ReviewS of the Reglar Wiglar

Reglar Wiglar #4

The folks at Reglar Wiglar take the structure of your basic music fanzine and turn it inside out to produce a very funny zine that takes no prisoners. There is some "real" music commentary, like Joey Germ's "One Word Record Reviews" (Bakesale is "pensive" and Whip Smart is "popular") but most of it is low satire, poking fun at music culture and music zines, They "interview" the hip hop band "White Bred and Honky MC" and "MotherScratcher."—Factsheet 5

Funny fucking zine outta Chicago that does many beautiful things: 1. Explore the stupidity and of evilness of those "psychological personality profiles" that shitty jobs make you take to see if you're dishonest enough to appear honest. 2. throws crappy CDs onto the busy Western Avenue and describes their demise. 3. Creates a parody (I hope) band interview (The Woodrows) complete with an exhaustive discography. I have no idea what Reglar Wiglar is.—ZEEN

Reglar Wiglar #5

Reglar Wiglar gets its point across that "alternative music" is no alternative so much faster using satire than rant zines do with rage. Editor Christopher Auman wonders if he'll be labeled a sell-out because his zine looks so DIY that it must be backed by The Gap. No chance, this is the real thing. This issue, Tom Ziegler turns in his piquant responses to a psychological profile he filled out for a job at a record store. Anyone who has ever had to take one of these and answer whether their personal life or $4.25 job was worth more will feel vindicated after reading it. Brilliant spoof interview and 100 albums discography with the "Woodrows."—Factsheet 5

Reglar Wiglar #7

Not your average zine of bad jokes and adolescent party humor by any means. Auman shoots for real satire and succeeds admirably in his work. His version of the Chicago Monopoly* game was an amusing spoof of the city's neighborhoods and politics. Special rules like electing Da Mayor and staying out of Cook County jail will have non-Chicagoans at a disadvantage. Classic mock interview with Manchester pop kings, Mirage, sudden fiction and a whole page dedicated to T.R. Miller's Luhey. Factsheet 5

* written by Tom Zeigler

Reglar Wiglar #8

Right on! These guys know for sure how to piss people off. Provocative and entertaining. The Wiglar consists of reviews of movies you've never heard of and hope you never will, as goes with the bands, not one positive review, there's an interview with a band I doubt ever existed, some short stories and more. The whole zine is copyrighted and recently got bought out by the Nike Corporation. Personally, I think they write the Readers section themselves during their monthly stay in jail. They've got a rotten attitude towards everybodys, they've got no respect, they're not serious at all and they're a bunch of wasted drunken wankers and that's why I like them and their fukken zine.—Join Kai (Denmark)

This Is horrible. A Weenis Interview, some trivial horse doo-doo, and a couple comic strips. Maybe If you're one of those urban city grunge rockers you should go pick this up.—Heartattack

This is kind of like 1000 Interlocking Pieces, actually. They seem to have a vaguely similar sense of humor, although Chris makes stuff up more. There’s an interview with the Woodrows (which is either a made-up band or a band that lies a lot), some movie reviews (Lies! Lies! They're not even real movies!), and some fiction (nothing but lies!) There's also some letters, a guide to not being busy, a Midwest Scene Report ("Gary, Indiana: Nope; Akron, Ohio, Nope."), and some comix, of which I really liked, although mostly for the artwork, "The Righton Kids", and their guide to doing a zine.—Throwrug

Reglar Wiglar #9

The big story this time is that Alternative Music has been killed deader than disco. The articles detailing this seem to be well-researched and reliable, but Chris slips up in showing his ignorance of the fact that "No-more-big-pants-but-still-keepin'-it-real" MC Hammer is now just Hammer. Duh! Send him some money and an angry letter.Throwrug

Is this for real? They manufacture interviews with stupid bands, but I can't tell if they're fake--especially considering I've never heard of the bands that get interviewed in zine anyway. The story about the Death of Alternative Music isn't even as funny as what really happened. Ooh look: 5 pages of record reviews. The cool comics get buried under the stupid ones.—Zine World

