Sunday, December 12, 2010

Acme Novelty Library #20

Written and Drawn and Everything'd by Chris Ware

There's almost no point in reviewing some books. Every month we have the same conversation about some titles, some authors. It goes something like:

Counter Boy #1: (monotone, eyelids half closed) Hey, dude. Did you read the new Sweet Tooth?

Counter Boy #2: (yawning, shoulders drooped) Yeah, it was amazing. Like usual. Who gives a shit.

Counter Boy #1: I agree. It pretty much changed my life. What a fucking shocker.

This probably is a troubling indicator of how jaded and broken we are as human beings, but it does raise a valid(ish) point. Some creators are so good, some titles are so consistently fantastic, that reviewing them either casually or via blog is almost a redundant, needless exercise.

Chris Ware is ABSOLUTELY one of those creators. A new Acme Novelty Library is an Event for me and my peers. So, all that being said, here are my bullet point, redundant, needless-yet-still-true thoughts on the new piece of brilliance from Chris Ware, in no particular order:
  • Anyone who reads Chris Ware should contact three friends before hand to let them know. They should check on you periodically for the next week to fifteen days to make sure you're okay.
  • Amazing. Best yet? Maybe maybe maybe.
  • Main character not a sad sack, pathetic loser: he's a blow hard pathetic loser. What a difference! Seriously!
  • Panels are UNBELIEVABLY well done. Even for Chris Ware. Expresses birth and coming to consciousness as a human in a way that could only be done in a comic book. Shit.
  • This is part of a larger work. When can I read the whole thing? From start to finish? WHEN?!?
  • The binding and printing of this book is gorgeous. BUT, it's been pointed out to me: you can't roll a joint on this book. Cloth inlay.
  • This is a comic book!
  • I didn't cry. I swear I didn't cry. I didn't.
Sixteen out of Sixteen painful moments of self-realization while reading Acme Novelty Library #20.

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