The founder of underground-comics mainstay Hate (published in an annual edition for Seattle's Fantagraphics) and the creator of the popular, twisted family characters the Bradleys, PETER BAGGE isn't a Seattle native—he grew up in New York state. But he's long been a vociferous champion of this city, particularly his beloved Ballard, the subject of a classic strip about the upscaling of Ballard's "Tavern Row" for the late, lamented Web site Suck.com. (It's archived at www.suck.com/daily/2001/02/16/.) Bagge has even wended his way into the mainstream: He's recently worked on two comics for DC (home of Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman)—writing Yeah!, which is drawn by fellow Fantagraphics alum Gilbert Hernandez (of Love and Rockets fame), and drawing Sweatshop, which mocks the world of mainstream superhero comics (you know, the kind that butters DC's bread). His highest-profile gig, though, is undoubtedly Bat Boy, the comic he draws in every issue of the Weekly World News. Given the cartoonist's riotous, exaggerated line work—it is very unusual for a Bagge-drawn building to have a single straight line or for characters to open their mouths only a little bit—the fit between himself and the ultimate supermarket tabloid's ultimate recurring character couldn't be more perfect. www.peterbagge.com
Peter Bagge's Picks
BEST PUBLIC BOONDOGGLE: "The monorail expansion, simply because the Ballard line will be conveniently located very close to my house, thus whisking me away to Mariner games lickety-split!"
BEST DIVE BAR: The Viking in Ballard. "Good, cheap, friendly place to watch Mariner games."
BEST COMICS SHOP FOR WEIRDO "ALTERNATIVE" COMICS FANS: Confounded Books. "The only downside is that it's in the very inaccessible-from-Ballard neighborhood of Capitol Hill. I propose a monorail should be built from my house to Confounded Books!"
BEST PLACE TO BUY USED CDS: Amazon.com: "They're headquartered in Seattle, so it counts!"
BEST ART GALLERY: Roq La Rue in Belltown. "They exhibit lots of tasteless, cartoony 'art' that feature hot rods and protruding eyeballs and whatnot. What's not to like?"
BEST NEIGHBORHOOD: "Ballard! (Yes, I'm prejudiced.)"
SEATTLE WEEKLY'S BEST OF SEATTLE 2004 INDEX