Monday, March 30, 2009

Doorman Bill/ Maybe he's going to see all the Zuda guys who live in the Keystone State

Doorman Bill is the last review for Zuda March, the comic is done by Diego Flavio Tripodi, who also does Mister Crimson.
Here is the synopsis: Life stopped making sense for a lonely man named Bill. Disenchanted with his life as a college doorman, Bill makes an unexpected decision to leave behind his job, his home and his city, and sets out on a trip to Pennsylvania for no reason but to make a journey. Early in his trip, Bill loses everything he has and ends up on a lonely road. With no money and no possessions, he will try to survive and reach his destination by traveling with people he finds along the road -- from heavy metal musicians to clowns and bums. Join Bill in his strange adventures on his journey to the Keystone State.

The first thing you notice in reading this story is of course the art and the colors, which I enjoyed a lot. It combined to give it a indy/bronze age feel to the comic. I really enjoyed the panel layout on the first screen impressive from the jump is the way all Zuda comics should try to be. The letters are very readable throughout, I've noticed over time all Zuda comics have gotten better at that. I enjoyed the dialogue of Bill throughout the story, other characters were not so impressive in their words. The concept of a guy who just can't take it anymore fits, but in today's times it might have made even more sense to have him get sacked. I liked the sight gags on screen 2, and Diego put in honest to goodness thought balloons, its been so long since I saw them in something that wasn't a humor strip, so great call on that! I can appreciate (actually i enjoy), a certain amount of drive-by weirdness in a story, which we get on screen 3 with the reveal of a serial killer. More thought balloons yeah, but I didn't really get Bill leaving everything on the bus, even if he was old and afraid. Then Bill goes into a bar and orders milk and cookies, the weirdness factor is certainly kicking up. We also get into a second chapter in only 8 screens.

I get the quirky, but what else is their?

So what is Jim talking about again? The bar scenes/ meet up with Jim is where things kind of go off the rails. The whole dialogue between Bill and Jim left me confused not with WHATS NEXT???, but what's going on. It got a little melodramatic with all the talk of barriers, losing rides, and a old foreshadowing classic 'storm's coming'. Two much hippie dippie bartender Jim really brought down my enjoyment of the comic. Still it was a pretty impressive effort from Diego, Jim detour aside.

Some nifty examples from the comic to show you what I mean.

On screen 7 panel 6 we have a nice little flashback, which did have me wondering why. The panel layout was easy to follow and helped to tell the story greatly. The colors are really so impressive, they clinch the mode I think the creator was going for here. The first half of the story was a great set-up to pull me in.

Too much of a good thing is more than enough.

Like it says in bold their was just too much weirdness as the story went on. The mood was established, but the story still stayed stalled. The conversation with Jim would have been better received by me if it happened sooner. Maybe a flashback to his pre-drifter days would have broke the monotony of the strange.

The art/colors are great and given more pages the story could grow on me. Good job Diego -3/5 stars.

1 comment:

  1. Hey man, thanks so much for taking the time to review Doorman Bill! I'm glad you liked the art and colors, and actually I'm also glad to hear your opinion about Jim's character, since from the feedback I got at Zuda, I was left with the impression that many readers were probably more interested in that character instead of in Bill-- probably because he's more "charming" that the main character...

    I totally understand your thoughts on the second chapter. I put some thought into giving more background information about Bill, but at the end I decided to include the bar scene in the first 8 screens, and leave Bill's "secret origin" for later-- which was probably like asking too much of the readers to trust/vote this comic, but oh well, that's how it was. :D

    Thanks again!!!