June 19, 2024

Gabbing Geek

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Bento Review: Put The Book Back On The Shelf


Comic Bento’s theme for the month was “amped,” with everything being connected to music somehow.  Besides being pleased that didn’t mean a Dazzler trade from Marvel, I think I got the most eclectic collection yet.

First up was something from Image called Put the Book Back on the Shelf:  a Belle & Sebastian anthology.  Review after the cut.

Truth be told, this review will probably be pretty short.  See, I suffer from tinnitus.  That’s a nonstop ringing in my left ear.  It means I don’t hear very well, and don’t even realize how loud I am speaking on occasion.  That episode of the podcast I guested on was a minor reminder since I noticed just how freakin’ loud I got as the show went on.

What does that have to do with, oh, anything?  Basically, it means I never really developed much of an interest in music.  I do like a lot of music, but it’s hard to appreciate it the way a lot of other folks do.  Consequently, I don’t think I have ever actually listened to a single song from Belle & Sebastian.  The extent of my personal knowledge on them is that they are a Scottish indy-pop group, and I know that much from the small card Comic Bento sent me.

So, I suspect I perhaps couldn’t enjoy this volume as much as I would have liked to, because I wasn’t sure what songs they were referencing or anything along those lines.

Let’s take this random page:


That’s from a short, charming little story called “Legal Man”.  Is that a song of theirs?  I am guessing it is.  Some of the later dialogue sounds like song lyrics, but not every story in the book did, while others sounded like nothing BUT song lyrics.

I suppose I could look up their stuff, but I have a review to finish!

Anyway, this volume was, as stated on the cover, an anthology of short comic stories inspired by the music of the band, done by a variety of indy comics people.  Some of the stories were quite good, with beautiful artwork and touching stories.  Others were just odd or short or I wasn’t sure what they meant.

At any rate, I spent a lot of time wondering how much of the stories were related to the group’s work.  In fact, as far as I knew, this was Belle and Sebastian:

This is what happens when you had Nickelodeon on cable in the 80s.

So, anyway, good stories and worth a look for that alone.  I am guessing it is more of a treat for fans, but for me, seven out of ten German Shepherd-headed race car drivers out of ten.

NEXT TIME:  Up next is something called Death Sentence from Titan Comics (never heard of ’em).  Apparently, the basic plot is about three people who contract an illness that grants awesome superpowers but then kills the infected inside of six months.  What do you do with great power and six months to live?