Ellsworth, Theo – Sleeper Car



Sleeper Car

It’s always a good day when I get a new comic from Secret Acres.  Sorry if that sounds exactly like the start of a commercial about Secret Acres, probably with Wilford Brimley sitting at a kitchen table reading from a teleprompter, but it’s the truth.  One thing that has changed about my comic reading habit since starting this website is that I get the bulk of my comics through the mail now, so of course it’s a good thing when one publisher, like this or Shortpants Press, is pretty much guaranteed to be good.  This is an excellent comic for anybody who was too scared of committing to a graphic novel to read Theo’s work, even though that’s a silly attitude to take and you should be at least mildly embarrassed by it.  There are many short pieces in here, dealing with a literal sleeper car, a car that collects information from a giant sleeping creature (not, however, using the sleeper car from the cover), how to build a pajama tent, Theo’s conviction about the 220nd President of the U.S., the creepiest train ride you’ll ever see, making it all the way to a big empty room, and a visual depiction of what happens when you let your mind wander waiting for a train.  These remarkable pieces would be enough for most comics, but wait, there’s more!  The main piece of the book deals with two robots making a bet.  One of them believes in the existence of living, breathing gnomes and one does not, so once the parameters of the bet are laid out, the first robot detaches his head and flies off to find the gnomes.  What follows is pages of that rarest of things: robot humor.  Nobody does it better than Theo, or really much at all that I’ve seen.  What you end up with is a book that is gorgeous and disturbing, funny and thought-provoking, wistful and disconnected.  Or possibly all of those things, or maybe even none, as few things defy description more than Theo’s work.  All I know for sure is that it needs to be read and enjoyed by everyone who still loves reading comic books, as nobody else is doing anything like this.  $6


Posted on April 23, 2010, in Reviews and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Ellsworth, Theo – Sleeper Car.

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