Jason Viola’s Herman the Manatee comic strip started with a simple premise: Herman is a manatee who is afraid of getting hit by boats, and who invariably gets hit by a boat.
In this first issue, we meet Herman, it really seems to him the universe is against him, throwing boats at him. As things develop, his theory is proved right. Friends encourage Herman to embrace the boats’ collisions, strangers trick him into getting struck by boats, even god thinks it’s fun to watch Herman get hit by a boat.
And it is fun to watch these joke variations on a simple theme. The gags are funny, and it’s interesting to watch Jason build on the basic idea of the comic.
“Viola is a good gagsmith with an appealing line who gets a lot of mileage out of being extremely cruel to his characters for no particular reason.”
-Rob Clough, High-Low Comics [Full Reveiw]
“Viola’s artwork is crisp and clean with a pleasing balance of black and white spaces.”
-Richard Krauss, Midnight Fiction [Full Review]
“…brutally unforgiving and undeniably hilarious.”
-Pop Omnivore, National Geographic [Full Review]