|[The opening to COMPLEX “Luv_Underscore’s_U”]|
|[Actors Katelan Foisy and Chris Miskiewicz]|
|[Me posing with my first actual "officially" published comics work]|
“Complex” is hard to pin down, Foisy is Jasmine Bendory, a reporter assigned to interview VJ Quid, a VJ who appears to play floating computer image music things. VJ stood for “Video Jockey” in the halcyon days of Downtown Julie Brown, but it doesn’t seem that VJ Quid is standing in front of a camera shouting about Billy Idol, so it probably means something else in this context. It’s a sci-fi comic though at the same time I feel like the ideas being talked about in “Complex” are probably a lot closer to reality than I’m aware of since I barely spend any amount of time in reality as it is and when I am present I’m not looking up tech enhancements. I’m usually just picking up my Wednesday haul at Comics and More.
“Complex” flits through genres, as quickly as it moves, making you wonder if this is actually a science fiction story, or an erotic one, or a fame parable or a character study. It’s all of those things and it accomplishes them in a very small amount of time, and though the work itself is short you can tell that a lot of work and love went into it. It’s a comic that challenges your perceptions not only of the high minded ideas being bandied about, but also your perceptions of what comics should look like. Photocomix are not an easy sell and it’s because it’s so difficult to get them right, to avoid making something that looks like it was thrown together for Wizard Magazine (RIP) filler. You need to have models who can capture the range of emotions demanded by the authors without appearing to be trying too hard and Foisy and Miskiewicz nail it effortlessly. An enticing introduction to a story I hope to see more of soon.
Photo-comic COMPLEX: “Luv_Underscore’s_U” by Seth Kushner, Chris Miskiewicz, and Dean Haspiel reminds us that the comics medium is expansive, varied, and should never feel too comfortable. Katelan Foisy and Miskiewicz star in this futuristic psychological landscape where the solid realities of the photo images help readers keep a grip on the otherwise shifting definitions of reality in the narrative. There’s a subtle ambiguity in the nature and future of technology, it’s use and misuse to contribute to human experience, and on the whole the photo-comic not only tells the reader but shows the reader the spell-like suspension of disbelief comics, in the right hands, are still capable of creating.
I’m not going to describe this story because words aren’t enough. You have to pick up this book to see for yourself this compelling, thought-provoking, innovative short.
Look for announcements regarding the future of COMPLEX soon.
|[Katelan Foisy poses with the published comic, photo by Katelan]|