REVIEW: Critical Botch – The Comic #4 (2021)

A Comic by Valente Ochoa based on the podcast by various AEW Wrestlers

For fans of the antics of AEW wrestlers outside of the ring, I’m sure a decent amount may have watched a Twitch Stream / YouTube show called Critical Botch. Critical Botch is a Dungeons and Dragons podcast helmed by Brandon Cutler as a DM and players including Orange Cassidy, Chuck Taylor, Colt Cabana, Leva Bates, Peter Avalon, and Trent Baretta, the show has been running somewhat sporadically for a few years now. This comic that we are looking at is a hilarious adaptation of this show, once made available in one of the Pro Wrestling Crates as a pack-in. Written and drawn by Valente Ochoa, the comic does an amazing job of taking what can occasionally be a meandering series of in-jokes and pop culture refences and massaging it into a humorous comic book adventure. This is a look at part four of the series, for more click below.

Critical Botch Vol 1

Critical Botch Vol 2

Critical Botch Vol 3

“In part one of the Clog Roads series, the Murderhobos take a break from Murderhobo-ing and go through the sacks they stole from the Ironhaven prison. They discover a few interesting items, but Rick discovers the strangest of them all when he uncovers the amulet of Oolash!”

I have stated in previous reviews that Ochoa has a knack for taking parts of the podcast that could be considered somewhat “boring” and making them the highlights of the comic. For all intents and purposes, the section of the show that this book comes from is basically just “The Murder Hobos” looking at loot that they gained after their previous encounter after fleeing on horseback from a town they went on a huge crime spree in. Each character digs through a number of bags they lifted from a police station looking for worthwhile treasures. Highlights include a set of magical stones that allow one holder to teleport to the other and an ornate broach that appears to be the doorway to an abyssal creature named Oolash that is an agent of chaos of some nature.

What follows is a ridiculous scheme to do as the fairly evil sounding Oolash is demanding through Rick – some sort of ritual including a fire and a sacrifice of blood with a vague notion that the party could be rewarded for following through. The whole thing seems to be driving Lorelai crazy which is pretty funny to see. For this particular D&D party, saying they are impulsive is quite the understatement, much to the detriment of whatever plans I’ve sure Mr. Cutler has laid down for his game. We’ll see what happens in the next issue and whether the party benefits from this in any way as opposed to becoming mindless minions of Oolash.

If you are looking for an underground comedy D&D comic, and are a wrestling fan – look no further than Critical Botch! These issues seem to be getting better each time, which makes them always fun to read, and the artwork has improved from issue one quite a bit. These are still an independently made product, so it’s quite impressive to see the care that has been taken to make this seem like any other comic you might come across, and has a similar structure and tone to many webcomics that were HUGE in the mid 2000’s. I will be reading more of this ASAP, so stay tuned for more reviews!

You can find Valente’s works on his Lulu pages Critical Botch and Bedlam City Comics. He can also be found on Twitter, and the webpage for Bedlam City Comics.

For the original show this is based on:

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