Reality check, Asheville: In praise of Tooth & Jaw
Sculpture, by Jonny Cantrell
Asheville is, in many ways, a great place, and I'm generally quite happy to live and work here. But the bullshit level in this town gets extremely high sometimes, especially among certain segments of the community (which segments? the ones that talk about "the community" every other sentence).
This is the city that will put on elaborate puppet shows about the silencing of Russian journalists while doing jack to help independent journalism here, that stands strong for the working class as long as it's somewhere else, that all too often writes off the abuse of women as a personal or mental issue and whose skin is so thin that bad art often gets a free pass.
Into this steps Jonny Cantrell, maker of Tooth & Jaw, which runs in the Mountain Xpress (the paper I work for). While much derivative crap around here claims the title of "provocative," this is a comic that actually hits hard.
I don't always agree with his barbs, but when Cantrell's dead-on, like the two installments featured here, he does exactly the kind of uncomfortable truth-telling Asheville so desperately needs.