Friday, December 2, 2011

Graphic novel review: kimmie66 by Aaron Alexovich

" it real?"

kimmie66 by Aaron Alexovich
Genre: YA SF mystery
Publisher: DC Minx, 2007

Story: Telly is a normal 23rd century goth teen. She lives most of her life in the virtual world, and who wouldn't? But she's worried about her friend, kimmie66. Kimmie sent Telly a suicide note that couldn't be real, could it? People are still seeing Kimmie all over the net. Telly has never met Kimmie in real life and doesn't know her real name, so she can't find out for sure. Unless she breaks the law.

Thoughts: kimmy66 is much darker than the other Minx titles I've read, both in its theme of suicide and from the black backgrounds used in most of the panels. The artwork is edgy and distorted, fitting with the virtual reality setting. I usually prefer clear and open artwork, but the darker images work to set the bleak tone. The story reminds me of Serial Experiments Lain, one of my favorite animes. Both titles have a sad and eerie feeling, but the scary clowns add an extra creep factor to kimmie66.  I like Telly. She figures things out and questions the status quo. She also has fab messy hair. The everyday use of virtual reality put me in mind of Ready Player One. In fact, both of these books could take place in the same world. The only difference is in Telly's world virtual travel is illegal while for Player One it's just expensive.

Aaron Alexovich contributed character designs to Nickelodeon's Invader Zim, and I recognized his unique drawing style from that show. He also did the art for Minx's Confessions of a Blabbermouth and has his own story, Serenity Rose, from SLG.

Final thoughts: I liked this creepy gothic cyber-mystery. It's a fast read but fun if you don't mind scary clowns.

Grade: 4 out of 5

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