Hi.

Welcome to my blog. I write reviews of indie comics and graphic novels.

Big Pussy

Big Pussy

It’s bright and bold and crass and just slightly surreal, and I love it. It’s like the kind of dreams I have that I don’t tell anyone about. It’s a (figurative) memory I have of myself at that age that I haven’t told anyone about. It’s a cultural memory of a certain demographic and a representation of the current lifestyles of that same demographic, redux ten years later. It’s a zine that demographic has on its dresser, or piled onto a bookshelf with twenty other zines of various sizes. It’s a foreshadowing of things to come.

At twenty-two pages, it’s nearly impossible not to read in one sitting, but you will miss out if you only spend five minutes on that sitting, because you will be taken on a twenty-year journey and faced with the consequences of the decisions that we make while young. That’s too much to absorb in five minutes.

 First impressions: the bright pink assaults. Don’t try to read this comic if you have a migraine. The colour choice makes sense though: like it or not, pink is associated with girls and young women, with femininity, and, in such a bright tone, with a punk aesthetic. The colour assault is about as rebellious as the protagonist (who happens to be named Gina), which is to say, succeeding somewhat, but not like a Ramone.

 Let’s meet the protagonist. We learn that she’s about to turn twenty-four and does not yet feel that she is an adult. Her actions seem to bear this out, if we’re going by the traditional definition of an adult as someone who has a job and her own place and who cooks and cleans and behaves like she is supposed to—and who even has a list of these types of things that she (maybe?) wants to accomplish. But Gina sleeps in, farts around on the internet, and looks at porn—which, to be fair, is what most of do even if we do have jobs; it’s just that our self-pleasing time is limited to the hours between work. I also believe (and I know this is true for me) that most of us, deep down, want to rebel against this system that prevents us from acting out our desires whenever we want, whether that’s to eat pizza all the time or smoke weed and nap or watch cartoons or even work at a job that we’re passionate about, rather than one that pays the bills.

 For this reason, I am tempted to be jealous of Gina. But the temptation ends before the jealousy becomes reality. Gina’s sobbing cries of “I am stuck in a permanent adolescence; so weak; so hopeless” ring too true and her desire to transform—inspired by Sailor Moon’s Yumi—is one that I also have right now, though it’s inspired by other things (like indie zines and online dating). I plan on taking quite a while to effect my transformation, however, while our protagonist Gina hatches a plan to toughen up and become ready for adulthood by her 24th birthday, which is taking place in a few days. So she seeks out her Nebula, but instead finds a gang of cats who take advantage of her in all the ways that young women are often taken advantage of, all in the name of making her tougher.

 Rather than celebrating her transformation into a tough adult by completing some of the things on her list, she goes on a petty and not-so-petty crime spree with her cat buddies. Be careful who you choose for a mentor. She is tempted back to her old life, however, with promises of ice cream cake (who wouldn’t be tempted by that?) and racy magazines. Her toughness dissipates as she cries when she leaves the feral-cat life for good.

But there are consequences to all of our actions, and Wynbrandt doesn’t shy away from depicting them. This would be a morality tale if the protagonist had learned anything by the end, but she hasn’t; we’re forced to admire her for being true to herself and defying the cultural pressure to change—the cult of self-improvement—even if we don’t actually like her. But I do. And I smile every time I read this comic.

Writer/Artist: Gina Wynbrandt

Publisher: 2dcloud

Mathematical Solutions for a Global Crisis

Mathematical Solutions for a Global Crisis

Some stuff about my blog

Some stuff about my blog