Monday, November 30, 2009
Graphic Novel Monday: I Feel Like a Grown-Up Now, by Jim
I Feel Like a Grown-Up Now: the fifth "Jim's Journal" collection, by Jim. Published 1998 by Andrews McNeel Publishing.
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The author of the Jim's Journal series is actually Scott Dikkers, one of the founding members of The Onion; Jim's Journal is a strip that I first read in college newspapers and of which I quickly became a fan. This latest installment retains much of the charm and zen-like minimalism of previous entries. In this one, Jim is still working at the copy store and still living with his cat Mr. Peterson; what's changed is that he's making a go of married life with Ruth, his sweetheart of several volumes.
The format is always the same; each strip is made up of four panels about half to three-quarters simple line art and a little dialogue and narration. The consistency of the presentation underscores the quotidian rhythm of Jim's life. The story lines are pretty simple- just Jim and his everyday life- going to work, washing the dishes, hanging out with his friends, and contemplating life's big questions in his own way:
"Today," one four panel strip begins, "at the copy store Dan and I were talking. 'There's probably lots better jobs than this,' he said. We sat around and tried to think of better jobs. 'Seismologist!" he said."
Jim's Journal is relatively free of profanity or sex but I think children would have difficulty grasping Jim's worldview; for perspective alone it's best left to adults or perhaps older teens. I really enjoy not only Jim but the little panoply of people in his life- Ruth, Steve, Tony, his coworkers and family- and the quiet and realistic way they and their relationships are portrayed. Definitely not flashy but rewarding nonetheless, Jim's Journal is worth a minute or two of your time.
FTC Disclosure: I did not receive this book for review from the publisher.