Review by Ian Keogh
In a corrupt and sleazy cesspit of a town, the Mean Girls Club stands as a beacon of resistance, organising disobedience from their secret hideout deep in the swamp. The supposed pillars of society pervert the innocent, but the Mean Girls fight for the rights of women like a pink 1950s Pussy Riot, each of them rescued from betrayal at the hands of men.
If you’re in the mood there’s a lot of fun to be had with Mean Girls Club as a knowing, yet unpretentious slab of fast-paced pulp, reversing the traditions of gang films of the 1950s with what the back cover blurb brilliantly refers to as a swift stiletto stab to the crotch of patriarchy. It’s as if Russ Meyer and John Waters collaborated on the script and hauled in Robert Williams as designer to ensure it oozes with period style and the depravity of hindsight.
There’s never the slightest doubt that Ryan Heshka’s plot’s going to follow a well-trodden path to Blackie, Pinky, Sweets, Wanda, Wendy and McQualude ensuring the corrupt mayor and cronies get their just desserts, which duly occurs in imaginative fashion. Heshka draws everything in a frenetic pastiche of heavily inked 1950s American crime comics, while the vivid pink added to otherwise black and white pages brings to mind British girls’ comics from the same era, which similarly restricted the colour. Sadly standard scanners are ill-equipped to convert just how vivid the pink is, with even the reproductions on Nobrow’s own site coming nowhere near the actual book. It provides a visual kitsch to match the hilariously bad taste script. Anyone wanting depth needs to look elsewhere as this is practically a style bible to straight to DVD culture, where action and design is all, a frenetic ninety page adrenaline rush from the opening police raid on the Mean Girls’ clubhouse, to the epilogue pin-up and glimpse into the immediate future. Tasty.