|Portrait of the artist as a big baby|
Justin Carter is a relevant alt lit bro. He lives in Texas, attends school, and is the founder of Banango, the literary blog. I find it funny he calls it a ‘literary blog’, you know, just to make sure it stays literary. Thus, he is able to keep it under control and make sure the blog doesn’t do something rash, like cover Pokémon or the demographic changes of Norway. Why does Norway even exist? Don’t they have enough money to move to a warmer, less depressing place?
‘A Million Bears’ is a tribute to Spencer Madsen, a rising star in the alt lit community. It goes over what happens when a millions bears aren’t funny. Spencer’s book is hilarious, filled with plenty of amazing one-liners. Justin’s piece explores the dark humor of a million bears. In the story the city of Chicago is filled with a million hungry bears.
No one states how the bears got to Chicago. The story goes along in a faux-panic style. Steve (who we assume is Steve Roggenbuck according to the picture on the right-hand side) is a successful alt lit writer with a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ opportunity. After years of living in dire-ass poverty Steve can finally become a successful writer. All he needs to do is catch the red line. Bears make that impossible however.
The train is running late. People are dying. Yet Jackson Nieuwland continues to like things to the left. Doesn’t Jackson know those people might never post a thing again, due to being mauled to death by a million bears? Ruby tells Steve about the bears. Steve gets on a bus and watches as people are killed by the bears. It is a veritable ‘Bear Parade’ as shown on the left-hand side. I wonder what ever happened to the Bear Parade. Perhaps the owner of ‘Bear Parade’ got mauled to death by one of those bears.
We see the Banango Street Gmail account opened. Maybe that’s the only road not occupied by the bears. Or perhaps Banango, the literary blog, is trying to save all the alt lit superstars that live in Chicago. Rudy cries for Steve, knowing he is fucked. I cry every time I know I am fucked. I cry a lot.
Internet Poetry can’t help Steve now. A caption underneath states ‘I am a bear’ as it gleefully runs through the Chicago meadows to eat people. Steve stays overnight in some makeshift secure building. Crispin Best is in the background. Unfortunately bears devour Crispin Best as he flarfs his last flarf. I think it went @Help @I am @being @devoured by bears. That hurts. RIP Crispin. Sorry bears ate Crispin Best, ass first. At least the bears get defeated, but only after much carnage and the destruction of most of Chicago. Getting mauled to death by a bear seems bleak.
The last page has a shout out for Beach Sloth and Hazel Cummings, a once active Facebook/Tumblr user. Hazel Cummings got devoured by a bear too. Either that or Hazel Cummings was a troll account that got bored of trolling.
I like Justin’s take on Spencer’s book. It is considerably darker. Yet there is a happy ending on the final page of the chapbook. Or I could just be totally messing with you. Check it out either way. It’ll change your life.