Great Holiday Comic
Believe it or not, this topic was the hardest for me so far. I couldn’t think of a single “great comic” that ties in directly to a holiday. Maybe I’m not paying attention? But I did think of a great comic that reminds me of a holiday. And just in time for the day itself — Saint Valentine’s Day! Which is actually tomorrow.
I am talking about the 1990 graphic novel published by Marvel Comics, X-Factor Special: Prisoner of Love. Written by Jim Starlin and illustrated by Jackson Guice.
The book tells a solo tale about Beast, the beastly-looking mutant. Feeling lonely and chased by self-pity, Beast paces the streets of New York. He has a chance encounter with a mysterious young lady with whom he feels an instant connection. And the feeling is mutual. He stays over at her apartment, at which there is no food and almost no furniture. But she manages to make him breakfast somehow. Time starts to play tricks on him, and he doesn’t know how long he has been with his lover. He is simultaneously fulfilled and enervated by the otherworldly beauty. I won’t give away the ending, suffice it to say that “otherworldly” is an accurate description for the situation. Maybe that’s why Beast, the blue-furred outsider, feels so at home with his lover’s soul.
The tale is full of symbolism. Beast’s experience mirrors love’s dual effect: healing deep psychic wounds while also taking possession of one’s being. One is fully present in the moment, and time seems to melt into infinity. Two who are in love are happy and rich, even when food and money are scarce. The empty cupboard easily becomes a banquet.
My sincere wish is that everyone feels this way at least once in their lives.
Tomorrow: Great Plot Twist