Minty Lewis was born in Falls Church, Virginia on December 11, 1978, but has since moved to California. She is currently living the dream, voicing the character of Eileen the mole on Cartoon Network’s Regular Show (for which she also wrote and storyboarded four episodes in 2010). Sometimes she makes comics and writes scripts. She has two older sisters, one older brother, one dog, three cats, one husband, and one daughter. She’s doing the best she can with the tools she has.
IN THE EMPORIUM
Minty’s comics can be found in the Secret Acres Emporium here.
Life’s misbegotten outsiders - people like you, me and the moron in the in the next cubicle – are thinly disguised as fruit, household pets, and salt and sugar shakers in Minty Lewis‘ wryly nihilistic cartoons. Frankly, I don’t believe anyone has pegged the undermining tendencies of Yorkshire Terriers as deftly as Lewis does in “Yorky Roomies,” “Yorky Schoolmates,” and “Yorky Matrimony.” (Warning: never play drunken Scrabble with a drunken Yorky at your bridal shower). My favorite frame in PS Comics is an aerial view of an apple waiting for his luggage during a brief Orlando vacation that ends in hilarious existential agony.
- The Village Voice
Why I liked it: Not long ago I read one of Minty Lewis‘ “Fruit Pals” comics, and I was instantly smitten. The hilarious stories are sort of like Office Space if all of the characters were fruit — you have Apple sitting in his cubicle, Banana making crude jokes, Strawberry hoping for a raise, etc. They’re pretty much my favorite things ever. PS Comics compiles several “Fruit Pals” strips, along with stories about talking dogs and more. (One of my favorites is a love story between a salt shaker and a sugar shaker. Says salt: “Sometimes I feel like people just think of me as this one thing, when I‘m so much more complex than that.”)
Why you’ll like it: Because you‘re a fan of offbeat humor and can’t wait until Gentleman Broncos comes out. Because your favorite part of Pee-wee‘s Playhouse was when he opened the refrigerator. Because you really do imagine your dog talking all the time.
- USA Today
With the recent publication of a Secret Acres anthology of the same name, Lewis seems primed for recognition on a wider scale for stories that balance the unreality of anthropomorphic animals and produce with simple tales of daily human existence.
- The Daily Crosshatch
Midway through Minty Lewis’ newly realeased PS Comics, I got to thinking about Charles M. Schulz, the creator of Peanuts. Had Schulz introduced stories of Snoopy and Charlie Brown in the current era, his most productive years would have coincided with declining newspaper circulation and shrunken comic strips. Only graphic novel insiders would know the entire comic world he created. It may sound presumptuous to link Minty Lewis and Charles Schulz, but like the Peanuts creator she has invented and entirely new world whose characters reveal deep insights about life. In Lewis‘ case, her main characters are fruit, though dogs and salt and pepper shakers also have their say. Lewis’ apple, pear, mango, lemon and others work in offices and have their own distinct personalities; their dialogure is both more realistic and more insightful than anything found in today‘s situation comedies or the routinely sexist romantic comedies that fill our move screens.
Minty Lewis is obviously not only a great observer of human behavior and our various idiosyncrasies, but she’s evenly matched it with an ability to illustrate those observations. And it‘s interesting to me when I find that reading a comic that does that so well that it doesn’t always mean that the actual drawings are the world‘s best renderings. But it almost doesn’t seem necesssary, because the drawings contain the ability to illustrate doubt on a face that didn‘t have it in the panel before, or to show us a character’s intentions and motivations betraying the lie of the dialogue written in the very same frame. It reads like a gift. And yet, even though I don‘t know a thing about cartooning, it isn’t a gift, is it? After all, calling it a gift is just another way of saying that it isn‘t earned, that it isn’t hard–but if it‘s not hard to do, then everybody would do it. They aren’t. Minty is.
- The Factual Opinion
After 20+ years of reading comics from all types of genres, publishers and creators, it was her PS Comics #3, which I picked up at the Alternative Press Expo in 2007, that left me gobsmacked with pure, unadulterated joy and mirth. It was a reminder of everything cool and special that comics could be.
- Osmosis Online
Here we have more tales of fruit, yorkies, and various condiments in distress. The bulk of the comic is taken up by the love of two of the yorkies, Quincy and Cleopatra, and how this evolving relationship hurts Cleo’s current roommate, Lucy. It’s a tale of sniping and personal attacks that’s as old as time, unless of course you tell it from the perspective of dogs. Melanie also deals with the vagaries of high school life when everybody decides not to go to the prom, leading one of the fruits to make other plans for the night… until the rest of them decide to go after all. The highlight of the book though, even though it’s only a short two pages, is the story of the affair between salt and sugar, told in excruciating detail. She goes through the hesitant beginning to the true love in the middle, all the way to the inevitable ending and seeing other, um, “people” when one still hasn’t gotten over the whole thing. Top it all off with a wonderful summary of a tour of the Celestial Seasonings factory and that’s there’s a pretty damned good comic. Also, it’s a handy book to keep around on a coffee table for nosy relatives or friends, who will flip through it, thinking it’s adorable and maybe you’re not as deranged as they might think from your other choices in comics, even though they wouldn’t think that at all if they bothered to read the damned thing and not just look at the pretty pictures.
