Review: Suburban Jungle: Rough Housing
Guest review by Ace
Suburban Jungle was a web comic done by John “The Gneech” Robey that started on February 1, 1999. It starred a young tigress, named Tiffany, who is trying to make a career of acting and modeling while holding down numerous temp jobs. Along the way she meets the Kurt Russell-esque Leonard Lion, Leona Lioness (no relation to Leonard), and many others such as Drezzer Wolf and Conrad Tiger. It was slice of life with the characters residing in the fictional city. It was light, campy and a general good read.
It was the web comic that made me become a furry.
When Suburban Jungle ended in November 6, 2009 it felt like a giant punch to the gut. I had only been in the fandom ten years in the fandom because of Suburban Jungle. I loved the characters, especially Tiffany, Leona, as well as Leonard, Conrad and everyone’s favorite gay uncle, Drezzer. It was hard to fill those holes. I had never gotten to the opportunity to read Never, Never (which I found out actually came before SJ in terms of production) and while I liked other web comics, they didn’t hold my attention like SJ did.
So imagine my surprise when found out that The Gneech did another SJ comic starting in 2016. This one was a sequel but didn’t feature the same characters. Instead, the main character was a cheeger (the hybrid result of a tiger and a cheetah, in this case Comfort Tiger the sister of Suburban Jungle star Tiffany and her husband the code speaking Dover Cheetah), named Charity Cheeger.
The main cast consists of Charity, Langley Lupina, Roxie Fox, Rufo Redwolf, Parker Peacock and Bounce, who is an otter. All of them have different personalities and yet have enough of the old cast to make you remember the good ole days. Charity and Langley’s chemistry will remind you of Tiffany and Leona, yet Langley is also very different. She’s more a joker or a troll, not doing things out of malice at all. Roxie is more laid back and Parker is a little shy due to bullying. Bounce is the tough and silent guy. And Rufo is, as The Gneech himself puts it “flirty, pansexual, and Latino (in that order).” I didn’t bring it up but even then, the characters are also different in that they are diverse sexually too.
That’s not to say that old favorites don’t pop up. I won’t give it away but at least two characters that I personally loved make a return, briefly. It was an enjoyable stroll down memory lane without being intrusive or out of place. The Gneech really pulled it off enough that this writer has clamored for another character to return.
The basic premise is that Charity, the niece of Leonard Lion and Tiffany Tiger, takes over as manager of a hotel her uncle invested in using her aunt’s money. Along the way, she meets the rest of the crew, battles giant crabs and deals with living in a new area and new people. It’s a fun experience to both read and to experience, whether you’re a new reader or an older one. There are plenty of references, gags and thought provoking comments to make one glad to have read Suburban Jungle: Rough Housing (found at http://roughhouse.suburbanjungle.com )
All in all, it’s an exciting slice of life romp that features characters both familiar and new. I’d give it a 10 out of 10 paws, but I also admit I’m biased having been a long time fan.
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