Prison Pit: Book Three

Prison Pit: Book Three

by Johnny Ryan

Johnny Ryan’s mind-boggling prison planet/wrestling/monster/horror mash-up is back!Prison Pit blends Angry Youth Comix creator Johnny Ryan’s fascination with WWE wrestling, grindhouse cinema, first person action video games, Gary Panter’s Jimbo comics, and Kentaro Miura’s “Berserk” manga into a brutal and often hilarious showcase


Johnny Ryan’s mind-boggling prison planet/wrestling/monster/horror mash-up is back!Prison Pit blends Angry Youth Comix creator Johnny Ryan’s fascination with WWE wrestling, grindhouse cinema, first person action video games, Gary Panter’s Jimbo comics, and Kentaro Miura’s “Berserk” manga into a brutal and often hilarious showcase of violence like no other comic book ever created. Even the lead character’s name, which is only one letter away from “Cannibal Duckface” (hint: “Cannibal” is correct) is unprintable.Prison Pit is so deranged and twisted that even the author’s plot description, while admirably reflecting the spirit of the book, has to be edited into a sea of asterisks in order to be bearable to normal human beings: “A mysterious new a**hole has descended into the Prison Pit. He’s looking for Cannibal F***face and he wants revenge. Revenge for what? Probably for some f***ed up evil s***. But before he can get his hands on the CanMan he’s got to battle his way through some pretty vicious motherf***ers. S***’s about to get real.”
Well, yes, exactly.

