Friday, January 19, 2007

Graphic Novel: Loveless

by Brian Azzarello and Marcelo Frusin (2006).

A dangerously fun and filmic read. This was probably the first time I've read a graphic novel or comic book and really picked up on the visual tricks and transitions. Part of it had to do with confusion--many characters look similar enough to make it difficult to keep track. But I'm glad I had to pay such close attention; the art has a quality I can only describe as badass.

Azzarello throws a bunch of plots into the air and then proceeds to juggle them fairly well. There really is a lot going on here, considering. The present for Wes and Ruth; the past as they remember it, both together and apart; the present for the townspeople, Danny Boyd, the Feds, the newly-freed black people, Atticus. I have no clue where any of it will go, and it's a little frustrating to end a trade with so many loose ends, but I'm on board with Wes and Ruth. I'll come back to the story for the two of them.

I do have a complaint about the writing and art, but I wonder if it's too early in the story for me to make this judgement. All the black characters seem dangerously exaggerated--thick lips, slack mouths, bugged-out eyes--and none of them have come across in a particularly favorable light. I'm not exactly crying racism--and the book is, after all, from the perspective of a white Southerner who fought in the war--but I find it a little unsettling.

No comments: