Jason - comic review (4 stars)


The Living and the Dead (Fantagraphics)


France-based Norwegian cartoonist Jason’s last graphic novella, The Left Bank Gang, was a witty, wacky crime caper featuring zoomorphic versions of modernist literature masters, canine Ezra Pound, James Joyce, etc. His new novella is an equally silly but smart riff on horror movies, in particular George A Romero’s Living Dead series. But it’s a love story, too, and one told in the style of silent movies. Thus, when a doggy dish washer and a poodle prostitute meet in the street, speech bubbles are replaced with a dialogue card which reads: ‘How much?’ ‘A hundred.’

Love has little time to blossom, however, as a fallen meteorite reanimates the dog, cat and bird people population of the local graveyard, who swiftly get to work stripping fresh flesh from bones. The sillier the conceit - and zombie dog men are pretty silly - the funnier Jason’s dead-pan humour becomes. His next book is a time travel thriller titled I Killed Adolf Hitler. Woof, woof!

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