Archive for: Dave Mazzucchelli

Hooded Polyp: Earthy Anecdotes

In Caro’s recent post she argues that Asterios Polyp fails to deliver a kind of literary complexity. The result is the reiteration – on the level of performance if not assertion – of a hierarchical division between “the literary” and the “graphical”: a dichotomy that is aggressive and dismissive in precisely the same way as […]

continue reading »

 
 

Hooded Polyp: Parallax Review

Following links from Noah’s kickoff post through Matthias’ earlier essay on Asterios Polyp and on into the plethora of reviews gives a tour de force of puzzle-book annotation: Hellenistic references, astronomy, symmetry, architecture and fine art, the metaphorical/symbolic use of color and styles of linework, the yin-yang, and so forth. All of this clever, creative, […]

continue reading »

 
 

Talking Polyps

I thought we’d take a pause in the middle of our Asterios Polyp roundtable to highlight some of the points that have come up in comments. Craig Fischer had a fascinating comment on Mazzucchelli’s use of word balloons: You can see how appealing and effective Mazzucchelli’s word balloons are by comparing them to the balloons […]

continue reading »

 
 

Rocks fall, everybody dies: Asterios Polyp

This comic made me cranky.  I thoroughly enjoyed the art, which has a clean open feeling and lovely line work, and thought the story was sweet and rather sad, if a bit rote, and then…. I read the ending.  ‘Rocks fall, everybody dies’ is a phrase sometimes used in manga circles to describe a long […]

continue reading »

 
 

Hooded Polyp: Born Again Again

“How much more basic can you get? I made up a superhero and named him ‘Power.’”—David Mazzucchelli describing the cartoons he drew as a child, from his Comics Journal #194 interview (1997). How should we evaluate David Mazzucchelli’s career? His work tends to fall neatly into three chronological periods. The first is his superhero period […]

continue reading »

 
 

Hooded Polyp – Superficial Pleasures

I’ll get the obvious out of the way: Asterios Polyp is a trite, boring story with vapid characters. I more or less agreed with Noah’s assessment, so I won’t repeat what’s already been typed. And yet I was impressed by Mazzucchelli’s artistic skill, which Derik Badman discussed in some detail here. Because I’d rather not […]

continue reading »

 
 

Hooded Polyp: Rampant Formalism

I tend to be a careless reader on first reading a book. I’m distracted. I’m too interested in just getting through. I’m testing the waters too much: do I like this, will I like this? For this reason, I’m a big rereader. I try not to review anything on only one read. Better with two […]

continue reading »