170 pages ATOW
Updates roughly every 9.765 days (read: I have no idea. As completed, I guess)
Boxer Hockey is a sport, believe it or not. Not a real sport, of course, it would get banned from public television by the name alone. But grown men running about in their underwear and hitting live frogs into nets is apparently both accepted and popular in the world of Boxer Hockey.
The comic revolves around Team Mekpen and their misadventures. I would say that the comic is about the sport, but it’s not really true. Rather, it’s screwing around with the characters.
As silly as it may sound, I’m very happy that Hesse didn’t make it into a “sport comic”. Frankly, the pages on which the team actually plays the game are very bland compared to the rest of them. Perhaps it’s because the comic builds itself on humor and the game parts aren’t very funny. Or perhaps it’s because I’m not really into sports and can’t be asked to care whether these people win or lose. I mean, is this a championship? Are they set for life if they win, or perhaps the losers get violently murdered? None of it matter when it’s just an endlessly repeating cycle.
Boxer Hockey shines outside the stadium, mixing three parts humor with one part dramatic intrigue. I found myself checking the volume of my laughter sometimes while reading it; there’s definitely some shining moments. More importantly, the drama isn’t overpowering either, which is always nice.
Some of the side stories drag on a bit, and there was some dull silliness involving a bear, but it passes relatively quickly.
I also like the art style. While it’s a bit odd that every single male in the BH universe has a chin you could hold a banquet on, it’s generally well-done and detailed. The sports sections slip into a sketchy black-and-white style that breaks up the flow, but those sections are mediocre anyways so I won’t hold it against the comic. But the characters are expressive and the pictures are pretty and I can’t really ask for more, now can I?
The only thing that really bugged me about BH was the characters. Yes, they all say their lines well and some of the jokes played off their personalities are pretty funny, but sometimes the “Oh, the kid’s a moron!” or “Ha, Skip, you’re such a card.” parts get a bit old. More the former than the latter, though, there are Stupid Kid Jokes strewn everywhere like the factory that made them suffered a violent explosion.
To conclude, BH was an entertaining but short-lived romp that I thoroughly enjoyed. The sports sections were somewhat dull, but the rest of the story more than makes up for it, and it’s something that you should definitely check out.