Monday, May 23, 2011

Daytripper - Review

Life As You Like It

Brás de Oliva Domingos is an obituary writer living in South America and spends his days writing about the deaths of people who have lived extraordinary lives. He finds himself on a journey, exploring all of the possible deaths he could have had at all of the most pivotal times in his life. What he's looking for is an ending. An ending for himself. The content for his own obituary when the time comes. What he finds is that death isn't about dying, it's about living up to that moment.

Originally published by VERTIGO in ten separate issues, Daytripper is a journey through one man's many lives, over many years, and the many ways that it could have ended. The comic was written and drawn by twin brothers Fabio Moon and Gabriel Bà, who are well known for their strange slice of life stories. The atmosphere in the graphic novel feels more like a well directed film than a comic book, but that isn't a bad thing at all. The pacing and the writing sucks you into the realistic atmosphere, while the strange and fantasy elements bring you deeper into the life of Domingos' friends, family, and he himself.

I was awestruck at the end of the graphic novel, and even felt my eyes well up a bit. It does deal with death by the boatloads, but it also reflects on the moments in life we take for granted at all stages through childhood to adulthood. First loves, first tragedies, and life-altering realizations all soak out through the panels and into the reader. It's the perfect example of how this genre was born to be displayed on pages and not just on silver screens.

VERTIGO has yet to disappoint me with a title, and I'm willing to keep taking that challenge until it does. As for twins Moon and Bà, I can't wait to see what they cook up next.

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