REVIEWS: Perfect Example – “The Fourth of July”

John sleeps till noon, doesn’t have a summer job, stays out until the early morning hours.  But he does have something going with Lita.  I love the panel where they’re laying on the couch making out, signified by "smack kiss etc."  Yet once they’re interrupted by a phone call, John is feeling down again.  He goes to a party and Kristi is there; his heart jumps out of his body (yes it does–look at the panel).  Kristi has never given him an answer and she wanders off to talk to others.  Lita shows up and it’s obvious that she likes him a lot, but he isn’t into her–blames himself for not allowing himself to be happy. 

On this particular night, John’s hair grows quickly.  His buddy Fred offers him a ride and that’s when he suspects that Fred and Kristi are a couple.

A week later Fred and Kristi pick him up to go watch fireworks.  John’s never felt so alone than being the third wheel and watching them together.  His hurting is shown by several silent panels of Fred and Kristi, John’s heart falling on the ground, and his eyes are closed.  His form and body language as drawn by Porcellino are simple visual signs of his internal stressing.

Back home (with the sun shining?) John’s frustration and anger overflow, especially as he finds himself locked out of his house.  Banging on the door, sobbing, he slides down to the ground, wondering where his family is.  Here there is a panel blank except for an image of lines radiating from a center.

A "smarter" friend finds him, takes him for a ride and they stop where the friend works.  Here is another revelation: " Because I saw then that life is like a dream."

In this last panel of this section, we see what looks like ocean waves with a crescent moon and single star in the sky.  Symbolic, I’d think, of a feeling of being small and alone.

This entry was posted in REVIEWS. Bookmark the permalink.