Thursday, February 17, 2011
These Things Happen Vol. 4
By Sam Carbaugh
The first story in this comic is about being on a long distance bus journey. Not exactly the most thrilling of events, but then Charles Bukowski appears and starts berating Carbaugh to stop being so romantic and pathetic about the concepts of beauty and art.
I'm not really that knowledgable of Bukowski, but this version asks Carbaugh "Why should other people give a shit?" about his work, and sometimes that's a good question to ask. Why are you creating something? Though creating solely for arts sake is fine, perhaps the better question is if you are putting something out into the world, why should anyone pay attention to it?
Bukowski then continues to rip into some well known poets and says that you need to be attacked and hurt by life before you can be a proper poet. Guess it's a good thing I don't want to be a poet.
(Speaking of Bukowski, and of me not really getting poetry unless I hear it read, here's a killer track by DOOM that features an extensive sample of Bukowski reading one of his poems. I'm sure the background music helps, but still: solid.)
The comic then takes a rather odd turn as it flashes forward several years and shows Carbaugh reading an old journal and contemplating over how he's changed in the last few years. This part is straight up journal comics, and is less interesting to me. Two people talking about a phone conversation one of them had isn't going to thrill me unless I happen to know one of the people involved (and even then maybe not...).
The other two comics in here are a somewhat meta one about a strange character getting their arm stuck on the wrong side of a panel border. It's a good idea, but I found some of the stylistic choices kind of strange. The final piece is about how being the same as everyone else isn't that awesome or something. I'm bad at explaining the plot of this, but it's not exactly a new idea.
I like Carbaugh's art, though really I'm a sucker for zippatoned backgrounds and textures. For the more cartoony stuff he has a pretty good grasp of character design, and I like the weird skull-headed bird that appears.