ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Low Moon: Deadpan Funny Animals and Existentialism

Updated on December 25, 2011

the Norwegian comics writer/artist known as Jason does not create the most approachable stories out there. There's a certain coldness and detachment to his work, where his funny animal characters barely if ever express emotions and have a tendency to under react to whatever situation he has put them in. Jason rarely gives his characters a happy ending, more often than not ending a story with a sort of existentialist shrug: nothing his characters do actually matters in the grand scheme of things, outside of their own lives (and sometimes not even that much).

And yet. despite the emotional detachment, I find myself tracking his work down, because there is something fascinating about the simplicity of his plots and drawing style (which is a great example of the European "clear line" style that is very distinct from either American or manga drawing styles). This book, "Low Moon," is especially fascinating, as with each of the five stories contained within Jason has given his own twist on a different genre, whether it be the western (the titular story), science fiction ("You Are Here"), or sexual crime drama ("Emily Says Hello," 'Proto Film Noir"). Some of these work better than others, but overall this is a great collection.

The title story is easily my favorite, depicting a typical western set up of troublesome drifter with revenge on his mind coming to town, to be opposed by the sheriff whose confidence was destroyed by their last match. The conceit for this story? Their duel is fought not with guns, but with chess. It sounds silly, but somehow in the context of the story it works. Also great is "You Are Here," about the relationship between a man and his father after his mother is randomly abducted by aliens. We never find out why, and in fact the alien abduction (and the father's plan to build a rocket to chase after her) is just a set up to show how this event affects the man's life as he grows up, gets married, and has a child of his own.

The other stories are all alright, but are not strong as strong as the other two. "Proto Film Noir" is amusing, featuring a cave man and cave woman engaging in an affair who attempt to kill the woman's husband off, only for him to come back from the dead blissfully unaware of what's going on, but it ends on a weird note, as if Jason didn't know how to finish it and just threw in a totally random ending. "&" parallels the lives of two young men, one of whom is trying to steal enough money to pay for an operation to save his mother's life, the other off whom attempts to kill of the suitors of the woman he loves in increasingly ridiculous ways. The thing is, only the story of the man who kills off the other suitors actually goes anywhere, and the story probably would have been stronger had it just focused on him. Finally, "Emily Says Hello" suffers from Jason's unwillingness to explain what's going on. The story, where a man kills people for a woman who then performs sexual favors for him, has no weight because Jason refuses to tell us who the people being murdered are and why the woman wants them to die, meaning that the story has no meaning other than a series of scenes of sex.

However, none of the stories are bad, and all of them feature Jason's beautiful artwork and humorously existentialist viewpoint. If you're OK with a certain amount of emotional distance, check this collection out, as Jason is a modern comics master.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      liam 

      6 years ago

      i respectfully disagree about emily says hello, i feel like the tragedy here is the hitman is playing along in the hopes of getting the girl, in the end, he like the audience is left not knowing what it was all for, just like the hitman. tragedy of the highest order! :) i thought it was quite poingint how these two people both threw away a potential relationship and like most of us we never fully figure out why.

    • Earl S. Wynn profile image

      Earl S. Wynn 

      6 years ago from California

      Sounds interesting! I might have to check Jason's work out.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)