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The Talk h/c

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The Talk h/c back

Darrin Bell


Page 45 Review by Stephen

"I know this makes no sense to him...
"Because it shouldn't."

Your heart will shatter.

Page 45 Comicbook Of The Month: THE TALK by Darrin Bell, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for cartooning. And just like IN's Will McPhail, Bell has mastered this medium too, ensuring this is fluid and fluent with some stunning visual flourishes.

I am in unequivocal awe. Gripping from cover to cover, Bell eloquently renders several sequences of his impossibly eloquent autobiography vicariously terrifying. Truly terrifying.

And most profoundly affecting of all are the titular Talks at the beginning and close of the memoir: one delivered to himself by his Mom on why he as a boy who is black cannot possibly have a more realistic toy gun; the other by Darrin to his own son when the subject again becomes unavoidable. And it's as much for their safety as anything else.

"None of this makes any sense at all."

Because it shouldn't. But it's true. Still, to this day, right now in 2023, it remains culpably, appallingly true.

Massively recommended on every level, I cannot conceive of a single reason why THE TALK should not be considered as vital a text for any comics reader as Spiegelman's MAUS. I can't. Unless it's the comics medium's own version of canonical snobbery. Or worse.