Bechdel vs. Thompson

Cartoonists Craig Thompson (Blankets, the amazing Good-Bye, Chunky Rice) and Alison Bechdel (Fun Home, in my to-be-read stack) have a long, great, superb conversation over at Powells. As a bonus, it’s moderated by an informed Powells employee who doesn’t feel the need to condescend to comics, and who clearly took the time to read the cartoonists’ work carefully. If you have any interest in how cartooning is done, and how labor-intensive it is, please read this.

(Via Scott McCloud.)

About Walter Biggins

Walter Biggins is a writer based in Athens, GA. His work has been published in RogerEbert.com, Bookslut, The Comics Journal, Salon, The Baseball Chronicle, Jackson Free Press, and Valley Voices: A Literary Review. Follow him on Twitter (@walter_biggins), and check out his bimonthly newsletter (https://tinyletter.com/Walter_Biggins).
This entry was posted in Comics. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Bechdel vs. Thompson

  1. Wax Banks says:

    You’re spot-on about Rice – heartbreaking – but am I alone in thinking that Blankets is dull, sickly-sweet, and too long by a factor of 5? I think people talked so much about it because they were glad that graphic novels were finally diving headfirst into the cliched treatment of first love so beloved by young novelists. Thompson’s art is lovely of course, but after reading Blankets I got the sense that I’d gladly pitch him over the side of a sinking ship if I thought it would save the rest of the passengers.

  2. Walter says:

    I think you’re being too harsh, though it is indeed overlong and overripe. The first-love plot grated on my nerves after a while, but its treatment of family dynamics and its ability to look at fundamentalist Christianity without being patronizing or snide is quite good. In fact, it’s so rare to see autobio comics–or alternative comics in general–that deal with Christianity without resorting to mean-spiritedness and polarizing politics that Blankets was refreshing. Even though it basically ends with Thompson rejecting Christianity, it’s the rare comic that treats religion seriously instead of as a mere punching bag.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s