Monday, November 08, 2010

My favorite vampire!

No, really. While I'm not much of a vampire-lover, I do still have a favorite, it is Meth, as produced by my good friend Shawnti Therrien. Yeah, yeah, I totally know what you are going to say, that of course I'm going to like all of the comics produced by all of my friends. Not really.

Besides, not all of my comicbook-producing friends are a talented (and prolific) as Shawnti. Her character, Meth, is a wholly different kind of vampire who is, well, uncomfortable with his immortality.

Not only are Shawnti’s stories haunting and lyrical, but they break the boundaries of we (oh so jaded) readers have come to expect from “standard” comics (well, at least this reader) are used to seeing. This, wonderfully-rendered, tome collects the many already-published stories concerning Meth, combine them with new material, and re-present it here is a package that is enticing and disturbing all at the same time.

Shawnti had delivered a beautiful, 76-page graphic novel-in-the-making combining moody, B&W and color sequential art, prose (rendered as both traditional storytelling and hand-written missives) to move this eternal tale of suffering and regret forward, crafting it into something more than “just another” vampire tale.

No, kids, these creatures of the night don't simply bite you on the neck ans suck down your blood. Nope, they (if you pardon the reference) live and breath. They are more than just fearsome, iconic creatures to scare us in the dark, but lenses through which we can examine our own lives and motivations.

It is clear that Shawnti has a clear vision of her characters, and not only knows from whence they came, but towards they are going as well. As the story unfolds, you see that she isn’t so much directing the action, but revealing what choreographed events as they take place.

These are real people, to Shawnti, and as you read her story, they will become real to you as well. check out Meth, The Collection available from Immortal Gothic (via Indie Planet), you’ll be eternally pleased with yourself that you took my advice.As stated, the collection combines new material with previously-published work that has appeared in Psychosis! Today (Atlas Unleashed), Psychosis!, CAG) and elsewhere. Finding it all together in this outstanding work for $14.50, is a terrific find.

For the record, I do have one (minor) gripe with this book, and it is solely a “novice” production issue. The primary difference between saddle-stitched (standard) and square-bound (like this) comics, is that square-bound books don’t lay flat, and regular comics do. Hence, when laying out the pages, it is important to leave an extra quarter inch or so on the interior margin, otherwise the text and art will get lost in the center fold. Needless to say, having never produced a square-bound book before, Shawnti didn’t know this, and  thus on a couple of pages it is sort of annoying to read the story. Still, now that she has produced a square-bound book, it is a safe bet that she will never make this mistake again.

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