Auman consistently makes me laugh, parodying the music and zine world like no one else. The music reviews are some of the goofiest and snottiest that I've ever seen. They sneer their way through Ace Frehley (all the second-hand stores are already overstocked), Black Fork ("They stick their fork into big, meaty chunks of power chords and shove it in your mouth"), and lowercase ("Oh, how I would love to launch into some half-assed metaphor about how the concept of lowercase relates to the music of this band"). They also share the dirt on celebrities, asking where Hammer is now and voting Ash the "Most difficult Band to Look At." Chris kicks it all off with four hilarious versions of the issue's introductions to be read depending on your mood.—Factsheet 5

Reglar Wiglar #10

RW has really progressed since I last saw an issue about 3 years ago. This issue has a cool editorial by Chris, some letters, humorous interviews with Annie Baldwell and White Bred & Honky MC (Keeping it real [stale] in 98), stuff about ska, a great down with people rant, an interesting story about a drug sniffing dog, record, zine & show reviews, comics and a bunch of ads. Another one of my favorite zines, my only criticism is that it seems to need more graphics within the article pages.—Mutant Renegade Zine

Hey, this is pretty funny. Yeah, I like it. It's all making fun of popular music culture through the use of fake interviews with phoney bands. There's interviews with a Lilith-esque singer, two white rappers, and a ska band--this one nails everything that's funny about the ska scene. Chris makes fun of every current trend in music today. Hmmm, I think I would too, if I looked as much like the lead singer of Everclear as Chris does.—Throwrug

This was surprisingly funny and enjoyable. There are a few fake musician interviews, one of which is a hilarious conversation with a ska band comprised of hundreds of members, and another with "White Bred and Honky MC" which is funnier than it sounds. A couple of humorous essays, some records reviews (some real, some fake, I think), zine reviews, and some decent comics add to the package. A lot of fun!—Zine World

Reglar Wiglar #11

Fake interviews, but they're funny (fake interviews are difficult to pull off humorously; I've tried, with resounding failure [not that my failing to be able to do something is proof that it's difficult, necessarily])! Also, some other funny stuff, letters, and a batch of reviews. I like the cover, but I didn't like the comics much this time around. Easy come, etc.—Throwrug

In living, bright red color, the target featured on the newest Wiglar will no doubt be useful to those who will feebly retaliate the barbs this Chicago mainstay subtly deploys. Throwing together real band features like the Goblins (well, at least I think they're real--they have records out anyway, I've seen 'em!) alongside the impossibly prolific genius of The Woodrows, it's often hard, yet pleasantly refreshing to figure out if Mr. Auman and Company are just fucking with you r not. Of course, there are more direct hits like ever-fresh "Idiotorial" and Giganta Corporation's President's Message, or perhaps the title-clinching "I Hate Your Band, I Hate Your Zine". This zine will infuriate or confuse morons of all types: your neighbors, scensters, zinesters, red-headed step children, you name it. With a name like Reglar Wiglar, it's gotta be good.—ZEEN

You think you never want to see another music zine, and then comes Reglar Wiglar. Imagine a punk rock humor zine. Too difficult for you? Not if you're the editor of this hilarious zine. The mock interviews with punk bands are the best, meaning this reviewer was laughing so hard tears were running down my cheeks. A great irreverent stab at the poses, personalities and politics of the music scene. Reglar Wiglar is the Spinal Tap of zines.—Desert Moon Periodicals

RW comes off as an in-joke. The first section of the zine reads like a collection of memos to employees of RW, and the band interviews that follow are obviously fictitious, but the humor isn't obvious. Zine and record reviews fill a few pages, and comics consume the latter half of the zine. A humorous jab at Oasis' Noel Gallagher is the highlight.—Zine World

Reglar Wiglar #12

This wasn't bad, but parts were rather contrived attempts as gonzo journalism. Some worked better than others. Most of it was pretty entertaining, like a letter from McDonald's concerning the McRib sandwich, the Van Halen concert, psychological screening for jobs, and a review of Nothingness. Unfortunately, it had these waste of paper advertisement cards strewn throughout, just like glossy magazines, except they were little xeroxes to fall out and annoy me. I don't need little pieces of shit to fall on me and make a mess. Other than that, and the drug references I didn't really get, I liked the zine and it's end comic, "Meg".—MAXIMUMROCKNROLL

