Saturday, September 12, 2009

Get Your War On

Here's how this works. I read a book or two and tell you about them and try not to get too long-winded, and maybe you'd like to think about reading them as well. This time, a review of Get Your War On (Soft Skull, 2008).

Some weeks back, I found myself pleased to read over Peter Bagge's recent Everybody is Stupid Except for Me, and considered how odd it felt to be reading political opinions with which I rarely agree, but enjoying their presentation so much. What then, to make of David Rees's webcomic Get Your War On, a viewpoint I agree with entirely, presented in a repetitive, obnoxious and shrill way that just left me exhausted and bored?

I think it was the critic Eleanor Ringel, reviewing Oliver Stone's JFK, who likened that experience to being trapped on a long airline flight with a grassy-knoller who just will not shut up. I was reminded of that constantly on this very long slog through dense word balloons and constant bad language. Every "character," and I use that term loosely, is incredibly well-read, and a remarkable wordsmith, able to drop lengthy, sarcastic bon mots into every conversation.

Don't get me wrong; I agree with damn near every sentiment that Rees expressed in this book. Indeed, I wish we had more writers and cartoonists with his anger and drive working in the public eye during Bush's presidency, but it's just endless bellowing in what ends up as a boring monotone.

And it just goes on and on, for 256 eyeball-bludgeoning pages. Eventually, the red ink will overwhelm your eyes so much that you'll see the clip art on the walls on the walls of your house and the insides of your eyelids. This is said to be the complete archive of Rees's strip, and if that's true, I appreciate the effort to get it right, even if for some reason it lacks page numbers. But it doesn't matter how much I agree with Rees about the right-wing's descent into insanity and hysteria over the first half of this decade, much like a twelve-hour director's cut of Fahrenheit 911, this is just not an experience that I ever want to have again. Not recommended.

No comments: