This month’s Magazinester saves the best for first: in conjunction with an art show, Needles and Pens has fantastic zines by Edie Fake on display. Rico McTaco stars a four-legged dyke not averse to carrot strap-ons and dizzying black and white lines Bridget Riley might admire. Issue four of Gaylord Phoenix adds color and erotic examinations by a quartet of wizards with entwined beards to the many-sexed picture.
In Matt Furie’s boy’s club, Andy, Bret, Landwolf, and Pepe bro down with Nintendo, pizza breakfasts, and T-shirt jokes when they aren’t fending off dust mites. The hug department in boy’s club is always open. Dead Pets No. 1 relates tales of tarantula starvation, ferrets crushed by futons, black-eyed white mice slain by children’s tea-party merriment, and many ill-fated betta fish. The centerfold lists five dead pet movies. Published in deluxe gold-embossed color by Blue Q, Killer Queen: The Freddie Mercury Story‘s terrific illustrations portray Mercury’s overbite and stamp collection. Issue 116 of Belladonna presents Dodie Bellamy’s Mother Montage, a combination of writer and subject matter (one’s mother, not motherhood) that sparks a demonologist’s wit the kind that doesn’t pander. John McCain’s gizzard does not escape unscathed.
Best free mag honors go to Arthur for following Erick Morse’s superb Fantomas survey with an extensive critical hurrah for the music of Sparks. (Also, Arthur‘s comics page features Furie and mocks blogs.) Expensive-mag-to-browse honors go to Aperture for features on James Bidgood, Robert Frank, and Trevor Paglen, and a wild series of Iraq War vets portraits. A cheap raspberry to $29-and-up rags such as Paradis, Purple Fashion, UOVO, and Fantastic Man: most or all feature the saggy yet nonexistent ass of the overexposed, under-talented Terence Koh.