Another smartas load ‘o fun with the Polkaholics, a Psychologically Unfit profile exam, Van Frickin’ Halen, Death Fungus, How to Buy a Good Review, a Woodrow's comic by Joey Germ, some comics by Stepan Chapman, and Hilary Abuhove and another Idiotorial by editor Chris Auman. As always, there’s also a slew of no-holds-barred reviews of music and zines.—Dirty Hand Media

This guy thinks he's pretty funny, with his made-up letters from readers, and his made-up record reviews, and his made-up, um, tax forms—oh wait—I guess he is funny. My mistake. There's also a non-made-up review interview with the Pollkaholics and some stuff like that. This could really use another run past a proofreader, but I get the feeling that Mr. Auman, despite his preponderance of "contributors" with suspicious sounding names, is in actuality, sad and alone. So what can you do? He also sent a three year old comics called Woodrow Comics #1 which treads that tightrope between stupid and clever and eventually, while not falling to one side or the other slips off with one leg on either side and racks up its crotch really bad on the highwire.—Throwrug

Reglar Wiglar #13

Feels like a punk zine, but barely touches on the traditional things that make up a punk zine. RW has a sense of humor, a triple-digit IQ, and doesn't take itself or the sound of philosophy too damned seriously. There's only one interview, for example, but it's with a band called the Polkaholics, and it devolves into enjoyable chaos almost immediately. The record reviews are worth reading for the attitude alone and there's an expanded review of Imaginary Album by the Nonentities ("the best group of invisible mime musicians to come out in a long time"). Is this for real? Is any of it? Does it matter? Farther from the usual, Tom Ziegler shares a "psychological profile" test he had to take when applying for a job, publisher Chris challenges the tradition of petty bribery by offering to sell rave reviews "for the low, low price of $100," and the comics in the back teeter on the brink of existentialism (either that, or I just didn't get 'em). A bonkers zine, for bonkers times.—Zine World

One of Chicago’s longest-running and ruthlessly cunning zines. Editor Chris Auman turns down the disso-meter a coupe notches but worry not, as this still has the goods. Interviews with Booker Noe, The New Rob Robbies, and the Weird Lovemakers, lots of comics including the regular installment of Woodrow Comics and reprints from Alternator and the Assassin and The Whiner, a hilarious Midwest Journal piece, and the usual no-hold-barred zine and record reviews. If you don’t know this zine, get knowin’ NOW.—Dirty Hand Media

Reglar Wiglar #14

The high points in this zine are Jesse Reklaw's "Slow Wave" dream comics, and the nifty blue cover with the cloud motif. Otherwise, this is your average, smirking punk zine. It has music reviews, band interviews, and lots of scratchy comics. The opening "Idiotorial" consists of the same sentence repeated over and over again to fill up the page. There's an interview with Sam Henderson, cartoonist and gas bag. And there are plenty of sophomoric jokes. Clean, simple layout; newsprint stock.—A Reader's Guide to the Underground Press

Guaranteed to confuse and/or maim 98% of the general population. Chicago’s meanest fun pulp continues it’s mangied prophecy with another embarrassing Idiotorial, snide column, interviews with the Fairmount Girls, Ether Frolics, and the comic genius of Sam Henderson. Of course, we are again treated with One Word Record Review ads many more music/zine reviews that can be read between the lines. This issue also has some entertaining restaurant reviews and more comics than ever.Dirty Hand Media

Reglar Wiglar #15

A chunky selection of comics from Hans Rickheit, Jesse Reklaw and Bill Driscoll made me wish this zine would ditch its bland mix of features and focus exclusively on comic art. Instead, we get too much puffery about the indy music biz, a clipped and uncomfortable interview with cartoonist Dan Clowes, and in incongruous spike of high-quality writing reprinted from Julie Halpren's zine, Get Well Soon. Disinterested and flat, the fizz is out of this formula.A Reader's Guide to the Underground Press

