Bagge, Peter

Former editor of R. Crumb’s Weirdo anthology who set a new standard for the comics of social cruelty, Bagge’s signature flourish consists of having his cartoon creations run the emotional gamut from mildly annoyed to totally enraged in three panels or less.

After publishing his first comics in 1980 and moving to Seattle in 1984, Bagge developed his best-known titles, Neat Stuff (1985-1989) and Hate (1990-1998) for Fantagraphics Books. Both Neat Stuff and Hate document the trials and tribulations of protoslacker Buddy Bradley, a young man who languishes in low-life scumhood, a slave to cultural marginalia.

As was the case with Like R. Crumb (who called Bagge “one of the great cartoonists of the post-Crumb generation”), Bagge initially derived much of his cachet from his association with an audience he held in bemused contempt — in his case, the indie-rock world: Bagge created album art for Seattle’s Sub Pop label and his take on the city’s grunge scene (“I scream, you scream, we all scream for heroin”) became a popular T-shirt.

In contrast to the audience that first embraced him, Bagge actually prefers bubblegum music and even created an illustrated CD of his recommended favorites for EMI.

Bagge has teamed with Gilbert Hernandez to create Yeah!, a comic book about a girl group from New Jersey that is the most popular band in outer space, and with Dana Gould to create Rock ’n’ Roll Dad, an online animated series. He also contributes regularly to Suck.com.

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