Filing Cabinet of the Damned

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Am I Not Lovely, O Man?

Cross-dressing: a source of great humor to the British, occasionally amusing to everyone else.

Groo, of course, makes it work.

Groo the Wanderer #6, "The Eye of Kabula," gives the Wanderer a chance to flaunt his feminine wiles. Such as they are.

Below is the double-splash, typical of a Sergio Aragones comic. (I lost a bit on the right-hand side due to a smallish scanner bed. Sorry, folks.) Good lord, that man can cram a lot of things into a space. For those unacquainted with Aragones's work, please note that this double-page splash is a little less crammed than his usual big crowd scenes. Still, there's a lot to see here.

(As per usual, click on any image in the post to expand it.)

The man speaking to Groo sells him a fruit (overcharging him horribly) and relates the town's tale of woe. The statue in the center of town, a likeness of the god Kabula, has an eye made from a giant ruby. Without the ruby, a great curse will visit the town. However, the ruby is gone, recently taken.

Groo, happy to have a quest, decides to retrieve the ruby and help the town. Why? Because he loves quests. Besides, grateful villagers might pay him in coins and cheese dip.

Groo undertakes his quest, ruminating how this particular task will take more than his usual approach of "stab everything and hope it all works out in the end."

A chain of events leads to a discovery: the ruby was purchased by the ruby-obsessed King Ojete. To get the gem back, Groo would have to infiltrate Ojete's castle.

With the assistance of a pair of helpful (if mocking) citizens, Groo has a plan. A servant of the King buys new women for the harem on a regular basis. If Groo dressed as a woman, then perhaps...

Work it, girl. Work it.

The king's servant appears and, as per usual for Groo, madness ensues.

Yeah, I like women with a little fire in 'em too.

Though preferably without a giant gourd-shaped nose and bad makeup. To each their own.

As in so many men's fantasies, Groo enters the harem, and indeed, finds paradise.

Before he can enjoy the cheese dip, he is called to meet the king, who is immediately inflamed with white-hot pagan lust. Groo employs his feminine charms to stall the king and get a look at the ruby collection. Smitten with his new concubine, the king boasts of his latest prize: the Eye of Kabula.

Groo being Groo, he seizes the gem, decks the king, and runs for it.

He escapes the castle, changes back into his usual garb, and returns the gem to the village, pursued by King Ojete's army. The village sends out its own forces to protect their hero. Groo forks over the gem and relates his tales of high adventure.

The comic ends with Groo fleeing the town, pursued by two armies. As is often the case for him.

This issue has a lot going for it: a quest, a fabled gem, cross-dressing, a harem, battling armies, cheese dip... ah, Groo.

I love this stuff.



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