Bookmarks: Transported to another world

By: Laura Antonucci, Columnist

I don’t like “Ghost World.” It is so close to home for me, with every page and each panel, I had a flashback of something from high school. Memories were drudged up from tightly packed corners and flew around my head while I tried to read this intense story about two girls so lost in themselves, they have no clue who they are.

Courtesy of Fantagraphics Books
Courtesy of Fantagraphics Books

Enid and Rebecca have just graduated high school and are spending the summer wallowing in their teen angst, dreading having to make a decision more defining than what diner they are going to have lunch at.

But then, you get thrown a curve ball. Enid and Rebecca are not as shallow as they originally seem, they are just acting out of the boredom that comes with being an “in-between.” In between adolescence and adulthood, life with people and life alone, between the options available and the absoluteness of making any decision that will influence your life. Enid and Rebecca are both very afraid of what adulthood actually means. They see idiots they went to high school with making very publicized career moves, but in the most revolting way paralleled with the only other implied option: boring domesticity. Older versions of themselves that settled for the next to nothing a small town has to offer.

The aesthetic of “Ghost World” is as stark and unforgiving as the material. Black, white, and cyan are the only colors used, except on the cover, which has pink, yellow, and a small variety of other muted colors. The effect is that the constant visual assault of cyan leaves you feeling off kilter and unfamiliar with the given surroundings. While the surroundings are that of any small town anywhere, the people in this town are people you know. The use of unfamiliar color keeps you from getting complacent and wondering when, if at all, the scenery will change.

Read it, buy it, it’s only $12. Daniel Clowes does a fantastic job recreating everything uncomfortable and nostalgic about post-adolescence.

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