Tuesday, 7 November 2017

The Old Geezers, Volume 1: Alive and Still Kicking Review (Wilfrid Lupano, Paul Cauuet)

After his wife passes away, Antoine discovers that she once had an affair with his sworn enemy, the factory owner he spent his whole life campaigning against for workers’ rights. Grabbing his gun, he sets off in his car on a final road trip to kill him and get a cuckold’s belated revenge – but not if his two besties and pregnant granddaughter can stop him first! 

For a comic about coffin-dodgers, The Old Geezers is a lively affair, especially visually! I absolutely adored Paul Cauuet’s artwork which is nothing short of spectacular and is by far the best thing about this book. I don’t know what it is about French comics but they, seemingly more than any other country, perfectly capture human expression so viscerally. 

The landscapes are stunningly rendered, the colours are amazing and Cauuet makes some inspired scene-setting choices. For example, the storytelling instinct is to focus on who’s speaking but often he’ll put those characters in the background to showcase what’s happening around them and provide the reader with a strong sense of place, context and atmosphere. It’s brilliant! 

Wilfrid Lupano’s script skilfully balances a variety of tones throughout. It’s moving but not grim, sweetly nostalgic but not melancholy, and the book has an appealingly light comedic quality to it throughout. The characters are also very likeable and their friendship was believable. And I really enjoyed Sophie, the preggo granddaughter, going off on the old folks for fucking up the world for her and her kid’s futures - right on, Sophie! “Greatest Generation” my ass!

It’s not the most original story – I can’t put my finger on similar books but I do remember reading stories centred around old affairs being dredged up after a death – nor is it that gripping, but there’s still a lot to enjoy here. The first volume of The Old Geezers is a gorgeously illustrated and entertaining read that’s won me over so that I’ll be back for the next book - recommended!

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