Tuesday, July 13, 2010

This Outpouring of Toxic Bile Brought to You by: Comics!

Yay! Scott Pilgrim Volume Six finally comes out today!

That means it's over, and I can finally stop hearing about how awesome the comic is about the unlikeable cheating douchebag who finds true love with a horrible manipulative woman, seemingly on no other basis than "it's got lotsa videogame references!" and "it's manga-inspired!" and "oh, after about four volumes, he finally grows up enough to dump the high-school girl he's been two-timing, so that makes it a story about personal growth!"

...oh, crap. There's still a movie coming out, isn't there? *sigh* Maybe someday.


Skychrono said...

It comes out next week... at least it does in America. So another week to endure, at the least.

Michael Hoskin said...

He broke up with his 1st girlfriend in the 2nd volume. He didn't intend to cheat on her...he's just incredibly thick-headed.

John Seavey said...

He was "thick-headed"? Unless he literally was so dense that he forgot his current girlfriend existed, that's not really an excuse.

He didn't cheat on her because he was oblivious to the rules of social etiquette, he cheated on her because it was easier than having an awkward break-up and hurting her feelings. That's not stupidity, that's emotional cowardice.

And it bothers me that the series seems to be all about showing how "he's a real heroic guy because he's willing to fight for love," but kind of brushes under the rug that he's not a real heroic guy because he's afraid to be a grown-up and winds up crushing the heart of a seventeen-year-old girl as a result. (And I'm not even getting into the "23 dating 17" thing, which is something else the series tries desperately to pretend isn't skeezy.)

Scott Pilgrim is really a pretty big jerk. I'm given to understand that he becomes less of a jerk as the series goes on, but I'm not really willing to invest sixty bucks into "guy becomes less of a jerk, gets girl." (And frankly, he and Ramona deserve each other. There are plenty of women out there that won't demand you beat up everyone she ever dated. Just saying.)

Wally said...

I like the Scott Pilgrim comics, but you're spot on.

The main character came off as extremely sleazy and lazy to me. I never cared for him.

Fred said...

I've been trying, for several months now, to read the first volume, and I've been wholly failing to see what the fuss is.

The movie looks cute, but I haven't read enough of the comics to be enthused, enraptured, or offended by it. And I've been finding it hard to build up the enthusiasm to read more.

Kate Holden said...

Isn't the whole point that Scott is a douchebag and Ramona is incredibly capricious with tonnes of baggage though? Scott's friends frequently say things like 'if your life had a face, I'd punch it in the balls' to him, his only real redeeming features being his simple, straightforward and non-manipulative nature and that eventually he does pull himself together and attempt to be a better person and an adult.

Scott is a complete waster when the books start. He has no job, he's in a terrible band, he's clinging onto adolescence by being in a platonic relationship with a high school girl and he lives by sponging off his gay friend from college. He has absolutely no direction in life, no ambition, and can barely understand adult concepts, trying to equate them to game mechanics in order to grasp them. He's two-timed girls simply by being utterly oblivious to what he was doing, and shying away from anything difficult.
Ramona is a bitch and a half, with a history of relationships with terrible guys, and for good reason. She is habitually capricious and a compulsive liar. Scott himself says he wouldn't date her if he was a tiny bit less infatuated. She's two-timed guys because she manipulates people as a defence mechanism and to make herself feel more powerful

Scott is a twenty-something who's too simple and too immature and has to grow up.
Ramona is a twenty-something who grew up too fast and has become very cynical, and has to chill out and learn to be more trusting.
The flaws of each character cause tension, which will hopefully, in the finale, balance them out and help them both become functional adults. You're not meant to necessarily look up to them, they're flawed characters, not superheroes. To me, being around the age of the characters as the books have been coming out, it feels like a fairly accurate portrayal of what it's like being in your early twenties, getting over yourself, realising people won't all do stuff for you like they did when you were a kid, and growing up.

Unknown said...

I could never really get into Scott Pilgrim because while I get that meeting Ramona has pushed him to grow up, the fantastical NES-style circumstances attached to the situation don't make it that much of a stretch for him. If anything, being able to obtain true love by living out a video game just reinforces his immaturity.

I liked the scenes of him bickering with his roommates and struggling to find and keep a job quite a bit, though. Maybe I just loathe stories about twentysomething slackers in general, as being able to just coast through life and joke around with your buddies is a luxury that I can't sympathize with AT. ALL.

Allegretto said...

I've kinda been waiting to know your take on the latest JMS shenanigans over at DC, namely the Wonder Woman debacle, and the Superman thoring.

Also, Scott Pilgrim stopped being awesome like, idk, four issues ago.

And then again when Michael Cera became him.

AlephZ said...

Thank you.

Seriously. Thank you.

Solid Filament said...

Yes, only read comics where people start out good or identifiably heroic. Excellent!

Scott Pilgrim gets more credit than it deserves because it's lifestyle porn for indie-rock kids, but it's not bad, and it's fun to read, and I don't know why we're all pretend-vomiting over it.

Justin Garrett Blum said...

I don't have much of an opinion of Scott Pilgrim. A few years back, I spotted one of the graphic novels in the library and tried to read it. I made it through about ten pages, realized I had no idea what was going on, and I gave up. It was a little too gimmicky for me, and I generally just get annoyed about anything that has to do with twenty-somethings.