Technically this isn’t an ode, since I’m a blogger and not a poet. Though if you read to the bottom you may find a little faux ode just for fun! 😉
(Side note: faux ode = fauxde? I like making up new portmanteaus.)
But, proper ode or not, today’s Fangirl Friday is devoted to singing the praises of my favorite graphic novel series. Like a lot of people, I hadn’t heard of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s Scott Pilgrim graphic novel series until the movie was released in 2010 and quickly became a cult classic. In fact, it was only by happenstance that I even saw it. I’m sure I’ve mentioned it on the blog before, but I’m generally not a fan of watching movies. So, oftentimes, I don’t even know what’s currently in theatres.
At the time (this was a year before I met Dear Fiancé), my (now ex) boyfriend dragged me to the theatre with some of our nerdy friends. His roommate insisted that we just had to see this Scott Pilgrim movie.
What could possibly be worth spending $10 to see in the theatre? I wondered.
Boy were my (non-existent) expectations blown out of the geeky waters!!!
If you haven’t seen it, I’m not sure how much a plot summary here can really do it justice. But essentially, it’s a quirky, fantasy-laden tale about a goofy, ordinary guy, Scott Pilgrim, who falls for a spunky blue haired girl, Ramona Flowers.
Except there’s one little problem… Well, seven problems, to be exact. Scott must defeat Ramona’s seven evil exes to be with her.
The ensuing film is fantastical without relying on fantasy elements for the plot. It is witty without relying on comedic tropes, using instead darker humor that somehow lightens everything up. It involves a love story without ever feeling like a love story. In short, it takes everything I usually don’t like about movies (rehashed punchlines, mushy love triangles, excessive violence), and turns it on its head. The laughs are droll, the romance is far from saccharine, and the violence is cartoonish.
After falling in love with the movie, I immediately went out and read the graphic novel series. Though the plots deviate at a certain point, I was even more enamored with the graphic novels. Bryan Lee O’Malley’s characters are rendered with over-sized, innocent eyes and bobble head proportions, and the lines are haphazard and almost simplistic. This comes at quite a contrast to the darker nature of a lot of the dialogue.
The ex who (thankfully!) dragged me to see the movie bought me the soundtrack for my birthday that year. I think that CD must have played on repeat in my car at the time a zillion times. Filled with upbeat punk tunes, darker rock pieces, and some video game homages to the film, it is an album worth owning if you are a fan of the film.
When I got my Xbox 360, I was quick to download the Scott Pilgrim video game. Set in classic 8-bit style, it’s a seemingly simple side scrolling platformer with music that will make any 90s kid nostalgic. Be warned though, it is not an easy game!
Fast forward to my life with Dear Betrothed. A couple of years ago, I gave him the set of graphic novels for his birthday. And every year at the comic conventions we attend, we have a ritual of cosplaying as Scott and Ramona at least once per con.
One day in 2014, the gods bestowed a miracle upon me and allowed me to meet Bryan Lee O’Malley himself! Unfortunately I had on my Wonder Woman cosplay and not Ramona, but I fangirled so hard! He even complemented my cosplay. I nearly died. 🙂 🙂 🙂
In fact, I’m such a huge fan of Scott Pilgrim that when Dear Fiancé and I got engaged, I drew the comic book story of us in the Scott Pilgrim style. Or at least, that’s the look I was going for 😉
Before I sign off, here’s the silly little faux ode promised:
Oh Scott Pilgrim,
Will you be the cartoon father to my future children?
You are so nerdy, which makes you so cool,
And your blue haired girlfriend really rules.
I wish my life could be a video game in 8-bit
And be just as big of a hit.
(Please do not contain your laughter — it was meant to be dumb, and I am no poet!)
Tell me, if you have seen or read Scott Pilgrim, what did you think? What is your favorite graphic novel?