Autobiographical comics are a really weird case. An indie comics staple ever since the 1970’s when the burgeoning “comix” scene began to grow and foster itself as a reaction to not only mainstream superhero comics but also large-scale newspaper syndicated strips, On one hand, they can be incredibly boring. Like mind-numbingly so.
Who wants to know about a week in your life where you go to parties and mope and eat Ramen noodles and complain to no one?
Daniel Clowes, I’m looking at you.
At the same though, they can also be incredibly funny and heartfelt, showing people the human side to a story, a community, or an otherwise abstract type of concept we normally wouldn’t think about.
Thankfully, cartoonist/illustrator Adrian Tomine’s little Scenes From An Impending Marriage, a re-release of a minicomic gift he created for his wedding that told the story of his and his fiancee’s preparation for their nuptuals, is in the good side.
I think the reason I like it so much is that it reminds me so much of my own relationship, the way we’ve tackled the preliminary startup of our own wedding planning. The stress, the compromise, the decision-making, and Tomine’s sparse but expressive art depicting him as being pretty “meh” while his now-wife has did most of the work.
Overall it’s pretty cute, a nice little package of a comic/minicomic and autobio story. No self-depracating bullshit, no overwrought drama, just a story about two people slightly overwhelmed as they try to get married. I randomly got this at the bookstore after vaguely recognizing the book from some article on a comics blog, and it was a great decision, one I go back to to reread every so often.