Broxo: a spooky, fast-moving adventure not to be missed
Zack Giallongo's Broxo is compared to Shadow of the Colossus, Bone, and Elfquest. For sure, if you put those into the shaker, and pour the mix over dry ice harvested from a spooky Celtic backwater, you'd get something much like this excellent graphic novel. But Giallongo's debut is no imitation. It's a a tight, gorgeously-illustrated journey of its own, a story of zombie-chopping action, homesickness and deeply-felt loss.
On a bleak and blasted mountain plateau, barbarian princess Zora searches for a distant clan thought to reside there. Why she searches, so far from her own family, is her own business. But all she finds is Broxo, living alone in the desolation, the last survivor. A friendly but feral teenager, Broxo rides a huge furry beast, eats baked lizards for dinner, and cuts a sharp path through the region's infestation of the walking dead.
The mountain has other, even more dangerous inhabitants, including Gloth, a vicious talking wolf, and Ulith, a sinister witch. Zora's arrival upsets Peryton Peak's uneasy peace, but an unexpected ally puts them on the right track. Broxo's unsocialized naiveté--and her quest--are both doomed from the outset. By the end, though, they find what they were looking for.
Giallongo draws with a loose hand, and the palette is tightly controlled. The result perfectly contrasts the mountain's desolate, subdued landscape against the youthful, bickering exuberance of its explorers. Broxo is driven by instinct and savvy, Zora by reason and fear, but they work well together and know how to handle danger.
The story moves brusquely. Giallongo is decisive, too, ready to invest page after page into quiet scene-setting or tension, yet unafraid to blast through developments at a breakneck pace when they come. Sometimes, I felt this economy tended toward the abrupt, demanding too much of a panel, a facial expression, or a moment of action or grief. I wanted it to linger more, to head a little deeper. This spareness is hard to fault, given all the bloated, soapy fantasy out these, but this book would have borne extra weight well.
Its G-ratedness keeps the monomythic waters a little too clear, too. The draugr-dicing gets repetitive, after a while, and hints of dark, fairy-tale sexuality--consider Ulith's femininity, her tragic interest in Broxo--are sanded Saturday-morning smooth.
A third longer, and I would have found it harder to evict Zora and Broxo from my mind. But the story is so sweet and so sad, and the art so perfect, that I want them back, ASAP, to show me more of Penthos.
Wranglerstar found the cheapest survival toolkit on Amazon, then took it into the wilds of the Pacific Northwest. There’s a shovel, a saw, a magnetic LED flashlight with a tactical hitty thing and a USB outlet for charging gadgets, a pocket chainsaw, and a bag— all for $30. It’s not awful, but the price didn’t […]
Emil Ferris’s graphic novel debut My Favorite Thing is Monsters may just be the best graphic novel of 2017, and is certainly the best debut I’ve read in the genre, and it virtually defies summarizing: Karen is a young girl in a rough Chicago neighborhood is obsessed with monsters and synthesia, is outcast among her friends, is queer, is torn apart by the assassination of Martin Luther King, by her mother’s terminal illness, by the murder of the upstairs neighbor, a beautiful and broken Holocaust survivor, by her love for her Vietnam-draft-eligible brother and her love of fine art.
In 1956, Hugh Hefner gave MAD's founding editor an unlimited budget for a new satire magazine called "TRUMP"
Harvey Kurtzman is a hero of satire, the guy who convinced Bill Gaines’s mother to bankroll a comic book called MAD, then doubled down by turning MAD into a magazine — only to jump ship five issues later after a bizarre fight with the Gaineses, finding refuge with Playboy founder Hugh Hefner who gave him […]
Despite the upfront cost, electric toothbrushes are much better at removing plaque than those freebies from the dentist’s office. For those who struggle to fill the American Dental Association’s recommended two minutes of brushing time, or anyone with limited dexterity, a sonic toothbrush can give your oral care routine a boost.To keep your chops healthy […]
Learning a new language will give your resume an upgrade, sure, but it will also provide a huge cognitive boost for mental tasks outside of translation and conversation. Bilingual brains have been shown to be better at handling multiple concurrent tasks, and gaining fluency in a new tongue is an amazing way to improve memory, […]
If you struggle to get a good night’s rest, consider replacing your pillows before dropping hundreds on a new mattress. You can give your tired neck a break with a 2-pack of memory foam pillows, available now in the Boing Boing Store.Each of these pillows is stuffed with cooling polyurethane foam that molds to your […]