Pop Culture Gadabout
Thursday, August 20, 2009
      ( 8/20/2009 08:02:00 AM ) Bill S.  

"MEET ME WHEN YOU'RE LESS DRIPPY." After a print hiatus of two years, Roman Dirge's comic undead child Lenore has returned with a new publisher (Titan Books). To commemorate the occasion, cartoonist Roman Dirge has provided the Cute Little Dead Girl with her own origin. Those already familiar with Dirge's brand of loosey-goosey gothic humor will already know what to expect.

For those of you who've historically passed on this title when it originally showed on comics shop shelves, a small recap is in order. Lenore (note the E.A. Poe name) is a ten-year-old undead girl who resides on the requisite creepy mansion with a living doll named Ragamuffin. The latter serves as a steadying voice of reason for Lenore, a thankless task since the big-headed moppet with the skull barrettes in her hair seems incapable of holding onto an idea for more than a few panels. When she shows up, for instance, with a branch inexplicably sticking through her noodly right arm, the easily distracted kid launches into a long rambling explanation that never answers how the stick got there. When Ragamuffin asks what her story has to do with her arm, her response is to stare down as if she's never seen it before. Lenore, the Attention Deficit Cute Little Dead Girl.

The "plot" in issue number one -- such as it is -- concerns the return of a figure from our heroine's past: the mortician who unsuccessfully attempted to embalm Lenore 100 years ago. As Dirge recounts our heroine's origin, the dead girl simply rose from the embalming table halfway through the procedure: no further explanation is given for her resurrection and perhaps none is needed. The event ruins stunned mortician Mortimer Fledge, though, and he's granted long life after a "ridiculous amount of embalming fluid" is squirted into his mouth. He subsequently stalks Lenore out of a desire to "finally finish my job." Once captured, the bound Lenore tries to win the villain over with balloon animals.

All fairly silly, though not without its moments of grotesque comic violence: during the embalming scene, for instance, Lenore's torso balloons with embalming fluid, like some cartoon animal getting inflated with air, though Dirge makes the moment look much more visually unpleasant than the old cartoons ever did. His bug-eyed drawing style and convincingly childlike characterization mute the strip's essential bleakness, however. If the end results aren't Edward Gorey -- or even Charles Addams -- they do possess their own appealingly goofy brand of dementia.


# |

Pop cultural criticism - plus the occasional egocentric socio/political commentary by Bill Sherman (popculturegadabout AT yahoo.com).

On Sale Now!
Measure by Measure:

A Romantic Romp with the Fat and Fabulous
By Rebecca Fox & William Sherman

(Available through Amazon)

Measure by Measure Web Page

Ask for These Fine Cultural Blogs & Journals by Name!

aaronneathery.com News
Aaron Neathery

American Sideshow Blow-Off
Marc Hartzman

Arf Lovers
Craig Yoe

Sean T. Collins

Barbers Blog
Wilson Barbers

The Bastard Machine
Tim Goodman

The Beat
Heidi MacDonald

Kevin Church

Big Fat Blog
Paul McAleer

Big Mouth Types Again
Evan Dorkin

Laura "Tegan" Gjovaag

Blog This, Pal!
Gordon Dymowski

Rod Lott

Cartoon Brew
Amid Amidi & Jerry Beck

Cartoon Web Log!
Daryl Cagle

Clea's Cave
Juana Moore-Overmyer

Collected Editions

The Comics Curmudgeon
Josh Fruhlinger

The Comics Reporter
Tom Spurgeon

Christopher Butcher

Comics Waiting Room
Marc Mason

Comics Worth Reading
Johanna Draper Carlson

a dragon dancing with the Buddha
Ben Varkentine


Electromatic Radio
Matt Appleyard Aaron Neathery


Eye of the Goof
Mr. Bali Hai

Fred Sez
Fred Hembeck

Greenbriar Picture Shows
John McElwee

The Groovy Age of Horror
Curt Purcell

The Hooded Utilitarian
Noah Berlatsky

Hooray for Captain Spaulding
Daniel Frank

The Horn Section

The House Next Door
Matt Zoller Seitz

Howling Curmudgeons
Greg Morrow & Friends

The Hurting
Tim O'Neil

I Am A Child of Television
Brent McKee

I Am NOT the Beastmaster
Marc Singer

In Sequence
Teresa Ortega

Innocent Bystander
Gary Sassaman

Irresponsible Pictures

Jog - The Blog
Joe McCulloch

The Johnny Bacardi Show
David Allen Jones

Dirk Deppey

King's Chronicles
Paul Dini

Let's You And Him Fight
One of the Jones Boys

Mah Two Cents
Tony Collett


Michael's Movie Palace

Nat's TV
Nat Gertler

Ned Sonntag


News from ME
Mark Evanier

No Rock&Roll Fun
Simon B

Omega Channel
Matt Bradshaw

Pen-Elayne on the Web
Elayne Riggs

Peter David

Dorian White

Progressive Ruin
Mike Sterling

Punk Rock Graffiti
Cindy Johnson & Autumn Meredith

Revoltin' Developments
Ken Cuperus

Marc Bernardin

Matt Hinrichs

Self-Styled Siren

Spatula Forum
Nik Dirga

Tales from the Longbox
Chris Mosby


The Third Banana
Aaron Neathery & Friends

Thrilling Days of Yesteryear
Ivan G. Shreve, Jr.

Toner Mishap
B2 et al

Trusty Plinko Stick
Bill Doughty

TV Barn
Aaron Barnhart et al

Unqualified Offerings
Jim Henley

Various And Sundry
Augie De Blieck

Video WatchBlog
Tim Lucas

When Fangirls Attack
Kalinara & Ragnell

X-Ray Spex
Will Pfeifer

Yet Another Comics Blog
Dave Carter

A Brief Political Disclaimer:

If this blog does not discuss a specific political issue or event, it is not because this writer finds said event politically inconvenient to acknowledge - it's simply because he's scatterbrained and irresponsible.

My Token List of Poli-Blogs:

Roy Edroso


Jane Hamsher

James Wolcott

Lance Mannion

The Moderate Voice
Joe Gandelman


Amanda Marcotte & Friends

The Sideshow
Avedon Carol

Skippy, the Bush Kangaroo

Talking Points Memo
Joshua Micah Marshall

This Modern World
Tom Tomorrow

Welcome to Shakesville
Melissa McEwan & Friends

Blogcritics: news and reviews
Site Feed

Powered by Blogger

    follow me on Twitter