5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
Daniel Clowes has to be one of my favorite graphic novelists, based solely upon this book and on one of his other great works, Ghost World. Clowes has a stark, bold artistic style that catches the eyes, while the intriguing and involved stories that unfold before you keep your eyes glued to the book. Alternately intellectual, philosophical, sensual, funny, evocative,...
Published on May 19 2003 by A. Campling
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as Good as "Ghost World"
I read "David Boring" after being impressed by Clowes's previous graphic novel, "Ghost World," but I was somewhat disappointed. Unlike the cynical and terminally ironic teenage protagonists of the earlier book, the title character of "David Boring" never really comes to life, and neither do the lesser characters. (One of the notable achievements of "Ghost World" was the...
Published on Feb. 9 2003 by S. F. Bell
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4.0 out of 5 stars If this is your first exposure to Clowes...,
read Ghost World first, because it holds together a lot better than David Boring, even though this is a much more ambitious book.
This was actually the first Clowes that I read, and it was the first third of the book, about him courting and then losing Wanda, that had me absolutely hooked. I was completely with him during the second third, too, but I started losing it after he kept getting involved with woman after woman, indicating that the love story with Wanda - which had my complete attention and sympathy - was just part of a desire on his part to seek out women with big rears. It made some sort of thematic sense, but Clowes gave Wanda too much character to be just another pair of cheeks and, after she departs, the book seems to move hastily through a whole series of intricately conceived but largely arbitrary adventures, with little human interest.
I think if Clowes had committed more time and energy - maybe another forty or fifty pages - to the end of the book, it wouldn't seem like it was rushing towards an ending that sort of came out of nowhere. And although it lacks the emotional impact of Ghost World, the book still left me with an incredible feeling of loss, even as it seemed to be somewhat redemptive.
(The artwork here, incidentally, is probably his best ever, with every frame showing the marks of care and thought.)
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant,
Daniel Clowes has to be one of my favorite graphic novelists, based solely upon this book and on one of his other great works, Ghost World. Clowes has a stark, bold artistic style that catches the eyes, while the intriguing and involved stories that unfold before you keep your eyes glued to the book. Alternately intellectual, philosophical, sensual, funny, evocative, and sexy, this is definitely a must-read for any fan of graphic novels, or of Daniel Clowes.
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome,
the second book I've read by Daniel Clowes. Like the first, it also made me cry at the end at its beauty. This book is absolutely wonderful, and I reccomend it to anyone. The characters are so rich, the mood so developed. Daniel Clowes has a way of making everything feel not only "real", but "exciting"...and this is no exception.
4.0 out of 5 stars Like A Bullet in the Head......,
His last name may be Boring, but his story sure isn't.....When his "Friend" is mysteriously murdered (The wound that killed him apparently looks like a giant thumb-print in his forehead), David's life takes a turn towards the surreal: His dream girl mysteriously disappears, he is shot in the head for (Seemingly...) no reason, and when he is taken to a deserted island to recuperate, World War III seems to break out, complete with germ-warfare.
Writer/Illustrator Dan Clowes continues to deliver books that are impossible to encapsulate, yet impossible to put down. I literally had no idea where the story (And characters) would end up, but I couldn't wait to see them arrive. Murder, infidelity, terrorism....It's all a part of the mix, and Clowes does a wonderful job of making all of the pieces fit. If Clowes is capable of producing work that ISN'T groundbreaking, it'd be news to me. Highly recommended!
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as Good as "Ghost World",
I read "David Boring" after being impressed by Clowes's previous graphic novel, "Ghost World," but I was somewhat disappointed. Unlike the cynical and terminally ironic teenage protagonists of the earlier book, the title character of "David Boring" never really comes to life, and neither do the lesser characters. (One of the notable achievements of "Ghost World" was the way in which even the minor characters who appeared in only a few panels would take on sharply defined and believable personalities.) The story also never really takes off, and often seems to be a series of random, improbable incidents intended to give David Boring more reasons for his sullen depression- though the background narrative (never clearly defined) about mysterious terrorist bombings and biological attacks seems prophetic, since the book was published in 2000.
5.0 out of 5 stars Searching for something,
David Boring is searching for something. His father, that perfect girl, meaning. His meaningless sexual encounters, his collection of things (scrapbook, comic book), his life as a movie, his friends, his fear of his mother all culminating in a story that is anything but boring. David's life is like one of his old movies, which we are taken through from start to finish. As the world slowly revolves without his noticing, much to annoyance of some of his friends, he can't seem to find what it is he wants.
