Friday, April 30, 2010

comics o' th' decade. episode: li'l pico de gallo

Ever wonder how adolescence could have been more awkward an alienating? How about if you grew a mouth in your chest or a tail? Or what if your skin molted?

Black Hole (Charles Burns)

As unsettling as your own experience with puberty may have been, your dark teenage heart could only hope to match the blackness depicted in this series. Burns makes the worst fears of high school real, replacing acne with truly grotesque deformation, estrangement with actual banishment. Sex and the deepest anxieties about its dangers—desease, social rejection—are everywhere in this book. Yonic imagery is inescapable.

All this unease is illustrated magnificently by Burns's deep and foreboding blacks. This book is creepy for sure, but it also cuts into the innermost circle of our neuroses and shows how universal they are. And there's comfort in knowing you weren't or aren't alone.

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