Ester Pärbergin Tarinoita – the Tales of Ester de Riere

Are you ready?

You better be fucking ready because this is

“Mystic and a story-teller? Diviner? Northern witch? Or maybe a metaphor for something greater and darker in nature which no mortal should dwell in without risking their sanity? What or who Ester Pärberg really was – or god help us, still is – has to be one of the biggest mysteries of our lifetime which we will never get an answer to.”

I think even this dissection will start well with those words.

This comic has to have one of the most blown-out and hilarious intros I have ever seen in my life. After going on about the mystery of Ester Pärberg and how her stories were written on leather which was torn to shreds in the year 1155 by crusaders and then patched together by our four heroes at the year 1237 and then we get this hilarious page that introduces us to the cartoonists in a way that is rich with quirky inside-jokes.

Haha! Kaleb Baconius Bottomdropping! ..god Im such a child
Haha! Kaleb Baconius Bottomdropping! ..god I’m such a child

I don’t know about you but I love these guys already.

So what is this really about?

Few years ago four teenage boys were incredibly bored at upper secondary school’s psychology class, so they started scribbling comics. One guy did one frame, the other made the next frame etc.. and this went on until they grew bored of that or the bell rang. The results made the whole of humanity weep. Later on the boys grew up (but not enough) and they decided to ink those comics again  and publish those horrendous creations. This made the Cthulhu weep.

Vintage Ester Pärberg
Vintage Ester Pärberg

When thinking of a theme for this collaboration of bored teenage boy randomness, they came up with Ester Pärberg – a crazy old goof who told the most obnoxious and weird stories imaginable. Hilarity ensued.

Gary Corsettebear, Uriel Underwearbear, Mustafa the Camel, Eternaleather-woods.. these boys never grew up, let me tell you that!
Gary Corsettebear, Uriel Underwearbear, Mustafa the Camel, Eternaleather-woods.. these boys never grew up, let me tell you that!

As you can see, the intro goes on with the animals of Eternaleather woods seeking safety in Ester’s house because their homes are being flooded. Even Bream-Andy had to seek safety in the house, despite being a fish. He couldn’t use toilet in those crazy whirlpools underwater, anyway.

Niihiinnii ettäniituota toilettia
Niihiinnii ettäniituota toilettia

So, Ester starts reading stories to the flock of wet animals who poop, piss and fart everywhere..

..and the comic itself finally shows its main content.

..I got nothing.

There’s also one funny thing about the last page’s sound effects. For some reason the pile of poo is onomatopoetically repeating the lyrics of Juice Leskinen – Jyrki Boy “Jyrki Jyrki älä tyrki, älä sanojasi syö” or in english “Oh Jyrki, Jyrki, don’t push me, don’t eat your words” ..and before you ask, no the words don’t make sense even in finnish.

The next story is just as demented and weird. It’s about siamese twins, Heinrich the human and Hurbon the “cüclopsmonkey”.

They’re siamese because they share a toe that has magical laser powers

But being siamese is not the least of their problems as they have other weird bodyparts, like the face of Alfred Bittenwurst growing out of Heinrich’s bum and a whale head pointing out of Hurbon’s back

So they are tormented by Whalecatchers and Bittenwurst-fans

Uh.. and they.. also have the “Brothers of Radish, Arne und Perttu” living in their throats and they like to escape, which is bad because their lives would feel like nothing without them.

But then Heinrich eats Hurbon thus eating himself and that’s the end for this story

I.. can’t go on. Sorry. This comic is way too crazy to go trough in some sort of “order” because it’s more random than Monty Python’s Flying Circus and Invader Zim put together

This is getting rather silly!

But it seems to have a theme of crazy siamese twins

Haha! Oh wow.

Haha.. oh wow

..okay, this takes the cake
..okay, this takes the cake


This is too crazy and random to just explain, this needs to be experienced.

Joinnn ussss..
Joinnn ussss..

Yeah, alright, this comic is very, very, VERY random

But surprisingly it also has some stories with perfectly comphrehensive plotlines.. or at least plotlines. Like the story of exterminator who fights against a satanic cult of rodents who are about to summon a turnip demon.

Or the story about the captain of a carp-shaped spaceship and his underling

Who get in trouble about interspecies-bestiality-relationship because of a misunderstanding when the subordinate tries to give CPR to the karp-captain.

This comic is absolutely out of it’s mind. This is what boredom does to human brain, and it is not a beautiful sight, but it is nevertheless amusing.