This comic written as a whole story, rather than the vingettes of Ghost World provide a detailed narative that is quite satisfying. Every character is detailed, to the point of having a list of credits at the end (Daniel Clowes makes a cameo, but where I don't know.) The three acts give a clear path through which to solve the enigma of what David is searching for. I won't tell you if he finds an answer at the end, you'll have to read it for yourself.
Daniel shows us another excellent window into the lives of teenagers and young adults in the post-modern meaningless world that we all inhabit. Although some of the panels may shock you in their graphic nature, it is a real world, a real place that we live in and not a fake, cliche/angst ridden hell hole that some may have us believe.
4.0 out of 5 stars Not boring,
Although Daniel Clowes' GHOST WORLD wasn't that appealing to me, DAVID BORING was surprisingly engaging. Like Chris Ware's JIMMY CORRIGAN, it begins by introducing the reader to reminders of traditional comic book superheros, and although the rest of the book is anything but a stereotypical comic, it retains various aspects of superhero comic books. It's wonderfully dramatic and fantastic, transitioning from a story situated in reality to one that's dominated by mysterious deaths, apocalyptic fears, and taboo relationships. With BORING, Clowes shows life as at once dreamy, vacuous, adventurous, and painful. He ends up with a moving tale that is deeply structured and well worth the hour or two it takes to read.
5.0 out of 5 stars Massively original and entertaining graphic novel,
I remember what it was like to be nineteen. This book captures it perfectly. David Boring is the best graphic novel I've ever read. This "pornographic epic" tells the tale of a dorky nineteen-year-old trying to get laid while the world is about to come to an end. He gets shot, then goes to a deserted island where he has sex with an older woman who then commits suicide. This book is very well written, I really enjoyed it.
5.0 out of 5 stars Whimsical Take of Apocalyptic Times,
The whole story is set against the year of 1999, leading to its end. The threat of a terrorist act and killings underscore the human follies of this funny, but sad story. The cataclysmic apocalypse of the world takes a secondary importance to being left over by love, in loneliness. A very lyrical and interesting juxtaposition.
Daniel Clowes has a tremendous gift as a storyteller, and in this comic book, he conscientiously chooses the 3-act screenplay form, both using it as a legitimate vehicle for his story and also as a deconstructive techinique. His characters are wonderfully three-dimensional, and the way they go in and out of love is always shown through a sympathetic, but detached view. The mistakes the characters make, the yearnings and losses... approximate the real human experience. The ending is a hopeful one - even as the end-time seems to be near, another possibility of love keeps David Boring afloat. Although Chris Ware seems to have caught the public and critical acclaim, when it comes to telling stories of modern alienation, there is no graphic artist to best Daniel Clowes. Not yet. Impressive.
5.0 out of 5 stars sublime, provocative, intelligent,
"Ghost World" is widely responsible for the recent gush of indy fanboys and girls who wouldn't otherwise be reading comics flocking towards Daniel Clowes' books, but 'David Boring' is one of, if not the most well-structured, cerebral and calculating collection in the Clowes oeuvre. I won't give a plot description because I think that the book's title and Clowes' overall style is telling enough, but I will say that the themes this book covers are expansive, as well as provocative and eloquently discussed. The story is charming in what seems ostensibly to be a meandering, misanthropic narrative about ennui and apathy, but manages to discuss so much more about the difference that mediums like film and comic books have on culture, as well the internal structure of their own realities. The book has such a curious pace that the ending seems like it can't possibly be satisfactory, and yet Clowes concludes this book in the most sublime and beautiful fashion, and in a way that I realized was a perfect and fitting ending for the story. David Boring's self-concious narrative quirks were performed so often and were overt enough to almost irritate me, but I feel in the end that Clowes allowed the story's self-concious tendencies to be tactful and done in a way that is pertinent to the subject matter. Also, if you are someone who does not normally purchase a hardcover book but often flirts with the idea, I would reccomend going with those desires on this occasion. The book feels so literary and authentic that it almost feels better to own a more prestigous print of it. Wonderfully detailed illustrations as well. If there were any doubts that Clowes is producing books that should remain a part of our literary canon for years to come, this book does away with them.
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David Boring by Daniel Clowes (Paperback - Sept. 24 2002)
CDN$ 25.95 CDN$ 16.26
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