Snelson: Comedy is Dying profiles the comeback story of a washed-up '90s comedian

Snelson: Comedy is Dying #1
(Image credit: Ahoy Comics)

Everyone loves an underdog story, but in the case of Snelson: Comedy is Dying #1 that's difficult when the character is a bit of a dog himself.

Snelson: Comedy is Dying is the satirical story of an edgy '90s comedian named Melvile Snelson whose off-color humor made him popular but also eventually alienated him from that same fanbase. Now 25 years later, Melville is attempting a comeback - but this comic book series will show that maybe he never changed at all.

Check out this preview of Snelson: Comedy is Dying #1 by writer Paul Constant, artist Fred Harper, colorist Lee Loughridge, and letterer Rob Steen.

"Melville Snelson was killing it. He was the talk of the stand-up circuit. He had a TV sitcom in development! He even had a date with Janeane Garofalo (although, to be fair, she denies it). But that was the 1990's — and that was a long time ago," reads Ahoy Comics' description of Snelson: Comedy is Dying #1.

 "This 5-issue series chronicles the misadventures of a washed-up comedian whose career peaked when Dawson's Creek was still on the air. Bitter because he missed his big break in the '90s, Snelson is struggling with the idea that he's a victim of cancel culture or, even worse, forgotten altogether."

Make no mistake, Snelson: Comedy is Dying isn't glorifying its titular character here - instead it acts as a supremely adult satire of the comedy scene, social norms, and even white male entitlement.

"Snelson: Comedy is Dying is the rare satirical comic that keeps getting more and more relevant as it gets closer to publication," Constant said when the book was announced. "If you've ever stared in slack-jawed fascination at the shameless grifters who love to whine about being silenced by cancel culture in books, on podcasts, and on YouTube, you'll absolutely love to hate Melville Snelson."

Harper has drawn the main cover to Snelson: Comedy is Dying #1, with alt-comics icon Peter Bagge drawing a variant cover. Take a look:

Snelson: Comedy is Dying #1 (of 5) goes on sale on August 5.

Snelson: Comedy is Dying will be available in participating comic stores and on most digital comics platforms. Check out our list of the best digital comics readers for Android and iOS devices. 

Chris Arrant

Chris Arrant covered comic book news for Newsarama from 2003 to 2022 (and as editor/senior editor from 2015 to 2022) and has also written for USA Today, Life, Entertainment Weekly, Publisher's Weekly, Marvel Entertainment, TOKYOPOP, AdHouse Books, Cartoon Brew, Bleeding Cool, Comic Shop News, and CBR. He is the author of the book Modern: Masters Cliff Chiang, co-authored Art of Spider-Man Classic, and contributed to Dark Horse/Bedside Press' anthology Pros and (Comic) Cons. He has acted as a judge for the Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, the Harvey Awards, and the Stan Lee Awards. Chris is a member of the American Library Association's Graphic Novel & Comics Round Table. (He/him)