The boys also have a habit of using the language in weird and inventive ways. The puns they make are not even puns anymore (TURBO-PUNS!) they get insanely mangled and out of shape when they try to amuse themselves in the pits of boredom. This takes form both in special effects and dialogue. Here’s few examples

And because most of the dialogue is quite stricktly riddled with finnish puns that cannot be translated, I’ll give you only one example of this branch of weird use of language


The one story that got me dry-heaving from laughter is really short one, and it strats perfectly normal at first, but ascends into insanity before you can say “I am bored at a psychology class”

Why am I laughing this hard?! That made no sense! Gahh! I’ve seen this random piggy jokes only in Invader Zim

Despite it’s extreme randomness Ester Pärbergin Tarinoita holds itself together really well trough all of it’s 143 pages! It’s no wonder, though as these guys are all somewhat professional cartoonists and KP Alare has the title of graphic designer under his belt and JP Ahonen has an actual career of a cartoonist with his strip comic Villimpi Pohjola (Northern Overexposure). The other guys who took part in this project don’t have anything on web that google could find for me, but they are not teenagers anymore, either. The gang is experienced and know how to work as a team and put out a good comic.

Which brings me to wonder.. WHY THE FUCK DOESN’T THIS COMIC HAVE ANY AWARDS!? When I met the guys at the festival I could swear they mentioned that they won something over their book, but I can’t find anything. The award “Taivaallisin Pienlehti” (Most Heavenly Small-Publishing) didn’t go to them this year and I can’t belive my fucking eyes. There’s something seriously wrong with Helsinki Comic Festival staff if they really have not awarded even a wooden spoon to these guys.

Who the fuck won the award if it was not them?



I’m sorry for being so judgemental and biased but-

No, wait. I am certainly not sorry, it’s the cruel truth that finnish female sarjakuva is absolute and utter shit. If you don’t belive me, listen to what I got to say – I bought “BLAW” but Circus Femme Fatale didn’t even pique my interest in the slightest.

Now BLAW and Phantomland are both drawn by females, but it is still not official femsarjakuva-brand of finnish comics. You actually have to somehow admit being a part of it and do nothing else but comics in which only theme ever is The Vagina. I’m not even kidding. And I know without looking that Circus Femme Fatale is not worth any attention it got and definately not worth any money.

I’ll go deeper into the theme of finnish female cartoonists once I do few more positive dissections. I’ll announde a theme month when I do.

EDIT: apparently this wasn’t even a small publishing “pienlehti” so it wouln’t have counted. Silly me. But all my statements still stand. The winner sucks, this deserves some sort of award, and female sarjakuva sucks.

But now, back to Ester.

This comic was the best I saw in the whole Helsinki Comic Festival, no other publishing came even near this one. Ester Pärbergin Tarinoita is funny, light-hearted, silly, professional and high-quality mash-up that truly put a smile on my face and left me with a giddy and good mood. Where Kane failed and didn’t bring the humor crazy enough, these guys succeed and throw it over the edge.

I can see the boys were somewhat influenced by a very popular, dirty humor sarjakuva we have here called “Myrkky” (Poison) but the influence is not overwhelming and they have plenty of insane originality that only they can put out as a team.

This left me feeling AWESOME

Ps. Flash warning







Gir “Let’s go to my room, pig!” from Invader Zim created by Jhonen Vasquez



14 Responses to “Ester Pärbergin Tarinoita – the Tales of Ester de Riere”

  1. 1 Link
    October 25, 2009 at 10:40 am

    Lmao, ‘Turbo-Puns’ xD

    It’s OK, I think we’re all 3 year olds who still laugh at the word ‘poo’, that pig-drink-mixing-thing was awesome xD

    May I say those drawings of you are getting more and more disturbing? ._.

    • 2 Erkki
      October 25, 2009 at 7:46 pm

      If you got the reference, you’ll get FOUR HUNDRED BABIES.. er.. POINTS!

      Do you mean that “join usss..”-picture xD? Yeah, I’m so sorry about that. I’ll pay your therapy sessions, I swear.

      • 3 Link
        October 25, 2009 at 8:22 pm


        No I mean these bloody weird-ass I’m-gay-and-liek-2-mayk-luv-to-teh-shiny-animu-characters-but-I’m-not-really-gay-swishy-hair-sparkly-eyes pictures D:

        No therapy can fix this xD

  2. 4 Ivan the Rabrabian
    October 27, 2009 at 3:39 pm

    This has to be the most random thing ever 😀 And it’s even funny! It reminds me of things I drew out of boredom in school, but this is so much more professional.

    And yeah, Dan Deacon is one of teh most br00tal party musicians in da world. Something like trve pvre norwegian black metal 😛

    • 5 Erkki
      October 27, 2009 at 7:40 pm

      It is! And it is exactly what you described it as!

