Posts Tagged ‘graphic novel’

If it is true that “to err is human,” then “Shortcomings” by Adrian Tomine is one of the most human graphic novels that I have encountered in a good long while.

Populated by a cast of delightfully flawed characters, “Shortcomings” explores just that–the ways in which we fall short. Ben Tanaka is insecure, angry, depressed and lonely, which causes him to drive away the women who would try to love him. Struggling with internalized (as well as external) racism, Ben flounders in his romantic relationships and questionable preference for white women.

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Skim by Mariko and Jillian Tamaki

Those who know me best know that I love teen melodramas. Whether it be Skins, Degrassi, or the first season and a half of Gossip Girl, if it’s got teens, hi-jinx, and the drama is ratcheted up to 11, I’m happy. Even when it comes to comics, my favorites have been heavy on teen characters, I mean that’s the only reason anyone could call Generation X, with the rather large exception of Love and Rockets, their favorite comic series of all time. Anyway, to get to my point, Mariko and Jillian Tamaki’s Skim, is a comic about teenagers being teenagers, and guess what? I love it. La-la-love it.

Skim focuses on Kimberly Keiko Cameron, a.k.a. Skim, a kinda chubby, kinda weird, kinda wants to be oh-so-deep girl as she deals with being an outsider at an all girls prep school in early ’90s Canada. There’s nothing about the Tamakis (they’re cousins, in case you were wondering) book that is particularly new, but the skill at which the two bring the work to life is astonishing. (more…)