Monday, March 2, 2015

Happy Will Eisner Week, Day 2: Get Over It!

Day 2 of Will Eisner Week has me reading a graphic novel from a creator whose works in mini-comics are among my favorites.
I am a big fan of Corinne Mucha's publications, and I have featured her first graphic novel Freshman on this very blog. Her second one, Get Over It, is aimed at a more adult audience. It is about dealing with the fallout of a break-up, and it is at once bittersweet and entertaining. Part of what makes it work as well as it does is Mucha's sense of humor and her unique way of depicting the jumble of emotions and behaviors that follow. For instance, parts of the narrative turn into small vignettes or quizzes that highlight some pretty horrible moments.
And the proceedings are further highlighted in a series of dialogues between body parts that dramatize many of the feelings but also are pretty ridiculous and hilarious in their literalness. I know that much of the subject matter in this book could be seen as hackneyed or cliched, but I felt that the artistic execution, insight, and comedic timing elevated the enterprise into something special. Case in point:

All of the reviews I have read about this book have been positive. Megan Kirby commented, "Mucha’s constant use of wordplay, gags, visual metaphors, and childlike flights of fancy give her a self-aware edge." Tim O'Neil summed up that she "managed to turn her pain into something heartfelt and compelling, which is no small feat." Zainab Akhtar called her a "well-kept secret" and wrote that "Mucha maintains the auto-biographical sweet-spot, maintaining a balance between the personal and involved, without descending into narcissism, whilst hilariously dredging through the universal impulses and emotions of the post break-up period."

Get Over It was published by Secret Acres, and they provide a preview and more info here.

Because I love Mucha's work so much, I also bought and read this mini-comic, The Girl Who Was Mostly Attracted to Ghosts. It is also focused on relationships, in particular on a woman with a peculiar love-life problem: she apparently only wants to date unavailable guys. Mucha takes things one step further and just turns them into phantoms.
Certainly, there is a lot of metaphor going on here, but I love the playful way that the narrative is fast and loose about shifting from fiction to reality and back. This comic is not just a one note comedy, but a human story that is deeper than it would seem at first glance. I really admire how Mucha can make me alternatively laugh, think, and feel with her works. The illusion of simplicity in her work relies much on craft and forethought. Personally, I am very into her works. If you would like to learn more about her, Mucha speaks extensively about her works and comics career in this interview.

The Girl Who Was Mostly Attracted to Ghosts was also published by Secret Acres, but it is now out of print.

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