Reglar Wiglar #16

Chris Auman, editor, likes music and he likes comics, and the reviews are a solid lot — even those of the music. This zine is on newsprint, yet always concealed in an eye-grabbing colored cover. The tone goes between obnoxious and outstandingly stupid, which I’ll take. The interview with Peter Bagge held my attention the longest. Then the twelve pages of comics — Jesse Reklaw and Hans Rickheit, ooh.—Zine Thug

Reglar Wiglar #17

Great comedy writing in this issue’s “Idiotorial”, about how, in this time of crisis, we Americans should be more careful with our language. No more thinking outside the box, and: Our cars, our hairstyles, our stereos — these things don’t need to be off the hook. None of it needs to be off the hook. Not anymore. Let’s get it all back on the hook. Let’s get it back in the box and onto the hook where it belongs. Let’s get organized. Fake band interview with “The White Strokes”, more comics. Contains photo(s) of the author.—Zine Thug

I think you can tell a book by its cover, but it's harder with zines. I was still at the laundry (why local shop, why?) when I read the Reglar Wiglar and I admit to being a bit put off by the Wiglar's screamingly bright yellow cover - the basic comic didn't help. But it was either this or soak up some daytime TV with the rest of the guys washing their socks. First up was a surprisingly funny and generous interview with a guy who didn't bath or shower for 18 months (glad I didn't have to do that interview). I calmed down, stopped watching the spin cycle, and read the zine. Hugely funny pieces on the White Strokes (not a mistake) and fast food reviews followed. There are also loads of record reviews, some in haiku, some are one-word reviews, and I liked the amount of comix here, including a couple by Stepan Chapman and half-a-dozen Slow Wave by Jesse Reklaw - those comix where people (like Davida for instance!) send in their dreams to be drawn. I'd read the Wiglar again. I won't even wait for laundry day.—Xerography Debt

Reglar Wiglar #18

Punk zine with lots of newsprint pages and a silly sense of humor. This issue features interviews with Fleshies and the Woodrows, two bands I've never heard of. The latter band apparently has an endless discography and the guitarist, Mattowar, of the former band is quoted as saying, "Rock is not about thinking." There's also an interview with Sluggo, a dude who has a lot of experience booking bands in Chicago and Detroit (and now I will have to watch my Beavis & Butthead videos to see his cameo.) By far the funniest interview in the zine is a fictional one with Enenen where the interviewer, Joey Germ, uncovers the truth about Slick Brady, Enenen's psychotic alter ego. The issue is also chock full of music reviews including "One Word Record Reviews" and "Haiku Reviews." And there are even comics. One called "Chrome Fetus" which follows the adventures of a mysterious teddy bear in a trench coat and another called Peg where the women's breast outlines are creepily drawn (possibly saying something about the illustrator's distorted perception of women — although, the one where Peg goes to the temp agency is hilarious.) There's even more to Reglar Wiglar; zine reviews, other miscellaneous humor, and ads and it all only costs $2. Reviewed by Thrill Racer.—Zine Thug

Lots of attempts at humor, some of which are actually humourous. Best is an hysterical interview with a (presumbaby) fictitious band, the Woodrows. There are some record reviews too, and I'm not sure whether they're real. The fiction that's undisputedly fiction is pretty good: could use some editing. Screwy comics at the end made me laugh out loud. Yeah, I had a good time with this one. Don't know what a wiglar is, but this sure ain't your regular wiglar.—Zine World

As Mr. Burns would say, hi-larious. Interviews with Fleshies, The Woodrows and Sluggo made me laugh out loud enough so that the weird man on the bus kept staring at me. Even the record reviews are funny. Some British. Others are haikus. The comics aren't as funny, but hey, you can't win 'em all, right?—MAXIMUMROCKNROLL

Reglar Wiglar #20

Picked this out of the pile because of the interview with Greg Cartwright of the Reigning Sound. I’m usually not too big on interviews written as articles because I’d rather just let the musicians tell the stories themselves, but I must say, it’s a great article. The author paints a pretty thorough picture of Cartwright, from his beginnings with the Compulsive Gamblers to his days in the sun as one-third of the Oblivians all the way up to his present band. It did what a good interview should do: it made me want to listen to the band, and in the case of the Reigning Sound, a band that I had previously dismissed. And it ends with a great quote from Greg: “There’s always going to be a band that makes you say, ‘Maybe I do like ska!’ Or whatever kind of music you thought you didn’t like.” The rest of the zine holds up, as well. Lots of comics and a really funny bastardized Mad Libs, the theme of which was “College Radio DJ.” Cool stuff.—Razorcake

