Friday, December 28, 2012

O'Malley's Scott Pilgrim: "Scott Pilgrim's Precious Little Life" by Austin Davenport

The story of Scott Pilgrim is divided into six separate volumes, so we will focus on volume one, “Scott Pilgrim's Precious Little Life”.  The artwork in the Scott Pilgrim series is very cartoonish and simplistic.  The faces of the characters are not very detailed, but the reader is still able to distinguish which character is which.  I resembles the template of the Charlie Brown series, where all the faces are the same, but certain details like hair or clothing show the differences between characters.  The feeling this artwork gives off is one of normalcy.  It is has a typical cartoon feel to it.  It has some aspects of “superhero” comics to it with the fight scene towards the end of the book, as it has lines in the background showing movement and words used to show sounds like “kpok” and “swok”.  The story is of a normal guy who wants to date a normal girl who has some not so normal ex-boyfriends.  Due to the fact that the main character is a “normal” guy, the artwork, to suit this tone of being “normal”, is itself a very “normal” looking cartoon style.
This book is a graphic novel because it has a very comedic feel to it, that may be why it's a “comic”, ha!  The book is one of witty humor, playful banter, and awkward situations readers can relate to.  Having pictures to illustrate some of these moments just adds to the humor of it all.  Most, if not all the funny things in the novel are told or witnessed through the pictures, so if this book did not use the graphics, it would loose some if not most of it's humor.  A film was made out of this novel and was very successful.  Having this story as a graphic novel or movie works great, but it may not be as prominent as a novel alone.

As far a narration, there is no narrator!  The story is told through what the characters say to each other through conversations.  There is no overall narrator who talks over the story, which gives it a distinct style and helps the characters to come alive a little more.  The reader gets to view what happens in the story from their own point of view, and not some one else's story of what happened.

At the end of volume one, Matthew Patel, an unknown character at this point, drops down into a concert that Scott and his band are performing.  Patel comes and starts to fight Scott for what seems no reason.  As the fight continues, Ramona, Scott's girlfriend, tell him that Patel is an ex-boyfriend of hers.  She tells their back story and Scott ends up defeating Patel, in which coins appear once he is vanquished... much like you would see in a video game.  After the fight, Ramona tells Scott that in order for them to go out, Scott must defeat all seven of her “evil” ex-boyfriends.  Scott wants a relationship with Ramona, so he agrees, but looks very shocked and distraught after about the ordeal.  The books ends here with “To Be Continued” written on it.  It gives the reader a sense that this story is far from over, and may intrigue them to read the rest of the series to see just what will happen.  This scene is both fun to read and view.  It also gives the most information on the back story, and shows what is to come for the rest of the books.

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