Thursday, November 1, 2012

Comic Quickie: Lose #4

Michael DeForge is one of those artists who is well loved by other artists.  It seems like whenever I read or listen to an interview with any indie comic artist, they always mention DeForge as one of their favorite artists.

Because of this fact, I've been eager to get my hands on some sort of published comic by the man.  It turns out those are hard to come by though.  I was looking for something more substantial than comics of the anthologized, or mini comics variety, which led me towards his lengthier work; his four issues of Lose.  Lose is published by Koyama Press, a publishing company that is quietly putting out some great indie comics.

Apparently, DeForge is making an impact, because issues one through three of Lose were completely sold out. Undeterred, I bought the fourth and most recent issue, also known as the "fashion issue".

There are three different comic stories contained in this issue, all of which I found to be a perplexing mix of interesting stories that wander deeply into the realms of weirdness pretty quickly.  The first story involves a young man who falls victim to a strange communicable disease which covers his body in S&M attire which also appears to be some sort of symbiosis.  From there, there's a story about the fashions of Canadian royalty, and story where every living thing, both humans and animals, in a small Canadian town have the same face...Staceyface

DeForge may be an artist's artist, but I'm not so sure he's an artist that matches my tastes.  Frankly, after reading Lose #4, I'm slightly confused as to what the fuss is all about.  DeForge's art is different...possibly even "fresh", and interesting to look at, but it's not the most accessible style.  Additionally, his stories all had moments of greatness, yet they quickly to dipped into levels of weirdness that was difficult to digest as a reader.

Maybe I'm missing something from this reading experience, maybe I'm not well versed enough in indie and underground comics to fully grasp the art and concepts...or maybe not. Forty-eight pages worth of material is a decent litmus test though.  The thing is, I'm not completely ready to write DeForge off. Despite feeling like I don't see what all the fuss is about, I still enjoyed the stories and the weirdness, just to a lesser degree than I expected given all the great things I've heard and read about the guy.  I'd like to see what else he's created in the world of comics, and form a more solid opinion.  Until then, I'll remain unconvinced of his awesomeness.

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