Hi all...I think I have settled down some from last week. Lets look at something completely different. This week we look at Charles Burns' X'ed Out published by Pantheon Books.
If you have never read Burns' Black Hole, you really need to stop reading this and go do that right now. Seriously...I will wait.
Ok...wasn't that good?!?! Now, X'ed Out is kind of like that. With stark imagery, precise linework, and a general economy of words. But then, X'ed Out is also very different. It is the first volume of what people on the cover are heralding as a masterpiece (though if something isn't complete yet, can you really call it that?) and sets up a lot more questions than it answers. In the story, we meet Doug. He seems to be operating in a dream world as he recovers from some sort of illness or injury that is never fully explained. This dream world seems to have odd connections to what appears to be the real world and what unfolds is a series of scenes that establish that nothing in either world may be what they seem. He is an aspiring beat poet and photographer with a serious crush on a very odd young lady. His dreams reflect aspects of his life, but twisted into a whole new world full of strange and disturbing characters that inform his waking memories. Some very heady stuff and very intriguing.