Thursday, February 5, 2009

Rue Morgue Magazine reviews The Hole

Read the (November 2008 issue) review by Pedro Cabezuelo and Paul Corupe below:

The Hole is an ambitious graphic novel that attempts to dispel the popular perceptions of the Voodoo religion while satirizing capitalism, consumerism, racial tensions, black (and white) stereotypes, superheroes and mass media. The plot revolves around Carla Bonte, a middle-aged woman who has created a multimedia empire based on the concept of “hyper voodoo.” However, it appears that Carla is just a pawn of Papa Legba, a multi-faceted Voodoo spirit and trickster who has his own agenda. Though that is a rather gross simplification of a complex story filled with many characters and situations that neatly come together. From the first page, it’s obvious that The Hole is a labour of love for Damian Duffy and John Jennings, and that they are trying to create something of value, not just disposable entertainment. To their credit, they mostly succeed. What could have been an indecipherable mess is surprisingly easy to follow, thought-provoking an imbued with a strong sense of humour that makes the material fun to read. However, those unfamiliar with Voodoo (like most North Americans, I suspect), may have a hard time getting their heads around the characters and concepts. Duffy and Jennings try their best to initiate readers–using essays, notes and a glossary–but most of the material remains complex and hard to understand. A brief history of the religion and Papa Legba in comic form would have helped immensely.

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