I don't know what took me so long, but I finally
got around to reading Bryan Lee O'Malley's inspired, hilarious, snarky, delicious graphic novel series Scott Pilgrim
(though I know how I got around to reading them finally: I ran into Scott McCloud at the Toronto Comic Arts Fest and he said, "You have to read 'Scott Pilgrim,' it's about a guy who can only date the love of his life after he defeats her seven evil ex-boyfriends!").
I sent away for a review set of the first five volumes -- I'm not sure, but I think there'll be six in all -- but they were promptly stolen by my wife, who wouldn't give them back, so I had to buy another set at Forbidden Planet in London and then drop pretty much everything to read them, at speed, howling with laughter and turning down corners on pages I wanted to save for posterity.
The premise is pretty much as McCloud described it: Scott Pilgrim is a 23-year-old Toronto slacker who falls in love with an Amazon delivery woman who's just moved from America, but in order to date her, he must defeat her seven evil ex-boyfriends, who have a variety of super powers (my favorite is the vegan, who has the vegan power of moving things with his mind). On the way, we find out about Scott's friends -- slackers, successes, screw-ups, beauty queens, lovelorn ninjas, a whole charming host of them -- and his history and run through a series of genuinely touching, ha-ha-only-serious flashbacks about Scott's life.
The setting is crack for me, since it's the Toronto of my young adulthood -- they have one epic battle at Casa Loma, the weird castle where I got married; they spend their nights drinking bad beer and eating terrible food at Sneaky Dees, where I practically lived for several years, especially when they were a 24-hour joint on Bloor Street; and there's a brilliant fight-scene at the magnificently kitschy monster five-and-dime Honest Eds -- rendered with sweet affection and a good eye.
But the best part are the little tossed-up popcult fillips, like the 8-bit "PEE" status-bar that slowly scrolls to empty over a couple panels as Scott stands at a urinal, or the One-Up face that pings into existence when Scott earns an extra life.
Reading this reminds me of the first time I read Generation X and discovered a creator who was funny, touching, smart and plugged into many of the same things that my life revolved around. The Globe and Mail called it "Canada's Tank Girl," and I think that's as good a strapline as any. I can't recommend it highly enough -- and hey, there's a pretty decent-looking film-adaptation in the works, too!
Scott Pilgrim, Vol. 1: Scott Pilgrim's Precious Little Life
Scott Pilgrim, Vol. 2: Scott Pilgrim Versus The World
Scott Pilgrim, Vol. 3: Scott Pilgrim & the Infinite Sadness
Scott Pilgrim, Vol 4: Scott Pilgrim Gets It Together
Scott Pilgrim Volume 5: Scott Pilgrim vs The Universe
Scott Pilgrim - Comics By Bryan Lee O'Malley
Fancy a regular cut of the best things at Boing Boing—and perhaps a thing or two you won’t read online? Our newsletter goes out weekly and we use only the finest mechanically-separated pixels in its production.
I’m about to switch off my email until September 5 and drive to Black Rock City for 10 days of incinerating the dude.
As Oracle desperately tries to reanimate its wretched, failed attempt to destroy everything Sun Microsystems stood for and end computer science as we know it, there’s never been a better time to rock one of these “You Wouldn’t Reimplement an API” tees, which were an underground hit during the earlier trial.
Finding quality icons is a challenge for designers, and can also get pretty costly if you use them often. And when you’ve got a lot to do, the last thing you want to spend your time on is creating new icons from scratch That’s why we recommend using the Noun Project ($49). Noun Project is a site […]
While Netflix and Hulu have seemingly dominated the streaming market with their limited selections, we’ve looked a little outside the box and found something pretty great as an alternative. SelectTV combines all the content of cable with the convenience of streaming, and it’s affordable too.SelectTV is an online subscription service that packs an impressive library of over […]
These days, the vape market is saturated with low-quality products, making it nearly impossible to separate the gems from the duds. The Atmos Rx Dry Herb Vaporizer stands out from crowd for two reasons: its impressive battery life and durable construction. This high-end little gadget is compact enough to fit in your pocket, and packs a powerful punch, […]