Chris Tamarri advance-reviews Local #1
Chris Tamarri advance-reviews Local #1:
"It’s hard to talk about Local without referencing Demo... But from what [#1] suggests, Local should have a conceptual leg up. Both series are about the everyman, characters empathetic not because of their commonalities, but because of their shared idiosyncrasies. Local’s different in that it doesn’t give you a way out. If a character in Demo did something you’ve always wanted to do, but didn’t, or couldn’t, or did something you could never do, or wouldn’t, it was easy to draw a line between the character and the reader. That line was the subtle element of the fantastic—increasingly subtle as the series progressed—that prevented complete identification. This girl in Local, she does what she does, and it may or may not be what you would’ve done, but it’s up to you to figure out where and why the difference lies.
"Local is exactly the sort of work Brian Wood should be creating. His voice is perfectly suited to this sort of Carver-style accidentally-on-purpose insight. It’s a sort of sleight-of-hand really, almost as though he’s trying to see how high he can get the ratio of information presented to affection earned. This girl is defined in negative; we have to figure out who she is by taking note of who she’s not.
"Ryan Kelly, who’s good enough to make me almost forget to miss Becky Cloonan. Kelly’s line reminds me of Paul Pope’s, that same sort of blunt grace that makes the unattractive appealing. There are certain shots of the girl where I fell in love with her, in that embarrassing way we all do with fictional characters. And then there are other shots where she’s almost repellent, where, God help me, I almost understand why her boyfriend’s such a dick. It’s not that the quality of art dips. It’s that the presentation of the girl is supposed to be more of a report of her self-image than strict portraiture; If I don’t find her attractive, it’s because she doesn’t want anybody to. In both praise of Kelly’s work and his girl’s, though, I’ll say that the last panel of the story made me want to blast “Thunder Road” and give somebody a high-five.
"(Sorry. I’m from Jersey. Springsteen means “happy.”)
"(Except for Nebraska.)"