It’s always fun to receive a new issue of the Wiglar, zinedom’s flagship of irreverent, snarky music interviews and reviews. This particular issue includes interviews with cartoonist Johnny Ryan, rockers The Reigning Sound, and a pair of rock critics/ journalists. There are also funny-if-not-particularly-informative record reviews and a bunch of comics, from various contributors, that I will describe as “uneven.” Oh, there’s also some sort of short story, which I skipped entirely ‘cause that’s how I roll.—Zine World

Reglar Wiglar #21

Printed, full-size independent culture-type zine with ads. The editor interviews himself, there are interviews with artist Gary Panter, bands D.O.A., The Hold Steady, Lying in States, and the Peelers, plenty of record reviews, and pages of comics. All in all, each section has variety and there's something for every punk, nerd, comic-and-indy-music-loving geek out there. That's not a bad review by the way!—Zine World

Included in this issue of Reglar Wiglar are interviews with Joe Shithead (DOA), Lying in States, and the Peelers, as well as an article featuring Gary Panter, which article-wise, is the standout of the group. The wry self-deprecation of Reglar Wiglar makes the standardized elements of music/arts magazines worth reading, for example, haiku record reviews, American Idol judges as fictitious guest reviewers, poetry ("The Ironic Mustache of Wicker Park"), and the ridiculous, inconsequential featurette piece "Fruitless Internet Searches."—Punk Planet

A fun alternative to mainstream music magazines, Reglar Wiglar offers loads of interviews, reviews, comic strips, and entertaining randomness in between. The great part about the music reviews is that they go on for pages, but the format periodically changes. In one issue they start off with standard reviews, but then switch things up with one-word reviews, haiku reviews (damage has been done/with crunchy, distorted chords/control is not lost), fake celebrity reviews, and a guest reviewer. As for the randomness in between, the first page features an interview of the publisher, by the publisher, and the last page includes screenshots of fruitless google searches (for example, "Friends of Snuffaluffagus"). —From “A beginner's guide to 'zines”, Wilkes-Barre Beacon

One of those zines I’ve been hearing about for years but never had a chance to read until now. It’s mostly about punk rock, with the requisite band interviews and record reviews, but there’s an overall sense of goofy humor pervading it that makes it far more enjoyable than the average punk newsprint zine. I especially enjoyed the interview with Joey Shithead of DOA, and Benny “Bongos” Tully’s thoughts on record collections vs. the ubiquitous iPod. The record reviews are also more interesting than usual — some are in the form of haiku, and others are summed up in one word only. Worth checking out.—Xerography Debt

Made me more regular than bran. though I like to say 'bran" out loud more than I like to say "reglar wiglar". Try saying "bran", you'll dig where I'm coming from.—Roctober

Reglar Wiglar #22

Reglar Wiglar was first published from 1993 to 2005. The zine’s title is inspired by an Errol Morris documentary and this is the first issue in almost a decade. Back in its heyday this zine was known for its playful satire. As Chris mentions in a note that accompanied the zine, Reglar Wiglar was “a parody and satire, and my reaction to the ‘alternative’ music frenzy occupying much of mainstream music press at the time”. I really enjoyed the first twenty pages that detail myriad jobs Chris had in his teenage and college years. There’s the paper route, lifeguarding, working at a pharmacy, working at a restaurant and a bunch more. Auman’s humor is crisp and understated. The second half of the issue is filled with short satirical bits and comics, most notably, Donald Trump reviewing an old Metallica album.—Zine Nation

