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Eye of the Majestic Creature #2
posted October 21, 2007
 

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Creators: Leslie Stein
Publishing Information: self-published, comic book, 32 pages, 2007, $3
Ordering Numbers:

Leslie Stein is a walking argument for the single-artist anthology comic book, because I think with a vehicle for regular work seen by a lot of people resulting in a reasonably tight and well-informed art/feedback loop, she really might turn into something. This self-published work is classic "the cartoonist has a quality"-level comics, with an odd mix of fantasy, observational drama, blended styles, laconic satire and atmospheric sequences coming together less like a stew and more like a boil. Whether or not you enjoy the experience probably depends on how much you like the majority of riffs and sequences on hand. It fails to come together like more considered, mature work should. A few eye-popping surprises and tonal shifts can spice up a comic; too many and the reader can be slapped and cuffed right out of the reading experience. What makes any struggle worth it is Stein's keen eye for how people settle into space, a kind of agitated discomfit with body and situation that works against an underlying desire to belong and make connections. Her characters make me nervous, and I feel sometimes like I want to put my thumbs on some of them before they flit off the page. I'd like to see issue #3; more than that, I'd like to see issue #10.