Feeble Attempts is a one-shot comic book that collects odds and ends from cartoonist Jeffrey Brown’s work in anthology and mini-comics. Top Shelf describes the works here as “some of Jeffrey Brown’s favorite anthology and mini-comic stories…” There are two key questions to be asked about Feeble Attempts. Is it a must-have for fans of Brown? No, but it’s a “you’ll want to read this.” Secondly, is the material in this comic the good stuff? The answers is a double-affirmative “Hell, yeah.”
Feeble Attempts starts off a bit slow because of the material at the beginning, but there are some true gems in here. The eight-page “Cycloctopus vs. Quantum Mechanic” superhero tale here is indicative of Brown’s deft touch with old-fashioned Silver Age super heroes that read as if they came from the Golden Age. It’s rife with Stan Lee-like pseudo scientific babble, but the story has a feel of an old pulp tale. Pair that with the two-pager, “My Jesus is an Awesome Jesus,” and you’ve justified at least half the cover price.
There are also a few relationship shorts in here, and they’re as good as Brown’s other boyfriend/girlfriend tales. They, however, pale in comparison to “My Conspiracy to not Sell You the New ‘Garden State’ DVD,” which, like the film Clerks, should ring a painful but funny bell with anyone who has worked a minimum wage-type sales job. Actually, Feeble Attempts gets better in its second half. I didn’t know that Brown did politics, but after reading “2004 Year in Review,” I hope he does it again.