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Thursday, October 23, 2014

Comic Review: Battlepug: Sit, Stay, Die! Volume 3

BATTLEPUG, Volume 3, “Sit, Stay, Die!”
Writer:Mike Norton

Artist:Mike Norton
Colorist:Allen Passalaqua
Cover Artist:Mike Norton
Genre: Action/Adventure, Fantasy, Humor
Dark Horse Comics
Publication Date: October 29, 2014
Format:FC, 72 Pages; HC, 12" x 8.5"
Age range:14
The Last Kinmundian and his trusty Battlepug have survived many trials on their way to confront the evil beast mage known as Catwulf, but their encounter with the Dead Walker may be their last. The third installment of this Eisner-award winning-webcomic sees our heroes climbing to the very brink of death. Will they slip over the edge?

Battlepug Volume 3: Sit. Stay. Die! collects the entire third year of the webcomic hit, Battlepug, and includes exclusive bonus material!


Guest Reviewers Toby the Pug and Queenie the Pug, co-owners of author Dani Harper (who may or may not get a word in edgewise)

QUEENIE – “First off, I’d like to express our appreciation to I Smell Sheep for having the good sense to bring in experts to review this book. As pugs ourselves, we’re able to provide readers with the ultimate perspective on the latest volume of BATTLEPUG.”

TOBY – “I wanted to say that! I’m the one who’s done a review before, so I should get to talk FIRST!”

QUEENIE - “Pfft! I’m more than twice your age, so I have seniority. Plus we’re in a hurry, because it’s HALFTIME, people! This is already the THIRD of five planned books.”

TOBY – “Five? Only five?” *counts on his front toes* “Um, um, Volume 1 was “Blood and Drool”, and, um, Volume 2 was “This Savage Bone”. And so this one makes, um, three – OMIGOSH THERE’S ONLY TWO TOES LEFT!” *runs in panicked circles*

Dani Harper*clears throat* “Mike Norton is Battlepug’s creator, writer and artist. And he’s won both an Eisner Award and a Harvey Award for this webcomic.”

QUEENIE – “That’s because there are pugs in the story, of course. You’d think more writers would take the hint. Why, if a pug had been written into the script for The Lone Ranger, it would have pushed the movie into Oscar territory.”

TOBY – “I’ll bet the awards don’t matter to Mr. Norton. He probably created Battlepug because it’s FUN.”

Dani Harper – “He’s certainly very talented. The story keeps rolling out zany surprises as it reveals more about the characters. And the quality of the artwork continues to be amazing.”

QUEENIE – “Pugs are excellent subjects. Including them elevates practically anything into an art form and—”

TOBY – “I have a Battlepug t-shirt!”

QUEENIE – “I keep telling you it’s for people – that’s why it doesn’t fit right. And stop interrupting me.”

TOBY – “Stop being bossy. I told you, I’m the one who’s reviewed before, so I get to talk! Battlepug is about a barbarian on a quest to find the villain who destroyed his people. And instead of a horse, he rides a giant noble pug –

QUEENIE – “Did you notice that nobody knows the name of the warrior?”

TOBY – “But we know the name of the pug! That’s the important part. He’s big and brave and his name is Sprinkles! And he has a mighty battle cry: BRAP! BRAP! BRAP! BRAP!” *leaps wildly across the furniture*

QUEENIE – “And we know the names of the friends that the warrior and his pug have made along the way – “

TOBY*still bounding along the top of the couch* “BRAP! BRAP! BRAP!”

QUEENIE – “There’s the old man, Scribbly, and the little girl, Bryony, and the swordmaster, Black Sasha.”

TOBY*panting* “And the best thing of all? The BESTEST thing? Sprinkles isn’t the only pug!”

Dani Harper – “That’s true. The whole story is being woven by a voluptuous girl named Moll who seems to be a prisoner in a high tower. She never wears anything except her henna tattoos and her only companions are a French bulldog named Colfax, and a pug named Mingo.”

TOBY – “I like Mingo. Colfax is a meanie.”

QUEENIE – “You said that last time. I read your review.”

TOBY – “Well, it’s even more true now. But there’s way cool stuff in this book too. The Warrior and his faithful Battlepug are up against this guy with a whole army of skeletons, and then the monster weasels come! And you’ve got to see the Skull Monkey!“

QUEENIE – “Let’s not forget there are some truly profound lessons in this story about magic and the importance of keeping the balance.”

TOBY – “And then we learn about PILLOWS! I had no idea they were so dangerous!”

QUEENIE – “Riiight.” *hides a pillow behind her back* “But let’s not give everything away – we don’t want to spoil it for the readers.”

Dani Harper – “I think it’s safe to say this book contains a critical turning point for the Warrior. He suddenly realizes that his desire for revenge isn’t the most important thing anymore.”

TOBY – “And then there was the gigantic – and then, BAM, the— the— fuzzy…wanna…zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.”

QUEENIE *removes pillow from Toby’s face* “I SAID we weren’t going to give away the story!”

Dani Harper*confiscates pillow* “Ahem. We need to tell people that they can Like Battlepug on Facebook at And if they want to read the strip as it’s created, they can check out Mr. Norton’s commentary and maybe even shop in the Battlepug store at*shakes Toby awake*

TOBY – “Wha – what? Where were we?”

Dani Harper*whispering* “It’s time for the rating, give the rating!”

TOBY – “Four thumbs up!”

QUEENIE – “I knew he wouldn’t do it right. We’re on I Smell Sheep – they don’t use thumbs! And why isn’t it five? The book’s got TWO pugs! That puts it practically off the scale.”

Dani Harper – “Sorry, but we’ve had this conversation before. It’s not fair to non-pugs, and we want to be known as balanced reviewers.”

TOBY – “Yeah!” *sticks tongue out at Queenie* “So it gets four ‘who’s a giant dead skull monkey killer?’ sheep!” *whispers* “But pugs will know it’s really worth a five, right?”

Dani Harper and QUEENIE – “Right!”