It’s officially the holidays. That means good things, like time shared with friends, giving gifts to those you love, and copious amounts of alcohol. It also means bad things, like the overwhelming tidal wave of sugary red-and-white cheer-vomit striking the shores of our taste with all the mercy of a thousand angry drunks with sledgehammers.
Thankfully, comic book writers are just as glurge-allergic as the rest of us, and have turned out some cheerful stories of holiday violence and misery. Here’s a followup to last year’s celebration of bad taste.
The Punisher Christmas Special: 2008
Every year or two, Frank celebrates the holidays the only way he knows how: By dressing up as Santa and killing people. Really, what’s he going to do, ring a bell on a street corner?
Jason Aaron’s hilarious retelling of the birth of Christ has to rank near the top of the list, though, especially since, being as it’s a MAX book… well, you can guess what happens to pretty much everybody.
Sin City: Silent Night
So titled because it both takes place over Christmas and features almost no dialogue or sound effects, it’s pretty much just Frank Miller telling the stark, spare story of Marv saving a little girl from death on Christmas. It’s also some of Miller’s best artwork in his entire career, which helps considerably.
JLA: 2000 Light Years To Christmas!
This story from the ’70s is notable for two reasons: One, it’s where Red Tornado first adopts his daughter and two, it’s the single most freaking depressing thing DC put out in the entire 1970s. Three alien wise men are delivering three presents to an alien messiah when they lose one. It lands near a little girl in the Middle East whose entire family has been killed, and, not unreasonably on discovering she has godlike power, she goes to kick some ass. At a certain point in the story it looks like they’re actually going to bump off a kid in a DC comic.
OK, so she gets adopted, but until that point, you kind of wonder what the home life was like for the editorial staff at DC that this was their idea of a holiday celebration.
Mike Norton’s Battlepug
Actually a webcomic collected by Dark Horse, Battlepug is about a very serious Conan knockoff whose village is destroyed by a cute seal and then, as the last Kinmundian, he gets enslaved by Santa Claus and used for menial labor and arena combat.
He ultimately burns the North Pole to the ground. The series in general is often lunatic, but this might be its most hilariously over the top mocking of Christmas since Lobo told a small child it was her fault Santa was murdered.
Seriously. He did that.
Share your favorites below; there’s plenty of anti-holiday cheer to go round.