Sunday, March 28, 2010
Wimbledon Green by Seth
(Drawn and Qauterly)
Cartoonist Seth at the beginning of the book reveals itself: the book was written for fun, “the drawing is poor, the lettering shoddy, the page compositions and storytelling perfunctory”, and indeed the novel as a novel was not intended, and was only as set of sketchbooks. The author is cunning. In fact, the poor drawing and the shoddy lettering guess stylized 40-50s comics, and the abruptness plot resembles a good documentary movie - about the fact that madness is always possible, but to catch the madness and understand it is not so simple.
Wimbledon Green, as it is written on the cover, is the greatest comic book collector in the world. Reader will trace the way during which Green had become a collector, and at first watching for those Green years being funny young fat Green, then a daily routine of his life already in the status of the great collector. It's a mystery according to the laws of half a century ago pulp comics, in which one key element is disclosed on the first page: Green disappeared somewhere along with his huge collection, and no one knows what happened to him. Despite the seemingly partial loss of detective intrigue, you do follow the adventures of Fat Green, while still can enjoy reading.
Throughout the book, Green will be chasing the rare comic books, accompanied by his assistants, women in sunglasses and an enigmatic Hindu, and parallel to this not the last people in comics fandom will tell you what they have heard about the great collector, under any circumstances have met with him, and suppose he still lost. Such sketch inserts (one person - one page) perfectly play the role of fragments from the documentary, which could shoot about the disappearance of Green.
Special mention deserves one of the rare comic included in the collection of Wimbledon. "Fine and Dandy" is the story of two funny hoboes, thick and thin, whose sole mission in the life was to be free. And to be free for them means to be homeless. If you read the whole book with a smile on his face, then this sketch really make you laughing out loud.
It is not necessary, however, to think that the whole book is a story about the chase, written for fun and laughter (and laughter and fun are really there). "Wimbledon Green" is also about that everything changes (and need to change), everything goes, but something subtle is always with you. This subtle thing, perhaps, makes any person a little crazy. It is important to switch to the coin at the right time.