Thursday, August 25, 2011

Ganges #1

Kevin Huizenga
Ganges #1

Fantagraphics/Coconino, 2006

Glenn Ganges - the protagonist of the first volume of the series «Ganges» - is a dreamer, an eccentric, a loving husband, but first and foremost a restless man. Meaningless details do not give rest to him, he makes a mountain out of a molehill, and his fantasies replace the reality. Five stories under one cover are the five pieces of a day in the life of Ganges. These fragments were not worth any attention to, if their hero was someone else, not Glenn Ganges. Ganges goes to the library. Ganges returns home. Ganges sits next to his wife while she works at the computer. Ganges goes to sleep. Ganges is asleep.

But Huizenga splash with something each of these individual stories (although the book is done in only three colors: black, white and shades of green). On the way to the library Ganges moves in time. Then he sees the cyclist, throwing trash on the road, and moves ahead in the future of the cyclist. Then he argues with his wife because of the song. Then he goes to bed and thinks what love is. Ganges himself steps into the background, replacing himself by his own imagination. And all those themes and issues that Ganges raises in conversations with his wife or, more commonly, with himself, how serious they wouldn’t be, you can’t take them seriously. Last, night, part of the book, when Ganges and his wife go to sleep, is the most sophisticated in terms of art. There is no division between the panels, Ganges’ ideas are moving and moving, not letting him fall asleep, and the darkness are enveloping here, but not sleepy.

I’d like to meet this Ganges.

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