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David Boring (by Daniel Clowes)

Today I read a graphic novel called David Boring by Daniel Clowes (who also wrote and drew the fairly well-known cult novel Ghost World). So I thought I would write out some of my reactions to David Boring, because it's very odd, very strange, quite dark, undeniably bizarre, and full of improbable "off-screen" violence.

It's the tale of a young man who really just wants to love a nice, fat-butted woman, but things keep going wrong on his quest for happiness. Various murders. A bullet in the head. Germ warfare. Police immorality. Adultery. Incest. Women who don't want their fat butts touched. Terrorists. A mysteriously absent cartoonist father. A mysteriously absent fat-butted girlfriend. A mother who must be avoided at all costs. A homicidal maniac of a cousin-in-law. A professorial stalker.

The whole thing is frequently disjointed and dream-like. The story is ... uh ... interesting ... I guess. But it's not really my cup of tea. I would rather read Alex Robinson's Box Office Poison for the same basic type of subject matter ... in a more Kimberly-friendly format. When it comes to narrative structures, I'm quite a fan of the bizarre. But when it comes to the actual plot, I prefer something that actually makes sense in the world in which I live. But that's just me.

So, in short, I was entertained by this graphic novel, but I don't particularly like it. If Shannon has no objection, I'll probably sell it to one of the nearby used bookstores.


And now, finished with my book, I relax in my office, serenaded by the repeated disbelieving college-boy strains of "Oh my god! Oh my god, dude! Oh my god! Oh my god, dude!" emanating from the neighboring apartment. Quite the vocabulary this kid's got.

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( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
webmacher
Aug. 9th, 2003 05:55 pm (UTC)
ooh! ooh!
May I borrow it before you sell it?

I've been reading several graphic novels myself... Berlin, City of Stones and Jar of Fools, both by Jason Lutes — the former is the first part of a planned trilogy about Berlin between the World Wars and it's just fascinating; the latter is about a magician down on his luck and reminded me of something Paul Auster would have done, had he written comic books instead of straight prose. Then there's Persopolis, by Marjean Satrappi, who's about our age, and grew up in Iran up until the 1979 revolution... quite a story. And Clumsy by Jeff something, which is really crudely drawn but a sweet/funny/sad story about him and his girlfriend. I'm waiting eagerly to see what else these guys all come up with.

What the hell are your neighbors doing, anyway? There are several possible interpretations... guess which one popped into my mind first! ;-)
kimberly_a
Aug. 9th, 2003 07:13 pm (UTC)
Re: ooh! ooh!
Then there's Persopolis, by Marjean Satrappi, who's about our age, and grew up in Iran up until the 1979 revolution... quite a story.

I think I saw this one at the comic book stores a couple weeks ago, because the owner (Rory) handed it to me as something he thought I might want to read.

As for the neighbors, I have no idea what they were doing. Probably not what you're thinking. ;)
abostick59
Aug. 10th, 2003 07:27 pm (UTC)
Persepolis
Persepolis is bloody brilliant. I haven't had a chance to read it all the way through, but I did get to read the beginning. The Women's Review of Books asked Deb to review it; then she started loaning her review copy out right and left. I'll read it when it comes home again.
palmir
Aug. 9th, 2003 08:06 pm (UTC)
Re: ooh! ooh!
What the hell are your neighbors doing, anyway? There are several possible interpretations... guess which one popped into my mind first! ;-)

Probabl the same thing that popped into mine.
shannon_a
Aug. 9th, 2003 08:55 pm (UTC)
Re: ooh! ooh!
Loved Berlin and eagerly awaiting more volumes.

You're of course quite welcome to borrow the Boring book. It was one of my less successful GN purchases, so I'm quite happy to spread the misery around.

andrewducker
Aug. 10th, 2003 03:14 am (UTC)
I loooove Box Office Poison. I haven't read anything else that he's written tho.
kimberly_a
Aug. 10th, 2003 10:25 am (UTC)
Same here, on both counts.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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