relevant issues through the lens of historical events. The Snagglepuss Chronicles #2 is filled with emotion, depth, and a social commentary. Buy this book!