In a world where few can take a joke and all roads lead to someone being polarized, Garth Ennis can be found marching to the beat of his own drum. Never one to shy away from being crass, or daring, or ridiculous, Ennis has once again picked up the baton of laughter to give us irreverent humor that mixes alcohol, clowns, and chimpanzees. It’s the kind of delirium you wouldn’t typically associate with a guy who could probably stand in for James Bond. Which is what makes the laughter contagious. In this exclusive interview, writer Garth Ennis hints at the madness to come, and how fact-checkers need not apply.
Jimmy’s Bastards Volume 1 (978-1-935002-71-0) will be avilable February 2018.
Vince Brusio: Wild adult humor seems to be something that will stick to Jimmy’s Bastards. Humor in the vein of what you did with A Man Called Kev and The Boys. Is it safe to say that this kind of irreverent swagger will pollute the pages of this new book?
Garth Ennis: I'd say it's a few steps further into left field than either of those two. Not as far as A Train Called Love or Dicks, though. Perhaps it hovers around the same level as Code Pru, although the subject matter is very different.
Vince Brusio: Who is Jimmy Regent? The man behind the smile? The cover image shows that alcohol goes hand-in-hand with his firearm. Are we wrong to say that he’s intoxicated daily with no fear of a breathalyzer test?
Garth Ennis: Jimmy can handle his booze and then some. He drinks the way his hero Churchill did; he's essentially pickled himself to the point that further intake makes no difference. Or as was said of the great man, he was no alcoholic because no alcoholic could drink that much.
Vince Brusio: A variant cover image by Russ Braun offers us a glimpse of what appears to be a young deranged Abe Lincoln and a Bedtime For Bonzo reject that got spliced with Krusty The Clown. Any way you can offer us some insight as to what we’re seeing?
Garth Ennis: Those are the arch-villains Theophilus Trigger and Bobo the Bastard, the Chimp Clown. Theo's superpower is that he can recite every godawful thing that might have happened to you until he hits on the one that did, at which point you're triggered and you're sent crawling off into your safe space. Bobo is born of my loathing of both chimps and clowns — the funny thing is that one of my best friends actually is a clown. None of them are chimps, though.
Vince Brusio: What was the background noise in your life when you were writing this book? What was going on in your environment that fueled the drag race for cranking out Jimmy’s Bastards?
Garth Ennis: For some time now I've noticed the liberal left getting caught up in silly games of identity politics and social commentary, games that not enough other people want to play. They seem determined to hang onto the moral high ground no matter what the cost — depressingly familiar ground for the left, I'm sorry to say. I want them to win, but the appallingly pompous, humorless road they're stuck on seems to lead only to defeat.
Vince Brusio: How will the world of Jimmy’s Bastards live beyond the initial story arc? Or is it too early to ask such a question because Jimmy’s hangovers are contagious?
Garth Ennis: Bit too early to say on that one. We'll see how things go. I certainly like writing Jimmy and his supporting cast enough to do more.
Vince Brusio writes about comics, and writes comics. He is the long-serving Editor of PREVIEWSworld.com, the creator of PUSSYCATS, and encourages everyone to keep the faith...and keep reading comics.