Tuesday, June 16, 2009


(From Joe Sacco's The Fixer: A Story from Sarajevo. Click to enlarge.)

Why make this comic, I wonder, after seeing this shaky hand hoping to get down every word. Both panels call out the presence of the reporter: the first his physical presence, the second his mechanical presence, his transcriptional prowess. And there's a third, shadowy presence not represented -- his artisanal presence, his transmutational prowess. After being a "professional," Sacco drew a comic. What can he do with comics that he can't do by refining his prose? He can recreate the furiousness of his own hand and the off-kilter flash of new information. He can poke fun at the cliché that hands are the most challenging part of human anatomy to draw. Hands are the easy part.

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