Direction: Left to Right
by: David Ratte
Publisher: Yen Press
Type: One Shot
Genre: Shounen, Humour,
In Sam’s world, pollution is such that everyone is forced to wear gas masks at all times. He lives with a lovely young woman whose face he has not seen in years. Though pollution still poses a few (arguably) negligible problems here and there, Sam finds the state of his world…normal! At the factory where he works, everyone seems resigned to live in such putrid surroundings; “It’s just how things are!” “It’s not dangerous!” they say.
I rather surprisingly loved this comic book, yup that’s right it’s a french comic strip book with no real story per-say. However what it does have is an interesting art style and a killer sense of humour.
David Ratte is a rather good artist, who draws a hilarious style of comic book. If my British readers remember a annual series of books called the Broons and Oor Wullie you’ll know they sort of style used.
Each page tells an individual story, usually with some sort of humour buried within it. Unlike those two series of books though this one is in full colour. Ratte makes use of the colour for some of the jokes used, which made me chortle way like i haven’t for a long while.
The disappointing thing about this volume is that there’s a hell of a lot of wasted space, as most of the pages only have art on the top half of the pages. There is the odd matchbook style art on the bottom, which like the main tends towards the comical; but i can’t help but feel it’s just wasted space.
So the entire volume is about one thing, taking the mickey of the USA’s pollution and the views of the western world about it. It’s funny until you start asking yourself about how this matches with reality, then it gets a bit thoughtful.
I loved the humour, i can’t say this enough. Everyone wearing gas masks pretending everything is fine, while their world is invaded by penguins and polar bears. The fact that we hardly ever see the characters with their gas masks off adds some rather comical scenes, such as wearing sexy negligee with a gas mask, or getting dressed up in a sexy dress for a night out, only to cover it up with a coat that’s as unsexy as you can get, gas mask and umbrella.
I am pleased that Yen Press kept the full colour aspect of the volume, since i think bleaching it would have not only ruined some of the humour, but also stunted some of the art, making it weaker and not as enjoyable.
They did a pretty good job on translating the volume from french and releasing a quality release. Personally I’m hoping for more of David stuff, or just more stuff like this, whether it’s french, British or what ever.
Not really a lot more i can say on this volume to be honest. Due to the nature of it, the fact it’s rather small. It’s definitely worth buying IMO, one of the few I’ve bought recently I’ve not regretted.