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The Chilling Reality of Graphic Novels

Fun Home coverIf you missed the first 40 minutes today’s Comic-Con panel on Reality-Based Graphic Novels, apart from watching comic auteurs the likes of 2007 Eisner Award winner Alison Bechdel, Joe Matt, Rick Geary, Guy Delisle and Miriam Katin speak into a microphone rather robotically… good for you.

The chill began to leave the room, however, first, when Matt took over the mike and melted for good after a perfectly timed first and astute question from the audience (wished I’d asked it myself) about what compelled this talented group of creators to turn the graphic novel instead of prose in the first place. “I feel compelled to represent reality as well as I can to capture this stuff,” Bechdel said.

“There isn’t a language among the three I already know that I could’ve used to tell this story,” Katin, the cartoonist of the World War II memoir We Are On Our Own says. On the other hand, Delisle, a former animator, had a very unique reason for turning to the graphic novel: “I have a very bad memory.”

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