President Donald J. Trump is no stranger to media attention. He’s a frequent punchline during late night television. He’s inspired a number of caricatures and impersonations. Heck, he’s even a music video star. Needless to say, the mere mention of his name elicits a fervent response, good and bad. When speaking of him or content influenced by him — as we will in a moment with THE INCAPABLE TRUMP #1 — it can be difficult to separate emotion and bias and put forth something objective.

The reason is simple: no matter your politics, the Trump presidency marked a watershed moment in our history. On one side, we’re turning the page. We’re going to make America great again. But for the other half, there’s a palpable and ready sense of uncertainty and fear. And it stems from a calculated division. The adage of united we stand, divided we fall has never rung truer.

Incapable, Not Incredible

I’ll start off by saying I enjoyed THE INCAPABLE TRUMP #1. It captures some of the idiosyncrasies of the president, such as his penchant for superlatives and hyperbole. The characterization is familiar. We see an amusing depiction of the “toddler-in-chief,” in which the president is trying to spell his name with building blocks. There’s even a reference to the crowd size of the 2017 inauguration – which was undoubtedly historical in a few different ways. Nonetheless, the issue plays out as you’d expect an issue of a satirical comic about the sitting president would.

The Incapable Trump - NYCC
Image courtesy of Zindan

What is clever though is the indubitable parallel to one of Marvel’s larger-than-life characters: the Hulk. Homage is found in the title of the comic, on its cover, and in the transformed state of the president. If one were to ascribe a singular adjective to the Hulk, incredible would be it. Likewise, in many voters’ minds, incapable would aptly sum up Trump’s capabilities as president. Bruce Banner’s iconic catchphrase makes an appearance as well.

However, Trump’s Achilles heel is an embarrassment, rather than anger. The sequence in which Trump undergoes the change into the incapable Trump is riotous, underscored by that real-world relation. When Trump transforms, his speech pattern entertainingly matches the Hulk. It’s an on-the-nose comparison of two over-the-top characters. Yet, when you see it unfold on the page, you can’t help but admire the cognizance of the similarities.

No Art in the Deal: Trump Versus The Arts

Totally Awesome Art

What I adore about the issue though is the art. It’s nostalgic and reminds me of the days when I would be sifting through the Sunday newspaper, looking for the comic strip section. The art is reminiscent of that style. It shares that classically drawn look. It’s incredibly detailed. The colorist does an excellent job of contrasting various hues to make the characters and backgrounds stand out.

There are some inconsistencies in the pencils. For example, some panels are more defined than others, such as in the depictions of the president’s face; but that’s being a tad nitpicky, and it doesn’t detract from the artwork as a whole. Lastly, and it’s a small detail, but the gradient effect is a nice touch that adds greater definition to the scenery.

The Incapable Trump
Image courtesy of Zindan

We The People

The ending is bittersweet, in more ways than one. To placate the Trump, Omar Mirza and Khurram Mehtabdin give us their version of the Hulk lullaby, which entails citing the preamble of the Constitution. This recitation occurs while the Trump is destroying one of our institutions: the Rotunda of the National Archives Building, with eyes set on the Constitution.

For the political junkies out there, we have some notable cameos, from a CNN anchor to presently serving democratic senators — see if you can name them all. It’s a Spirit Bomb kind of moment, as more and more citizens lend their voice to placate the Donald. It’s a befitting reminder of the principles in which this country was founded on.

The comic doesn’t end there, however. The final pages of THE INCAPABLE TRUMP #1 belong to the people. In these pages, you can find real accounts of how the Trump presidency has influenced a handful of Americans. There’s one touching story in particular – which inspired the opening of this review – that I would encourage every able body to read. It’s from Yousaf and Saira Chowdhry. It’s an example of exemplary character and sagacious vision.

Closing Thoughts on THE INCAPABLE TRUMP #1

It’s apparent who this comic will appeal to and not appeal to. To paraphrase one Google Play reviewer, this comic may be construed as “leftist propaganda.” I can understand that point of view if you judge this book by its cover. However, I would encourage you and any reader to look deeper. Listen to what the writers are saying and what the artist is conveying on these pages. Feel their concern, see where they are coming from, and empathize. And I’d encourage the same treatment toward the other end.

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THE INCAPABLE TRUMP #1 is a reasonably humorous excursion through the passages of Washington DC. You’ll see a familiar characterization of the president; however, thanks to its deeper message and classically drawn style – it’s easy to overlook that fact.

A perseverance underlines the comic in the belief of this country’s principles and values. It serves as a response to the challenges of those ideologies. Thus, if it can alleviate some of that tension, bring smiles to the concerned faces of innumerable readers — it has accomplished its mission.

THE INCAPABLE TRUMP #1 is available now on iTunes and Google Play.

THE INCAPABLE TRUMP #1 by Omar Mirza and Khurram Mehtabdin
THE INCAPABLE TRUMP #1 is a comedic excursion through the passages of Washington DC. You’ll see a familiar characterization of the president; however, thanks to its deeper message and classically drawn style – it’s easy to overlook that fact.
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