Years ago former Chicago-based Chris Auman used to regularly drop of copies of his newsprint zine Reglar Wiglar at Quimby's for the free section, and it never failed to make me chuckle. I remember one time he printed a letter from some guy who was angry that he was being sent Reglar Wiglar in the mail, and he wished to be removed from the mailing list. The editorial response was a congratulations that this reader's letter was selected as letter of the month, so it got to be published, and the prize was a free subscription to Reglar Wiglar. Genius. Chris moved to Madison and went digital with his zine, but this new issue is the first print one in almost ten years. It is hilarious of course, and I think you'll agree: blowing his allowance on Space Invaders, analyzing which numbers are awesome, hungover poetry, why you should appreciate Flock of Seagulls, Donald Trump vs Metallica and more.—Quimby's

The existence of this zine, and even my review here of it, perfectly illustrates 'zine time'. You see, 'zine time' doesn't work like normal time - it's MUCH s l o w e r. In fact it's more like 'geological time'. In his "Idiotorial", Chris Auman notes that this is only the second issue of Reglar Wiglar to be published in TEN YEARS. Similarly, I actually received this zine to review back in 2015, and now here we are in 2020 and it's time for me to present you with my review! The feature here is 'Book of Jobs Part II'. We all LOVE reading about other people and their jobs - the shittier the better. This kind of material is one of the greatest things about Zines. Exhibit A being Dishwasher Pete and his legendary zine Dishwasher. Here Chris also writes about working as a dishwasher, as well as telemarketer, short order cook, and cinema ticket-ripper. Some of the funniest parts are anecdotes about co-workers, like the one guy who told Chris that he was so happy when he finished the workday that he ran home. A MYSTERY, however: Chris writes that while working at an Italian fast food place, he and his workmates ate "beef buddies" and mozz sticks. I know what mozz [mozzarella] sticks are, but what the hell are "beef buddies"?

Following the work tales is a 'Donald Trump Reviews' section and this was VERY interesting to me, especially since this zine is PT [Pre Trump]. Chris has Trump reviewing Justin Bieber and Iggy Azalea albums. These are well done! He really seems to get Trump's style, and amazingly there is no evidence of TDS [Trump Derangement Syndrome]! In a ZINE!! [Of course, the TRUE test would be to examine the 2017-to-present issues...]—Blackguard Journal

Reglar Wiglar #23

Reglar Wiglar began publishing in 1993, and after a long hiatus, this is the second recent issue. Like the previous issue, this one is broken up into two main sections. The first chronicles many of the jobs the zine maker has had, as a dishwasher, a law clerk, a telemarketer, and plenty of other hospitality jobs. The second half of the zine has some satirical and humour bits and comics, like Donald Trump reviewing Justin Bieber, a spoof job posting, and “hungover poetry.” Personally, the more straightforward and earnest writing in the first half resonated with me more than the comedy writing in the second half.—Zine Nation

Reglar Wiglar #24

Hilarious account of Auman's job history, sprinkled with witty banter about several musical venues and acts as well as other miscellany. This zine is particularly funny if you happen to be a Chicago native.—Quimby's

Reglar Wiglar #25

Chris started Reglar Wiglar 25 years ago in a basement apartment in Chicago, wanting to be in bands and start a record label, but instead he started a zine. His sense of satire is hilarious—Mad Lib-style record label press releases, haiku record reviews, comics, fake ass band interviews—a slice of '90s pop culture as fed through a Chicago filter.—Quimby's

Reglar Wiglar #26

Reglar Wiglar has me wistful for an era of the internet I hardly even live through—let’s be real, I was playing Webkinz for at least the first third of the Reglar Wiglar blog’s existence. Is the blog going out of style? Has it been out of style? At odds with the character limit of Twitter and the immediate gratification (and miniscule word count) of the memes that capture so much of my attention, I wonder with some frequency after the lost possibilities of the blog medium as a way to circulate actual thoughts and even thoughtful humor. Now, Reglar Wiglar doesn’t exactly do this (and excuse me for using the review form to pontificate about online media), but it is goofy, fun, and it doesn’t fill me with existential dread like literally everything else on the internet. If you like band name jokes, this is the zine for you; it’s chock full of ‘em.—Jimmy Cooper, Razorcake

© 1993-2021 Reglar Wiglar Magazine

"Getting it all wrong since 1993."