Tuesday, April 2, 2013

diary of a guttersnipe 04/02/2013: scarface on repeat

by Shawn Starr

It was an intresting Spring Break to say the least....

Skim (Groundwood Books)
by Mariko Tamaki , Jillian Tamaki

If you stripped "The Craft" of all that Hollywood “wiccan” bullshit and had it just be a nuanced movie about a confused kid trying to figure out her identity while attending high school, dealing with suicide, body perception, sexuality, drugs, etc. then you would get 'Skim'. Which makes it nothing like "The Craft", but it’s easier to write a review if you say “It’s like this, but not at all” and then just talk about how you saw random fragments of "The Craft" on USA (the network, not the country) throughout various summer vacations, but never actually saw the whole thing from start to finish until years later in college. Which is kind of like high school, where you don’t really understand what you were trying to be until later, which is what 'Skim' is attempting to convey. And, circle closed.

Emmanuelle #1 (Eurotica/NBM)
by Guido Crepax

Crepax draws everyone in this book with weirdly angular faces and frayed hair. I guess it was the 1980’s and people thought that looked good. Nice layouts nonetheless.


Talking About 'The End Of The Fucking World'

In it’s final issue Forsman delivers on the titles promise, the world fucking ended. Not in a tongue and cheek 'Asterios Polyp' way, or a zombie apocalypse, but through the destruction of James and Alyssa’s world together. James’s world literally ends while Alyssa’s is figuratively destroyed. This is an important distinction, and it shades what each character meant to each other, and the overall narrative.


In the end James, as much as he tried throughout his journey, could never truly change. He was a sociopath from the beginning, but with Alyssa's presence you could see a reserve in him, you could see him making a life of it. Similar to Derf’s analysis of Jeffery Dahmer in 'My Friend Dahmer', you can see James (along with Dahmer) struggling with their basic instincts. Dahmer numbs this feeling through alcohol, James chooses Alyssa; this is why James calls Alyssa his protector (“I was not her protector. She was mine.”). The absence of Alyssa in James life marks a constant struggle with what he is, her absence see’s James directing his aggression towards innocent targets, both human and animal.

With Alyssa he is able to control himself to an extent that he could never do on his own, that is, except when he feels like she, his protector, is threatened. This is why James can never overcome his psychopathy, his very being puts Alyssa in danger, which cases him to regress back to his null state. The cult, whose existence is left largely unexplained, is used to illustrate this point throughout James and Alyssa’s relationship. When they fall in love, in the home of a professor on vacation, James is almost able to expel his demons, until the cult seeps into the narrative and his violent tendencies are pulled back to the forefront of his relationship with Alyssa.

The cults involvement in the narrative following the events of issue seven mirror James and Alyssa’s relationship, the more pages they take up the further Alyssa pushes away. The cult brings out a side of James that she can’t control, and not until the cult leaves the narrative following James and Alyssa’s break up for three issues, do they reconcile and leave to meet Alyssa's estranged father, where, for one issue, they find happiness again.

In the penultimate issue, Alyssa’s father informs the police of her and James location, headed by a Cult member the police bear down on their location and demand James’s surrender. In this moment, James comes to a duel realization, he will never change, and he can only protect Alyssa by leaving her. He’s damaged. James tying up Alyssa (to her protest) is removing the last barrier of his humanity..


Next Week: Alyssa


Previews of 'The Passion of Gengoroh Tagame', featuring a book flap which solidifies my theory that every page of that book is going to be hardcore.

Der Hipster: Animation Olivier Schrauwen

Jog on 'Muse' is both one of the best straight up reviews i have read in a long time, but also one of the best discussions on “cheesecake” art and female sexualiation in comics that's been produced in a long time. Unlike the mixture of half thought out screeds and obvious trolling that most discussions on the form are inundated with, Jog takes a nuanced look at the genre of “Good Girl” comics, both it’s historical merits and shortcomings, and 'Muse'’s place in that spectrum.

Don’t call me the “W-Word”; that word is offensive to my privileged status.

Cover for 'Frontier' #1

Found a copy of 'Kramer's Ergot' #7 for 50% off and almost wet myself in excitement, if you ever come across that book just take a minute to flip through it

Johnny Negron T-Shirts and Prints

The DeForge Study Group T-Shirts came out quite nice.

Video preview of Dash Shaw’s 'New School'. I’m rereading 'Bodyworld' right now, that book is going to show up more and more in the greater “comics” conversation over the next few years as a major influence on long form webcomic narratives.

I don’t understand why anyone would spend three entire interview questions trying to get the next  writer/artist on a series  to spoil both the current run, and their (soon to be) run. Especially when you’re talking to Ales Kot. Why would you even want to know?

Passport came, should be at TCAF in May.

New Kevin Huizenga comic.

Short documentary about 3-D printers and their ability to print gun parts, which was interesting.

No comments:

Post a Comment