– Optical Sloth
Melanie Lewis’ PS Comics is the work of Melanie “Minty” Lewis. Generally, the characters in the comics are either fruit or terriers (muse), but sometimes they are other things like salt or lobsters or humans. The comics deal with very important universal issues that will break your spirit and make you sweat.
– Pink Raygun
Sooo funny! I hadn’t read Minty’s comics before she gave me this issue, and now I’m in love! “Fruit Pals” is just full of little mannered details that read perfectly.
– Francois Vigneault
Melanie Lewis’ PS Comics #1 and #2 are both really great, funny and smart.
– Kevin Huizenga
OKAY. Summer's over and we're heading back to school, or at least back to our Scuttlebutt blog. It's been a while and a half, but we've been busy, sitting by the pool, giggling, eating watermelon. Included in this post is a rundown of our trip to RIPE, our first ever internet kerfuffle, SPX news and switcheroos, and one rather ridiculous Secret Acres baby boom. Boy, oh, boy are we looking forward to SPX. We know we promised you the second volume of Theo Ellsworth's the Understanding Monster. The good news is that the book WILL be at the show and it will be beautifully sketched and signed. The bad news is that Theo is skipping out - but he'll be coming out to Comics Art Brooklyn to officially debut his new book. He has a a good reason (note the mention of a baby boom above). We do, however, have Sean Ford, Eamon Espey and Corinne Mucha coming to comics camp with us and they will armed with new minis, prints and even little paintings. Our guest comics mule for the road trip will be Tucker Stone, so we'lll have plenty of gossip to dish when we get back. You get yourself to SPX! See you this weekend...
ZOMG! It's Tim O'Neil for the Onion AV Club on Corinne Mucha's Get Over It! and it's a pretty darn good review, too. Tim's clearly on top of his comics game, name-dropping and comparing Corinne to none other than Kate Beaton, John Allison and Dylan Horrocks - pretty much a Mt. Rushmore of the medium. He gets it right; Corinne hits every bump on Heartbreak Road, ever stage of grief, but all told, it's actually kind of... ...fun? As Tim puts it, she "turns a book about three years of anguish into a page-turner." There IS something fun about being heartbroken, and not just the rebound. It's like a license to crazy. At least we think so. There's lots of other good stuff reviewed here, too, including Rocket Raccoon's latest, Superman and Roman Muradov (love that guy). Corinne's got some good company for Get Over It! Thank you, Tim, and thanks, AV Club, for the very kind words. You guys go read now at the link!
We are outta here! Or at least will we be in the morning. Actually, the very early morning. Sigh. But we're going to the Rhode Island Independent Publishing Expo aka RIPE! This is our first time at the show. It's also the first time FOR the show. RIPE is brand new and the brainchild of some folks we truly adore, like Mickey Z, who roped us into going way back when at the last Comic Arts Brooklyn. Yes, it is suspicious that there's a comic show in the dead of summer called RIPE. We've stopped showering and wiping for the occasion. Kidding. At our table will be Brendan Leach, of Iron Bound fame, and Sean Ford, he who has brought you Only Skin. Not only will Sean have the new and improved edition of Only Skin, he will have the fourth, yes, FOURTH issue of his new series, Shadow Hills. Playing the role of Secret Acres comics mule on the ride up will be Dave Nuss of Revival House Press, home of folks like Malachi Ward. It's a star-studded event and we don't even have to worry about crossing any borders! Doors are at noon and details are at the link below. If you're in Providence now, there's all kinds of stuff happening tonight, too. We will see you tomorrow...
The thing about Mike Dawson's newest graphic novel, Angie Bongiolatti, is that it's daunting at first glance but kind of impossible not to identify with its characters. Well, you could somehow not identify with them, and that's your right, but you'd probably be completely insane. Rob Kirby, writing for the Comics Journal, writes about Angie Biongiolatti so well, that he might just be the ideal reader for this one. He's sensitive, empathetic, politically conscious and he likes to party. He also nails Angie, the character, who can come across as enigmatic or aloof, but it's her faith and her clarity, as Rob puts it (and we're paraphrasing), that make her the best barometer ever for the most difficult of times and the craziest of people. The key, though, is Rob writing that he knows these folks and he's partied with them. It would have been a lot easier for Mike if he'd had an agenda when he drew these people. Yeah, we might have recognized the ideas, but maybe we wouldn't have recognized these people. Poor Rob! He's one of THEM! Thanks, TCJ, and Rob, especially. This was a really good one.