In Review: Louis: The Clown’s Last Words

Louis: The Clown's Last WordsCreator: Metaphrog
Publisher: Metaphrog
Web Link: www.metaphrog.com
Graphic album, colour
Louis: The Clown’s Last Words is available on Amazon (Affiliate Link)

The inhabitants of the Hamlet are to take part in a competition to design a game. Louis is excited by the prospect and by the potential opportunity to meet his Aunt Alison at the Fun Day Out, but the Quidnuncs, up to no good as usual, have other ideas! Cheese, clowns, and crazy carrots for all ages!

This is a strange, bizarre graphic novel, just one in a series that has attracted sponsorship from the Scottish Arts Council and high praise from many quarters, on both sides of the English Channel – and the US.

There’s no way you can pigeonhole Louis, an allegorical, haunting series that begins with Red Letter Day and continues with Lying to Clive and this volume, The Clown’s Last Words (Dreams Never Die, a fourth book, has also been released. While the world of Louis – a world where anthromoprhised, distorted and unique creatures are spied upon, terrorised and confused – can be enjoyed as a strange children’s story, the tales work on many levels, which has prompted the attention of critics not normally linked with comics reviews.

The art is child-friendly and accomplished, the colouring simply beautiful and the storytelling – well, unique would be the only word I could use to describe it. Alice in Wonderland, Phillip K. Dick, Wallace and Gromit (on acid, maybe) – such comparisons barely scratch the surface when it comes to describing this fantastical saga.

I heartily recommend checking out the Metaphrog web site if you’re intrigued by this series, which includes some stunning animation and plenty of more information about Louis and other creations.

This is a stunning, ground-breaking comics project that well deserves the attention it has received from many quarters.

John Freeman

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