Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Levin on Dockery

Yee-haw! The latest online edition of The Comics Journal features a killer-diller extravaganza of an article by Bob Levin, all about our own J.T. Dockery's massive graphic tome In Tongues Illustrated. An excerpt:

"The gestalt is noir — private eyes, women in distress, criminal masterminds with brutish henchmen — but of a hallucinatory order. Stories run one page or a dozen. Characters vanish after a single appearance or recur several stories later, seemingly having run their course. Narratives do not sustain. Solutions do not surface. At one point, Dockery interrupts his string of fictions for the "true" account of Harry Stephen Keeler, who came out of an Illinois nut house in 1913 to compose countless pulp stories and novels (The Skull of the Waltzing Clown, The Case of the Transposed Legs) from a weave of obsessions, coincidence, and indecipherable ethnic dialogue, for, Dockery surmises, "an audience that [could]... not exist."

- - JSH

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