Friday, November 11, 2011


My favorite comic book series of the last decade, 2001-2010, was Bryan Lee O'Malley's Scott Pilgrim. Instead of being serialized in monthly single issues, it came out in larger paperback chunks approximately once a year. There are six volumes: Scott Pilgrim's Precious Little Life, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, Scott Pilgrim & the Infinite Sadness, Scott Pilgrim Gets it Together, Scott Pilgrim Vs. the Universe, and Scott Pilgrim's Finest Hour. The story is about a kinda-dumb Canadian slacker, Scott Pilgrim, who wants to date mysterious American Ramona Flowers. To do so, he must defeat her seven evil exes. Hilarity, action, romance, and even poignancy, ensue.

The movie, Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World, came out last year. It was too beautiful for this world, and was a complete box office disaster. Hardly anyone heard of the movie, much less saw it.

Yesterday almost none of the seniors showed up for school. Perhaps they wanted to begin observing Veteran's Day early, and were out performing good deeds for the veterans in their community. Whatever the case, I only had a few students in each Creative Reading class. I showed them the Scott Pilgrim books, and then we watched the first 45 minutes of the movie (basically volume one). I long ago learned that my students have tastes completely different from mine, so I had no idea how they would react, but they seemed to enjoy it. The second class in particular even laughed at all the right times. When I told them how badly the film had performed when first released, they were puzzled, and one student said, "But why? It's really funny." That warmed my heart.  

Today there's no school, which is a welcome relief. Next week is a full week, but then we only have two days of school and time off for Thanksgiving, and then we're only a hop, skip, and a jump from December, and everything goes crazy in December . . . so basically I need to hurry up and finish Persepolis soon, if I want to have time for that final project I had planned.


  1. "My favorite comic book series of the last decade, 2001-2010, was Bryan Lee O'Malley's Scott Pilgrim."

    I don't even know you any more.

  2. Really? I remember you having favorable feelings toward Scott Pilgrim, though that was years ago. I know you hate things when they get popular, but the movie really was a big flop, so doesn't that redeem it somewhat in your mind?

  3. I do recall liking the first volume, yes, and it always troubles me when something that is simply good and entertaining (not that there is anything at all wrong with that) is hailed with great obnoxiousness as being THE GREATEST THING OF ALL TIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMEEEEEEEEEEE!!!! The Pilgrim fanatics are as guilty of the Brown Sox (or whatever the Serenity, I mean, fans call themselves) for hyping the subsequent graphic novels and the film to unattainable heights.

    Ultimately though, I think I was just expecting a little more than a pop-culture mash-up of videogame tropes and twenty-something slacker angst for six volumes. It was clever once, but it just started to rub me the wrong way very quickly.

    Honestly, I'm a little surprised you liked it as much as you did. You work pretty hard, so I would have thought the heavy slacker elements alone would start to grate. Also, I know of your vast hatred of videogames from the time you ridiculed Final Fantasy X when I was playing through the scene where Yunalesca is coerced into marrying Seymour Guado in Bezelle.

  4. Throughout my twenties I had no idea what to do with my life so I drifted through a series of retail jobs that I didn't take seriously, all the while dreaming of getting a book published but never taking direct action to accomplish that dream. In what way do you not expect me to relate to slackers?