Why You Should Read: The Amazing Screw On Head and Other Curious Objects

Posted by inferiorego (24714 posts) - - Show Bio

When the Comic Vine staff first started talking about doing this weekly feature, I asked myself "what are my favorite stories of all time?" Most of what came to mind first were these ultra-long Vertigo series that didn't fit the original idea of this feature, but that didn't stop me from writing about Y: THE LAST MAN. I walked over to my bookshelf in my office, which houses the trades for my favorite series, and I took a look. The first thing that caught my mind wasn't the giant, long story arc from Marvel or DC comics. It was the hardcover for a one-shot from Dark Horse by one of my favorite artists/writers, Mike Mignola. The book that caught my eye isn't just one of my favorite one-shots, it's also one of the funniest books I own: THE AMAZING SCREW-ON HEAD AND OTHER CURIOUS OBJECTS.

This Mike Mignola masterpiece was originally published, as a one-shot, back in 2002 at Dark Horse Comics. It won the 2003 Eisner Award for Best Humor Publication, and it's one of the most laugh-inducing books I've ever read. So what the heck is this book, anyway? THE AMAZING SCREW-ON HEAD is about a mechanical head that works for President Abraham Lincoln, solving mysteries. Like most of writer/artist Mike Mignola's work, it's heavy with worldly mythology and legend. Screw-On Head takes on Emperor Zombie and a giant monster stuck inside of a vegetable. It's an insanely funny story, but that's not all you get within this collection.

OTHER CURIOUS OBJECTS contains short stories, all written and drawn by Mike Mignola, except for "The Magician and the Snake," which the idea for the story originally came from Mignola's then 7 year old daughter, Katie. Lastly, the hardcover features some story notes and sketches of characters. While there really isn't a lot of connectivity to this whole hardcover collection, it still has a great flow to it all.

Emperor Zombie

While this is the first time, with this feature, that one of the staffers has selected an anthology and not a whole, epic story line, THE AMAZING SCREW-ON HEAD AND OTHER CURIOUS OBJECTS is the perfect "dip" into the world of Mike Mignola. Sure, he's mainly known for HELLBOY, but don't think of this anthology as a collection of "deep cuts." Think of this as a brilliant introduction into the world of Mignola, or as I call it "Mignoland."

Mike Mignola is one of the few duel threats in the industry. He has a phenomenal art style, and he is a fantastic storyteller. One could say that he truly is one of the few "auteurs" of the comic book industry. He has both a distinct art and storytelling style, which is showcased within this book. And while books like HELLBOY do have their own sense of humor, the Mignola treats the readers to one hilarious piece of writing with THE AMAZING SCREW-ON HEAD.The absurdity of the book is one thing, but Mignola really does a great job with the dialogue here, which is just as ridiculous, with strangely memorable lines like "HAHA! Stupid humans! Free at last from my vegetable prison!" I don't know why this line has stuck with me for a decade.

The other stand-out within this book is THE MAGICIAN AND THE SNAKE which won the 2003 Eisner for best Short Story. It's a fun story that originally, Mignola's daughter told to him. The apple doesn't fall too far from the tree. In addition, there's some never released stories like a Mignola-revamp of Jack and the Beanstalk.

The only problem is that after you read all of this, you'll really have nothing left to look forward to... or will you? If you're like me and find yourself enthralled by AMAZING SCREW-ON HEAD, but want more, then there's tv pilot that aired, but sadly didn't get picked up that you can buy/rent/stream! It's a pretty true to original story and contains some awesome voice-acting from Paul Giamatti, David Hyde Pierce, and Patton Oswalt.

So when it really comes down to it why should you read THE AMAZING SCREW-ON HEAD AND OTHER CURIOUS OBJECTS? Well, it's incredibly fun, and a great look at the awesome work of Mike Mignola. It's also one of the few times that Mignola fires on all his comedic cylinders, with the Amazing Screw-On Head story. His art is beautiful throughout, and the collection is worth the $17.99 price tag for everything contained within.

Mat "Inferiorego" Elfring is a comedian, writer, and host of the podcast Mat & Lewis Vs The Internet.

Staff
#1 Posted by Billy Batson (58028 posts) - - Show Bio

Best Iron Man story written. Would read it again 10/10.

Shame it was just an one-shot.

BB

#2 Posted by TheAcidSkull (18032 posts) - - Show Bio

Best Iron Man story written. Would read it again 10/10.

Shame it was just an one-shot.

BB

was it that good?

#3 Posted by Billy Batson (58028 posts) - - Show Bio

@billy_batson said:

Best Iron Man story written. Would read it again 10/10.

Shame it was just an one-shot.

BB

was it that good?

It's worth the read...

BB

#4 Posted by Vortex13 (12250 posts) - - Show Bio

Best Iron Man story written. Would read it again 10/10.

Shame it was just an one-shot.

BB

Iron Man?

#5 Posted by MyNameWasDeleted (679 posts) - - Show Bio

I recall seeing the pilot episode on tv... are you certain it never saw airplay?

#6 Posted by Necrotic_Lycanthrope (2388 posts) - - Show Bio

Love Mignola's tidbits in Dr. Thackery Lambshead's Cabinet of Curiosities, but I'm hesitant to pick this thing up. Not because of the art or writing, but because X-Files: I Want to Believe scarred me for life with living severed heads.

That and Crank 2: High Voltage.

#7 Posted by MyNameWasDeleted (679 posts) - - Show Bio

Love Mignola's tidbits in Dr. Thackery Lambshead's Cabinet of Curiosities, but I'm hesitant to pick this thing up. Not because of the art or writing, but because X-Files: I Want to Believe scarred me for life with living severed heads.

That and Crank 2: High Voltage.

he's a robot head- not actually alive

#8 Edited by Necrotic_Lycanthrope (2388 posts) - - Show Bio

@mynamewasdeleted:

Well, I do have to admit it's amusing to see a robotic screw head bouncing around chasing after Lincoln. :P

Although Emperor Zombie looks like King Zombie from DeadWorld if he was shaved and maggots ate the last parts of his face off.

It's a good thing. :P

#9 Edited by inferiorego (24714 posts) - - Show Bio

I recall seeing the pilot episode on tv... are you certain it never saw airplay?

I guess it did. Thanks for letting me know

Staff
#10 Posted by CitizenJP (597 posts) - - Show Bio

Mike Mignola is one of my favorite illustrators.

#11 Edited by BoyWander (318 posts) - - Show Bio

Love Mike Mignola's work. Had no idea it existed, but now I have to find it.

#12 Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus (6885 posts) - - Show Bio

I've heard such great things about this compilation before. Now I KNOW I must try this sometime! To the library I go!

#13 Posted by DonFelipe (1096 posts) - - Show Bio

What an amazing title for a comic book!

Many thanks for this article. I love this weekly feature "why you should read".

#14 Posted by Mucklefluga (2563 posts) - - Show Bio

Will check it out

#15 Posted by Billy Batson (58028 posts) - - Show Bio

@vortex13 said:

@billy_batson said:

Best Iron Man story written. Would read it again 10/10.

Shame it was just an one-shot.

BB

Iron Man?

A joke...

BB

#16 Posted by yo_yo_fun (643 posts) - - Show Bio

Sounds interesting.

I will check it out.

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