“SLUGGO IS LIT!” With these words Olivia Jaimes's Nancy: A Comic Collection (Andrews McMeel, $14.99) fully transcended its origins as a 1930s comic strip and became something even more horrifying: a meme. Ernie Bushmiller's original run is beloved by comics fans for its creative gags and sense of economy. The mysterious Jaimes (a pseudonym) doesn't so much reinvent the wheel with her take on the character as wrest the original from the clutches of Bushmiller's mediocre successors. Once more, Nancy is headstrong, greedy, and self-obsessed—and she’s all the better for it. But now she and her friend Sluggo have smartphones, Fritzi is devoted to the Marie Kondo ethos, and a new but already long-suffering teacher at school has started a robotics club. There are jokes about the difference between liking somebody's post and commenting and sharing on somebody's post on social media; there are jokes about badly drawn strips being the result of Snapchat filters; there are jokes that don't so much smash open the fourth wall as remap it. The result is a strong collection of distinctly modern comic strips that remain wholly in keeping with the anarchic original. The volume also includes essays and interviews for die-hard Nancyphiles.
Nancy by Olivia Jaimes