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Zap Comix #9 1st
excellent writing
exceptional art
historical bonus 4
total score 9
Zap Comix #9
Zap Comix 9 Back CoverBack Cover
(click for larger image)

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Promethean EnterprisesPromethean Enterprises
1st Printing / September 1978 / 52 pages / The Print Mint
Zap Comix #9 came out over three years after the previous issue, just in time to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the series debut in 1968. It was the last issue of Zap that the Print Mint would publish and the series would take a four-year break after this issue before finally putting out the tenth issue (so the Zap Collective produced only one book in a seven-year span; this will become the pattern for the remainder of the series).

S. Clay Wilson contributes a post-apocalyptic front cover for Zap #9, depicting humans blasting away at invading aliens in a devastated New York City. Robert Crumb kicks things off with a solid 10-page story "Lap o' Luxury," which portrays a spoiled, short-tempered little boy in a typical suburban home. The boy is certainly reminiscent of Crumb himself, with his fetish for women's thick legs. Though "Lap o' Luxury" doesn't depict all that much in its leisurely 10 pages, the subtle points it does make are pertinent even today.

Wilson returns with the six-page "Travelin' Assasin," an entertaining yarn from a futuristic underworld with some barely justified bloodshed and a couple nice twists at the end. One of Wilson's more intriguing tales, I believe. Robert Williams follows with one his many bizarre yet entertaining stories, "Muzzy the Dunce in Never Let em' Sqwark!" Muzzy apparently suffers from Down's Syndrome, dwarfism and severe hallucinations, the latter of which leads him into one outlandish situation after another. It's a wild, funny adventure with no shortage of Wiliiams' distinctively rich and dense panel compositions.

After a one-page "Advanced Motoring Tips" from Gilbert Shelton (one of his better ones), Williams quickly returns for "The Mystery Map of Assinine Atoll," a full center-spread illustrated map that features "The Lost Temple of Mystic Symbols," "The Place Where Balloons Won't Bust," "Autogyro Drome of the Fornicatresses," and "Region of the Unapproachable Skunk-Cult," among many, many others. Very whimsical stuff, and yet another page from Zap that would make an awesome poster!

After a two-pager from Spain Rodriguez that ends with great satisfaction, Williams returns yet again for an amusing two-page Coochy Cooty story, "Everyone's Doin' It!" Rodriguez contributes a ten-page chapter of "Sangrella," in which the protagonist takes on another dangerous mission from the Dictatress. To be honest, I found it to be one of Rodriguez's weaker stories and it helped chip a point off the Total Score for Zap #9. Williams, Wilson and (especially) Moscoso deliver some solid one-pagers and short strips to close out the book, but the second half of this issue is certainly the weaker half, primarily due to the legendary Rodriguez. Overall, though, Zap Comix #9 is a terrific read.

There are five known printing variations of this comic book, the first by the Print Mint and the rest by Last Gasp. This is the last issue of the series included in Kennedy's Price Guide, but Kennedy does not identify any individual or cumulative print quantities for the printings. The following describes the identified print variations:
1st printing - $1.00 cover price
2nd printing - $1.50 cover price
3rd printing - $2.50 cover price
4th printing - $2.95 cover price
5th printing - $4.95 cover price


S. Clay Wilson - 1, 2, 13-18, 32, 43, 50, 51 (collaboration)
Robert Crumb - 3-12, 51 (collaboration)
Robert Williams - 19-24, 26-27, 30-31, 44-45
Gilbert Shelton - 25
Spain Rodriguez - 28-29, 33-42, 51-52 (collaboration)
Victor Moscoso - 46-49, 51-52 (collaboration)
Zap Comix 9 2nd
2nd Printing

$1.50 cover.
_ Zap Comix 9 4th
4th Printing
$2.95 cover.