Editorial Reviews

Nick Gazin - Vice
“This thing is great and an essential read. It is important. Buy buy buy.”
Chad Derdowski - Mania
“The Good: Prison Pit reminded me a lot of Gwar, professional wrestling and the comic strips my friends and I used to draw in junior high. ... It was gross as hell and filled with blood and gore and just straight-up repulsive juvenile humor. It was a lot of fun. The Bad: It’s probably too awesome for a lot of people to handle. ... The Bottom Line: Dude, it’s great. Just shut up and buy it. ...I’m giving Prison Pit an A and as soon as I’m done writing this review, I’m going to sit down and re-read it.”
Chris Mautner - Robot 6
While Carl Perkins recorded many fine records and enjoyed a long and successful career after he left Sun Records, there's no arguing that the sides cut during his tenure with Sam Phillips are his best-known and most influential work; it's all but impossible to imagine the rockabilly revolution of the 1950s happening without hits like "Blue Suede Shoes" and "Boppin' the Blues," and literally thousands of rock guitarists from George Harrison to Lou Reed first had their heads turned around by his trademark licks. Original Sun Greatest Hits compiles 16 of Perkins' best and best-known recordings for Sun, and you could hardly ask for a better introduction to the man's music. From the hillbilly blues of "Sure to Fall" to uptempo rockers like "Matchbox," "All Mama's Children," and "Honey Don't" and lesser-known gems like the down-home delinquency of "Dixie Fried" and the well-oiled sartorial splendor of "Put Your Cat Clothes On," every song is a winner, and Perkins' ringing guitar lines, warm and playful vocals, and loose but emphatic interplay with his band are a joy to hear. If you're only going to own one Carl Perkins album, Original Sun Greatest Hits is certainly the one to get.
David Uzumeri - Robot 6
“Johnny Ryan’s Prison Pit is something I keep coming back to — and not just because it’s the only comic book I’ve ever seen that can actively liven up a party. It’s a hilarious, visceral and quick read… for really dumb fun, this is pretty much unbeatable.”
“For splatter-movie fans and anyone trying to grok the splatter-movie ethos, not to be missed.”
“Prison Pit 2 was TACO’s book of the year in 2010, and Prison Pit 3 is the early frontrunner for 2011. Featuring the series’ characteristic extreme ultra-violence, gore, scatophilia, and brutality, it’s another hit from artist Johnny Ryan.”
Edward Kaye - Newsarama
“Prison Pit: Book 3 is a comic unlike anything you’ve ever read before — the plot is outlandish, and the artwork is violent, bloody, gory, and completely unapologetic in its brutality.... Rating: 10 out of 10.”
Tucker Stone - comiXology
“Prison Pit blends Angry Youth Comix creator Johnny Ryan's fascination with WWE wrestling, grindhouse cinema, Gary Panter's Jimbo comics, and Kentaro Miura's Berserk Manga into a brutal and often hilarious showcase of violence like no other comic book ever created.”
“Next to Jughead, Johnny’s about the best thing going on in comic books these days, so don’t be a chump and wait until they make some perverted documentary about him and he’s some hipster darling! ACT NOW!”
Jared Gniewek - Graphic NYC
“Johnny Ryan draws the bad pictures. Unapologetically and lots of ‘em and I hope to god he never stops. …Prison Pit… kinda’ sorta’ kicks serious ass. ... The story definitely puts the GORE in phantasmagorical… you can smell it from miles away.”
Sean Witzke - supervillain
“Book of ‘09... If the point of comics is f—-ed up s—- happening, this is the best f—-ing comic ever made.”
Jeffrey Brown
“Perhaps the best and also craziest comic Johnny Ryan has made yet. I hope he does 1,000 pages of this.”
Brian Smith - Awesome Engine
“Next to Scott Pilgrim this felt to me like the western comic that’s got closest to properly understanding the energy of manga, rather than simply aping the surface elements. ... It’s the best art I’ve seen Ryan do in his career.”
Joe McCulloch - Jog - The Blog
“Prison Pit is the best comic Johnny Ryan has ever drawn. It’s rich, clever, energetic, funny — I don’t think I’ve purely in-my-guts enjoyed another comic so much.... You’ve gotta see it to believe it.”
Patrick Markfort - Articulate Nerd
“Refreshingly devoid of any literary or artistic pretensions, this first of what I hope will be many, many volumes nevertheless comes across as somehow one of the smartest and well crafted books of the year. No, really.”
Geoffrey Lapid - Death-Ray Ozone
“If you're onboard for the third installment of something so purposefully vile as Prison Pit, you know what you're getting into. You're not going to be shocked by violence and gore, but you're still going to have a great time...”
Lincoln Michel - The Faster Times
“[An] over-the-top, ultra-violent, gross-out juvenile, yet fun and hilarious book... The dialogue that does exist retains his comic sense of disjunction and fights are as demented as you’d expect. This is not a jokey book, but his humor is retained in subtle ways—if you can envision subtle Johnny Ryan humor. ... This is just a balls-out, funny, sicko, good time. My only complaint with Prison Pit is how quickly the story ends, but hopefully the subtitle (Book One) is a promise and not a joke.”
Mark Hale - The Bureau Chiefs
“Amazingly, I was sucked in by the whole enterprise, laughing and groaning and shaking my head. ... These are ugly characters in a gross situation, and Prison Pit treats them with all the indulgence and nastiness needed.”
Noah Berlatsky - The Comics Journal
“[T]he single-minded commitment to vileness is so perversely pure that it goes right past lowest-common-denominator entertainment and on into snooty, fancy-pants art. ... Ryan’s world is essentially Waiting for Godot, from the bleak landscape to the slapstick violence.”
Jesse Pearson - The Comics Journal
“There’s humor (both grim and sophomoric), ridiculously over-the-top violence, humanoids metamorphosing into monsteroids, and a serial storytelling instinct that has been honed through almost two decades of practice.”
Sean T. Collins - The Comics Journal
“I literally dropped everything to read this thing.... Volume three in Ryan’s madcap ultra-violent combat comic is firmly in the vein, so to speak, of the first installment: No-holds-barred body-horror battle between monster-men who look like refugees from an alternate-universe He-Man whose house artist was Pushead instead of Earl Norem.”
Patrick Tobin - Multiversity Comics
“...[Johnny Ryan] is easily one of the four or five most vital and important cartoonists working today…. Imagine Mortal Kombat with any semblance or shadow of good taste thoroughly and messily extracted, paced like pro wrestling and dialogued by Sam Fuller and/or the Ramones.”
David Harper - Multiversity Comics
“If it doesn't make you sick, you shouldn't be allowed to walk among the public in the first place. If it doesn't make you giddy for the next one, you don't deserve comics.”
Tom Spurgeon - The Comics Reporter
“It's the kind of work that makes you think that its creator is thinking of the long-term as opposed to focusing solely on the short. Prison Pit had some of that particular swagger from the very beginning; this book seems even more settled and confident.... As was the case with the first two books, Johnny Ryan makes his case for mastery at a second, very specific genre, connected to the first through the extremes of expression involved.”
Chad Nevett - Comic Book Resources
“Ryan’s line work is at its best in some parts of this volume, showing the ability to continually come up with inventive weird visuals.... The only bad thing about Prison Pit Book 3 coming out is that it will be another year until Book 4 is released...”
Brian Heater - The Daily Cross-Hatch
“While Prison Pit does, in fact, have a definable story throughout, it’s one that feels as though it were crafted in the margins of a spiral-bound notebooks stowed safely away in some backpack littered with the Sharpie penned names of metal bands. And though Ryan didn’t go so far as to in append a listening soundtrack to the back of this volume, one can almost certainly be assured that it contains its share of Cannibal Corpse and Slayer tracks.”
Richard Cowdry - The Forbidden Planet International Blog Log
“Johnny Ryan takes ideas and styles that have been knocking around the art comics scene for the last few years, and injects them with gallons of fun, attitude and humour. My favourite new comic of the year!”
Sammy Harkham (Crickets
“Prison Pit 3 rules. Like Yokoyama's manga, it's all surface cause & effect & somehow full of weird associations & meanings. It resonates deep.”

Product Details

Fantagraphics Books
Publication date:
Prison Pit Series
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
6.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.60(d)

Meet the Author

Johnny Ryanwas born in Boston, MA, and lives in Los Angeles, CA, with his wife and his daughter. Currently, he is co-creating the forthcoming Pig Goat Banana Cricket series for Nickelodeon. In addition to his creator-owned comics series, he's contributed toVice, Mad, and LA Weekly, among other clients.

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