Friday, December 29, 2017

Life, Love, and Longing

Royal City #7-8 (Image, November-December 2017, $3.99)
Like Eleanor & the Egret, this is one of my favorite comic books of 2017. Jeff Lemire is one of the better writers active in comics today, and I have been thoroughly enjoying this non-superhero title, which Lemire also draws.

While the book's sense of time is rather fluid, the book seems to be about a teenage boy named Tommy who develops a brain condition of some sort. It's about all the worry that that entails, as well as how it affects his family and their relationships. The book also touches on the people we think are, the people we think our parents are, and the uncertainty that everyone feels inside every single day, alone but together. The artwork and wash-like watercolor tones are very subtle and quiet, perfect for the emotive storyline.

That subject matter makes Royal City a standout on the comics racks. It could be a novel or series of short stories. In the end, the series is about life,  love, and longing.

#7 focuses on Tommy going in for a CAT Scan or similar test, which leads to a referral to a specialist, and his father's introduction to antique radios. #8 addresses Tommy's envy of his older brother Richie and jealousy of his relationship with Clara. After some kind of panic attack driving around with his brother and his friends, Tommy walks home, where he spends some time with Tara. She just learned she's pregnant.

I cannot wait until the next issue of this comic book comes out. Always enjoyable and building toward something important.

Availability: Royal City #1-5 have been collected in Royal City Volume 1: Next of Kin. You can also buy these two issues online.

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