Sunday, September 30, 2012

Blood Song: A Silent Ballad by Eric Drooker

You could read Blood Song: A Silent Ballad as a modern version of of the universal hope of spring. In the Eqyptian telling, Osiris is struck down; in the Norse telling, frost giants kill Frejr; and so on. Winter comes and all looks lost, but at the end of winter, life begins anew. All of us must die, but life will go on. What could be more realistic and more hopeful?
Or you could read this story as a reminder that our habit of slaughtering people who are militarily weaker has consequences that we would not like if we were on the other side of the gun. This is without a doubt a more disturbing message for some people, and it should be; but no one ever became a better person through denial.
The artwork is excellent and suits the story. Some may criticize the pacing, because a lot of the work consists of the protagonist just going from here to there. However, I think this spacing is necessary, because the work would be too intense if it were only the action scenes. There's a place for comic books with a *pow!* on every page, but this isn't it; must of life consists of the gaps between the action.
Finally, this work shines as an example of the power of graphic novels to tell stories. Love it or hate it, but don't miss it!