FAMILYFANS Books & Comics

ZITS SKETCHBOOK 12: Rude, Crude, and Tattooed

by Jerry Scott and Jim Borgman

(Andrews McMeel Publishers)


Reader Appeal: All ages, but especially teens, and parents of teens

Genre: Humor / Comic Strip Collections


Zits is a hilarious and scarily accurate account of teenage life!

For the initiated, Zits is a syndicated daily comic strip about Jeremy Duncan and those around him. Jeremy is 15 years old, attends high school, is in a band, and has a steady girlfriend. His parents, Walt and Connie are always trying to keep tabs on him and make sure he doesn’t get into too much trouble. Jeremy’s best friend is Hector. Jeremy and Hector are always working on their old hunk-o-junk Volkswagen van, anticipating the day they will graduate and take a cross-country trip. Another good friend of Jeremy’s is Pierce. Pierce is a pretty eccentric guy. He has piercings and tattoos all over his body, but is a pretty good kid at heart, even if he does seem to get in a lot of trouble. Jeremy’s girlfriend, Sara is way too obsessed with fashion, and is never quite sure if she should be dating Jeremy. Put all of these characters together and you get one fast paced and funny comic strip about a boy and his struggle to grow up. Put a bunch of those daily strips into a book, and you've got Zits Sketchbook 12: Rude, Crude, and Tattooed.

This strip is one of my favorites because of its shocking accuracy of the teenage lifestyle. My parents and I are constantly pointing out specific strips and thinking of when that happened in our house. The fact that the writers can take something funny and make others laugh at themselves and the characters is something of pure talent. In this sketchbook, I really enjoyed that Pierce played a bigger role in this book compared to the last ones, because he can add a whole other dimension to Jeremy’s life. Also, one of my favorite parts in this colection was the series of strips when RichandAmy broke up. RichandAmy is a couple that have been together so long that they are forever locked in the hugging position. Zits really is a treat to read.

One of the things that was a disappointment about this book was the fact that Jeremy’s brother, Chad, who is in college, didn’t show up at all. Chad is the kind of guy that Jeremy wants to be, but can’t seem to find out how to do it. One last thing is that there are a few strips that are pretty much just repeats of old ones, but with a little bit different twist. Those are kind of disappointing because you feel like there is nothing new or original there. However, those are just nitpicky complaints, and overall Zits is one of the few, no-fail winners in comic strips.

Zits Sketchbook 12: Rude, Crude, and Tattooed has my full recommendation as one of the best comic strips out there, and one that is always entertaining.


AFTER THE STORY (optional)

If members of your family like this book, then you may want to try…

-Any other Zits book, Jerry Scott and Jim Borgman, Humor. More crazy and hilarious antics of the Duncan family and Jeremy’s friends.


Note: All book or comics-related graphics in this column are standard publicity/promotional shots and are owned by their respective publisher.