Saturday, February 12, 2011

Unbeknownst! Chapter One

By Bernadette Bentley

This zine came in a bag with a free badge/button and a bonus minizine! Woo! And then the minizine had a url for exclusive downloadable online content! (ie. a song). Neato, I would totally do that if I had any musical talent.

The bigger zine is a comic book that starts off fairly confusingly, with several pages of mixed up text and perhaps it's supposed to represent a dream of some sort. It doesn't seem to have much of a connection to the rest of the comic, except for perhaps a themeatic connection around the concept of being lost.

Once the actual comic kicks in it actually gets kind of interesting. It's an autobio comic about being broke and poor, yet an on the verge of becoming a successful artist. Yeah, there's a lot of those, and most of them are frequently about being poor and depressed, and yet it's sort of nice to read these things when you yourself are poor and depressed. It's seeing that you are not alone in your life, and that other people have been where you are and gone on to other things.

Being treated poorly because you are trying to follow your dreams, or even because you are just trying to make a living isn't very nice, but it happens all the time. The experiences Bently recounts here remind me of Hard Work by Polly Toynbee, a fairly interesting book about working in the shittiest low paying jobs around. Woo!

And then there's a bit about self identity and a recurring dream. The whole thing seems very much like the first chapter of a longer work, and I'm hoping that there's a plan and that Bently knows where the comic is going.

The minizine is filled with artwork and poetry. The exclusive download is a musical version of one of the poems, it's not really my sort of thing (accoustic guitar-y thing), but it seems pretty good and I think it works a lot better as a song than as a poem!

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