Comic Book Galaxy: Rabagliati’s “touch of a master.”

Comic Book Galaxy: Rabagliati's "touch of a master."

From Comic Book Galaxy    |    Alan David Doane    |    May 2, 2003

Rabagliati's style is wholly Canadian in mood and tempo -- relaxed, as I said earlier, but keenly observant and generous in its level of detail. I've never been to a summer camp, but we experience everything Paul does, from the sparkling lake waters to the dizzying heights of his first rock climbing experience. Perhaps most evocative is the scene in which Paul, by now fully alive for perhaps the first time, describes for a blind girl the mountains before the two of them:

"Behind the lake there's a dark forest, pine and spruce. And then there are mountains, one behind the other like pieces of cardboard, and they get paler the farther you look."

It's a brilliant sequence, perfect in every way. It's how I see the mountains where I live. The way Paul shares this with the young blind girl, Marie, is heartbreaking and uplifting at once, transforming both of them and the reader as well, putting all three of us a little more in touch with our humanity. It is, finally, one of the most devastatingly effective moments I have ever experienced in any artform, and one I'll remember every time I look toward the mountains.

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