Very few comics published in 2016 delivered true comedy, and the books that did steal the show — Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, Jughead, Hawkeye, and Howard the Duck number among them. Image’s funniest comic of the year, however, was a punchy and hilariously dark buddy-cop story gone wrong. The Fix, from Nick Spencer and Steve Lieber (The Superior Foes of Spider-Man), follows the exploits of two dirty cops, both of whom are helpless in the eyes of their new partner, a drug-sniffing beagle named Pretzels.

What makes Pretzels a great superhero is what marks The Fix as one of 2016’s superior comic books: Both feel rooted in classic tropes, though Pretzels is a spin on the raging police dog the same way The Fix isn’t quite as simple as it seems. Also, they’re both truly funny.

Pretzels, in a hallucination, urges one of the villains in the story to get up.

What’s so new about a dog comic, and what makes Pretzels a superhero? Well, for starters, Pretzels really, really hates crime, which makes it all the more ironic that he’s partnered up with a chaotic, good cop who hurts innocent people regularly. He’s got an unnatural way of determining whether cops are trying to use him to achieve dastardly deeds, and he only calms down when he deems a situation as being on the up and up.

After Pretzels and his buddies bust a guy for smuggling drugs in his fake testicle, though, the team is set to kick criminal ass in upcoming issues.

The Fix plays admirably with its readers’ expectations, teasing Pretzels in the first few panels, but waiting until the series’ tense plot has ramped up to an almost unbearable level before tossing Pretzels into the fray. The result is a compulsively readable, laugh out loud comic.

The Fix Vol. 1 is available in trade paperback now, and Issue #7 will be available January 4, 2017.

Photos via Image Comics