Mr. Ray’s Grave Thoughts by M. Pearson
In this comic Mr. Ray is thrown into existential freak-out of grief and horror over his father’s death and the banality of his final words. He hallucinates and smashes up his house, eventually calming down enough to strip naked, walk outside, and begin to transport over vast distances of time and space. The effect is completely startling and unlike anything I’ve read before.
What strikes me is how it pulls off something I don’t think would be possible in a film. Could a grief stricken, nebbish with thick glasses and a big nose, fly off the handle, strip off his clothes and head out to the street in a halucinatory rage be shown on film without an audience laughing their ass off at him? Maybe this is simply because Woody Allen has cornered our expectations for this archetype? Or maybe a cartoonist is able to give pathetic/naked figures a little more dignity when they are drawn rather than filmed?
I’m inclined to give the credit to the artist, but I’m not sure how he did it. The way the comic is put together at the end saps the humor out and when you expect something to lighten up the mood it just doubles down. There is nothing funny about how this comic wraps up - it completely defied my expectations.