Jobnik!: Moxy Fruvous, poor romantic choices, and the second Intifada

Miriam Libicki is an American woman from a Orthodox Jewish family who, in 1999 moved to Israel and joined the Israeli army. Because she didn't speak Hebrew very well and was flagged as having possible psychological issues, she was assigned to being a secretary at a remote medical base. This comic, "Jobnik!," details her experiences in the IDF, as the Second Intifada begins to ramp up and clashes between the army and Palestinian forces begin to become more uncommon.

However, the Intifada is only a backdrop to Libicki's IDF experience, which mostly consisted of getting crap from the older soldiers, getting involved romantically with douchebags, and burning old medical folders. Updates to the situation appear periodically on the TV or over the radio, and Libicki and the other soldiers are warned about traveling around Israel in uniform, but I found it interesting that Libicki focuses more on dealing with the guy who ignores her except for fooling around.

I found that this comic was really useful at getting an idea as to what the IDF is like. Too often they're thought of as some monolithic organization, but "Jobnik!" shows IDF soldiers as a bunch of kids giving each other crap while waiting for their service to be up. It's a remarkably human portrayal.

I thought Miriam Libicki herself was really interesting. She lays herself bare for her audience, showing all of her doubts and foibles with an impressive lack of self-consciousness. I really liked her honesty and self-reflection, and I wanted to read more comics about her life.

Aside from some typographical errors (occasionally the same letter will be repeated for some odd reason) the comic looks pretty good, although the fact that it seems to have been done entirely in pencils might make it look a bit strange to comic readers used to seeing comics done in inks. All in all, if you're at all interested in Israel or the IDF, this is definitely worth tracking down in order to read.

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