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Grandville vol 1

Grandville vol 1 back

Bryan Talbot


Page 45 Review by Stephen

Anthropomorphic, steampunk conspiracy thriller which blasts its way across the most luminously coloured pages you can imagine. The opening splash alone will have you slack-jawed: the lighting effects on the Eiffel Tower and its reflection in the puddles are gorgeous, whilst the contrast between the textures of the cobbles and water is absolutely magnificent. This immediate impact is instantly followed by a gripping chase sequence through the streets of Belle Époque Paris and then <bang> instant change of pace and style for the French-speaking Socialist Republic of Britain where, in a quaint country village, a body is discovered.

Everything about this will raise smiles: the detailed architecture, the seamlessly choreographed fight scenes between a menagerie of bipedal beasts, each with its subtly individualised body language, the feral mouth of Inspector LeBrock, the language ("pneumail"), the jokes ("Papa Ratzi") and the multitude of homages from Manet and Mucha (with added OMAHA THE CAT DANCER) to Spirou et Fantasio and Tintin's Snowy, none of which are thrown in your face but left for you to discover yourselves. For that density of references amongst many other things, it's highly recommended to LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN fans.

I had an absolute blast throughout, and not to bang on about the colouring or anything, but you wait until you get to the light in Turkish baths and the insanely detailed wallpaper in Sarah Bernhardt's boudoir. Being from Talbot, of course, there's more than a little political meat on the bone as well.

Unlike ALICE IN SUNDERLAND and METRONOME, you were never going to get GRANDVILLE as Page 45's Comicbook Of The Month. I am sick of giving away the works of one of this country's most accomplished creators at a knock-down price purely because whatever he does tends to be the best in any period. If there is anything more that Page 45 could possibly do to promote Bryan Talbot's work over the last fifteen years, I would love to hear it. Have you even seen Tom's new amazing and enormous window display? ALICE IN SUNDERLAND must by now be the biggest-selling book we have ever stocked, and that's why after two whole years it is still in our window in addition to Tom's exceptional work there on GRANDVILLE.

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