Monday, October 6, 2008

Tommysaurus Rex by Doug TenNapel

I can't make up my mind about this graphic novel. Oh, not about the quality - it's good - but where one would put it in the library.

It's about a boy whose dog is tragically killed. He's going through a rough time just with growing pains anyways, and his parents send him off to his grandpa's farm for the summer. There he meets a nasty bully and makes a marvelous discovery; a tyrannosaurus rex. A live one. At first, the townspeople are terrified, but Ely manages to tame the t. rex, until the bully does something horrible and tragedy ensues. However, there's hope and forgiveness at the end.

There's a lot of layers throughout this story, from the title to the various connections of the characters. There's a couple iffy moments for a younger audience - the grandfather tells the parents to "Go have some sex! Call me when summer's over!" and gives Ely a bottle of beer - which turns out to have been refilled with root beer (yeah, it sounds trivial, but believe me, people will squawk).

Verdict: What's most doubtful to me is where exactly to put this. There's a lot of painful emotions throughout this story and underneath the adventure, gore, and wacky jokes, it's all about growing up and learning to be a man. But it's got all that wackiness on top. So juvenile or ya? Who is the audience for this comic? What do you think?
ISBN: 978-1582403953; Published August 2004 by Image Comics; Borrowed from the library

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