The Beginning of the Long Road for Generation X
It's become a fairly familiar story by now: Generation X, squeezed in between the massive Baby Boomer generation, and their even more generation of Millennial children, pretty much got screwed. Graduating from high school in the late 80s and college in the early 90s, during the George Bush years they ended up with a flailing economy when they were trying to get a start in life, and the Boomers who had spent the first decade of their adult lives as hippies, 'turning on, tuning in, and dropping out' suddenly got concerned about how much money they'd made (or more accurately hadn't made) in life and became 'yuppies' and refused to retire - thus leaving very few job openings for 90s twentysomethings who had to turn to crappy retail jobs for which they were overqualified for and which they hated. And, paradoxically, the final slap in the face: the Boomers then labeled them as 'slackers' for still living at home and working retail. (Of course many went back to school only to graduate with more debt during the George Bush (#2) presidency and an even broader, deeper and longer lasting recession - but that's another story).
Box Office Poison does a fairly good job of dramatizing the tensions and angst GenX-ers felt in the 1990s, such as trying to live in New York City on a $5/hour job (even in the 1990s), or having to deal with annoying thirtysomething managers, and this issue in particular, 'Boiling Frog' which focuses on lead character Sherman's job in a bookstore (based on creator Alex Robinson's actual experiences) deals with the 90s work life of Xers. Sure, this is fairly familiar stuff at this point, movies like 'Clerks', 'Slacker' and 'Reality Bites' all worked similar angles, but it's nice to see it done in comic form, and it definitely makes you sympathize with the characters and wonder what's in their future.
Given that a whole new generation is going through this right now, Box Office Poison continues to be relevant and enjoyable to a whole new audience.