- Posted by Johanna on June 17, 2006 at 3:14 pm
- Category: Indy Comic Reviews
- CREDITS: by Robert Ullman
- PUBLISHER: Alternative Comics; $3.95 US
Grand Gestures is the story of three guys, just out of college, dealing with love and sex. Brady’s the horndog, picking up teenagers and sorority girls. Perry’s the shy one, so desperate for a girlfiend that when he finally gets the courage to talk to a girl he’s been fantasizing about, he turns her off.
Ken’s got a girlfriend, but he’s not happy with the situation. His apathy and desire to avoid conflict keeps him from taking any action, so he winds up doing nothing but bitching to his friends over and over.
Much of the story reflects a young adult slacker lifestyle, but the comic doesn’t feel like it’s supposed to be some kind of statement about a generation. It’s just these three guys’ stories. Sure, there are similarities to the experiences of others, but that’s because the basic motivation, sex, only has so many permutations and ways to express itself.
Clean lines and simple designs make characters look toy-like and interchangeable, which gives me the feeling that they’re empty inside, not affected by anything. They got to great lengths to avoid letting themselves feel, but then they tie themselves up in knots because they’re not feeling anything. The story doesn’t end but slips away, like the things Ken doesn’t want to deal with. His passive nature and avoidance causes others to leave him, putting him where he thinks he wants to be. It’s really life based on fear.
For sample strips or to order copies, visit Rob Ullman’s web page. Ullman also has released Lunch Hour Comix #1 (Alternative Comics, $4.95), a gathering of diary-like comics he created in an hour or less. I wouldn’t have known from the quality that these strips were done so quickly if he hadn’t made a point of it. Topics include the passing of time, bodily functions, walking the dog, buying a house, and creating comics. His insight continues to deepen, tracing his growth as an artist.