Graphic Novel Review: Lenore: Swirlies

(Titan Books)

IF you like your humour straight from the grave, then the adventures of everyone’s favourite cute little dead girl (inspired by the eponymous character from Edgar Allan Poe’s poem Lenore) are probably just on the right side of morbid to keep you laughing.

Roman Dirge’s celebrated creation returns here in a fourth collection of stories featuring her fellow residents of Nevermore, including sock puppet stalker Mr Gosh, stuffed deer head with legs Taxidermy, and cyborg mortician Mortimer Fledge, in stories which are definitely not for the squeamish.

Whether it’s killing off all of the other guests at a “Birfday Party”, encountering a hair-dwelling hobo, searching for a Valentine’s Day nard (sic) or revealing the shocking secret of her rebirth, Lenore remains as delightfully dark and surreal as ever.

It has been a long time since the last Lenore volume, with this latest collection including issues 11-16 from her comic series, but it’s been well worth the wait and hopefully previous books will be reprinted in the same format soon.

Dirge’s sense of the bizarre and twisted certainly hasn’t been tamed in the interim, with his creation coming across as the Frankenstein-style offspring of Charleses Adams and Schulz, living in a world which blends gallows humour with cartoon cuteness to produce comics quite unlike anything else on the marketplace.

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