      I fucking love Dan Deacon, his music rapes my mind and ears but I still love it. I’d so wish to get on one of his gigs or parties or whatever.
      Ha! Those guys are hilarious! This one has to be my favourite, though:

  3. October 28, 2009 at 10:02 pm

    They didn’t get the pienlehti award because Ester Pärberg isn’t a pienlehti. You also have to send your work to the judges several weeks before the comic festival which also does a good job reducing the amount of contestants. I got my comics from print three days before the event, for example 😀 Not that I wanted to partake in the contest anyway.

    Heh, femcomics… sometimes they’re rather honest and charming but then you also get the annoying stuff that practically screams RARRR LOOK AT MY GLORIOUS MENSTRUATING WOMANHOOD LOOK LOOK LOOK.

    • 7 Erkki
      October 28, 2009 at 11:24 pm

      Yeah, I figured you didn’t even want to take part in it (I’ve got this “shy and silent, but strong” kind of picture of you) so I didn’t wonder you didn’t parttake in it, but damn it! They aren’t?! I thought Daily Hero Press was so small that it counted as pienlehti. To be honest now that I think.. I don’t know what is the criteria. Seitti-publishing publishes at least four different comics but I see them as pienlehti too.
      Gaahhh I need to bore deeper into this! But hey, thanks for correcting me!

      Where on earth have you seen charming and honest femcomics D:? Even Katja Tukiainen – Rusina was able to tickle my vomit-reflex. It’s nice that women are proud of themselves and break taboos and I do like vagina quite a lot but there’s a line between “tacky” and “honest”.
      That seemed to break into a rant pretty fast.. But hey, if you got any suggestions do mention them! Send an e-mail or something if you feel like it, I need to get 3-4 different kind of femcomic so I got to research.

      • November 1, 2009 at 6:04 pm

        Hehe, I don’t think I’d describe myself quite like that… But it sounds pretty cool so by all means do keep that impression.

        I think you’re out of the pienlehti business as soons as you have a publisher, no matter how small it is. I guess it’s more fair for the artists who aren’t that lucky to have one.

        Uuuh… sadly I don’t have a lot of suggestions, I’ve read a bit of this and that over the years and don’t remember most of the titles. But now that you mention it, I’m not sure how many of them would’ve classified as femcomics anyway. Where does the line between “femcomics” and “comics by women” go anyway? Is it in the subject? Attitude? Style?

      • 9 Erkki
        November 3, 2009 at 2:48 pm

        Well, it’s good to know what kind of impression you leave on people. Though I don’t even want to know what people think of me judging by this blog.

        That actually makes sense. duh. Even that making a tiiiiny publisher is much like just making a collaboration.

        I should actually research deeper into this subject. Some people call themselves finnish female cartoonists, some belong into this small “alliance” and then there’s the publisher Parrakas Nainen which specializes in only female-made comics. But whenever a new female cartoonist pops up they get clumped into this broad cast of femcartoonist. I’m not sure if a femcartoonist would be called as such if they made a popular comic that didn’t have a heavy influence from the feministic movement, but I would not call anyone femcartoonist if they didn’t bring the message of feminism. It’s really fucking stupid to divide cartoonists like that, anyway but it can’t be helped anymore.

  4. November 1, 2009 at 11:11 pm

    I swear I’ve never laughed this much while reading a blog entry. Well, mostly it was the pictures but still, oh wow.

  5. 12 Emmi Valve
    November 16, 2009 at 10:37 am

    Hi. Thank you for not reading my comic. Maybe you´ll end up seeing some of my work somewhere, and not be able to close your eyes soon enough, and then be forced to create a real opinion. I´m not takin this shit too seriously tough, but if you like, i can send you a painting made by using my bubic hair as a brush and my menstruation blood as a paint. (it´s allways a delight to google my own name. And if you have any sense of irony, you will see it in this message.)

    • 13 Erkki
      November 16, 2009 at 4:42 pm

      I have to admit, I cheated a bit and actually went to see some of your comics before using Circus Femme Fatale as the pawn of my random rage. They lack the punchline, are unfunny and just scream “I’M AN ARTEEEST!” which is very much Not My Thing. You’ve found your style, though and the colours are so trippy it makes me want to pop my bottle of absinthe.
      Could you also use some of your breastmilk with a brush made from your armpit hair? Otherwise I don’t think the painting would fit on the wall of my tea room. It would be so perfect between the puke and diahhrea paintings I did myself..

      ..except they are not paintings, but part of my living room carpet cut out and hung on a wall, but hey! They look like art, unlike some other scribbles and comics I’ve had to see!

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