Monday, November 08, 2010

Book-A-Day 2010 # 278 (11/8) -- Mister I by Lewis Trondheim

Hey, remember what I said about Lewis Trondheim's other book of pantomime comics, Mister O? (Please tell me you do -- it was only back in Book-A-Day # 201.)

Well, Mister I is very much the same kind of thing -- the same layout, the same repetition of initial premises through various permutations, the same horrible ends for the main character. But Mister I is a tall guy who wants food -- we presume that he's hungry, though he's most often trying to steal an apple pie from a windowsill, which speaks of mischief and desire rather than hunger. Mister I is just as successful in his endeavors as Mister O was -- which is to say, not at all. He's eaten by what's probably a dog, shot, gored by a bull, beaten to death, drowned, and crushed by any number of objects. (It's not a happy life for a pantomime character in Lewis Trondheim comics.)

And, again, these are wonderful comics, the equivalent of a great Chuck Jones Roadrunner cartoon on the page. The figures are stylized to make them everymen (or everybirds, or everbulls), which also keeps the violence -- and there is a lot of violence, just like those old cartoons -- funny rather than appalling. Mayhem and attempted pie-stealing have rarely been this funny.

Book-A-Day 2010: The Epic Index

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