Review written by forum member MegaHentai.
Publisher: Pixie Trix
MSRP: $10.99 US
- strong humour
- excellent art
- limited availability
- shipping techniques need improvement
Ménage à 3 is one of the best webcomics running today. Many webcomics support themselves with occasional print collections of the strips; Ménage à 3 released its first earlier this year.
Wanna-be comic book artist Gary lives in Montreal, where he works in a call center. He comes home from work one day to learn that his two roommates are moving out so they can get a place of their own. With no other way to pay his rent, Gary quickly takes on two new roomies — and as luck would have it, they’re both gorgeous women. Zii is a rock musician with a taste for hot man-on-man action.
(Click to enlarge)
Blonde amazon Didi has the body of a goddess and the personality of an angel. She is enormously popular with the boys, as well as the customers at the restaurant where she works and she also enjoys dancing.
It’s not a particularly strong premise, but writers Gisèle Lagacé and David “Dave Zero” Lumsdon work miracles with it. Ménage à 3 presents a kind of sexually-idealized worldview; nearly everyone has some kind of kink, and the majority of characters are bisexual. Zii’s obsession with gay men is a particularly effective running gag throughout the series.
The series is presented in a series of strips, usually four panels each, which connect together into story arcs. The overall storyline sees the three main characters getting to know each other. Zii learns that Gary is a 29-year-old virgin, and vows to get him laid. Didi runs into an old boyfriend and brings him home for a night of fun and frolic. Zii runs into an old girlfriend, and inadvertently handcuffs her to Gary. Didi comes to a stunning realization about her sexuality, but manages to get the details wrong. It’s a lot like what Three’s Company might have looked like if it had been (a) shown on cable and (b) actually funny.
Lagacé doubles as the series artist. The art features a lot of clean linework, sort of like something Dan DeCarlo might have produced if he’d been heavily influenced by anime. Throughout the series, Lagacé shows a strong ability to translate physical comedy to the printed page. All art is presented in black and white.
Ménage à 3 Volume 1 is sold only through the series’ website via mail order. PayPal is preferred, but money orders can be negotiated. The high-end Special Edition, which came with four colour postcards and the creators’ signatures, was limited to pre-orders only, and is no longer in print.
I wouldn’t normally bring this up in a review, but it seems relevant for a company that distributes its product only by mail order. The books are shipped in bubble-wrap envelopes that are slightly too small for the job. My copy arrived with significant crumpling on the upper spine, as though the book had ben dropped on that corner. I’m not sure what the solution to this problem might be; larger envelopes would be a good experiment for the eventual Volume 2, though the cardboard packages used by Amazon and Best Buy might be overkill for a self-publisher.
Ménage à 3 Volume 1 is highly recommended for those who like their humour pervy and frequent. Most of the material in the book is available for free online, but the new long-form chapter is funny on its own — and besides, you can never go wrong putting a few bucks in the pockets of independent artists.