Blogging séance of sorts
2-year mark achieved
This Solrad piece is a way to tell you I am reflecting on these two years without telling you I am reflecting on these two years. I mean, it curiously contains more than a few esoteric “Easter eggs”.
I, too, enjoy salted peanuts: Tom Shapira on Blacksad – They All Fall Down Part One (Solrad)
It is a review of the 6th installment of the Blacksad noir comic book series. Can a 50s/60s US setting, populated by anthropomorphic animals, be adult and gritty? Yes.
The Spanish-made, French-published series has some top-notch artwork. “[T]here is a proper sense of location in the art, notes Shapira, and I agree: New York, a quasi-South suburb, Las Vegas, New Orleans, Route 66 in Texas and again New York convey the “right” ambience (as far as I can tell, never visited the States). The same applies for the various kinds of animal-people, who are loose stand-ins for racial and/or personality traits. Especially for the racial part, some criticism has been raised, but still, I think the concept works.
The stories revolve around corruption, revenge, hatred, the Red Scare, beatniks, labor racketeering and more. While they feature some benchmarks of the era (I was totally and inexcusably unaware of the racketeering affair - Ι guess I should have watched “On the Waterfront” at least once?), the series “creates a sort of generic soup of cultural references: Blacksad takes place in the “America” of “history” but fails to offer any specificity.” However, half-understood, second-order impressions are powerful enough and have propelled the series to sales and acclaims (and a video game) in Europe and the US. Deservedly, I daresay.