Last week: Shooting Wars and House of Leaves

The experience of reading the graphic novel Shooting War is not unlike reading House of Leaves.  Though I feel like I should say reading House of Leaves is like reading a graphic novel like Shooting War.  Flipping the book around and being confused about where to read next is part of the process of reading a graphic novel (according to my limited experience reading graphic novels).  There are variations in confusion levels from graphic novel to graphic novel, but readers still expect the multimedia jumble of words and pictures.  Readers of standard novels don’t.

So while reading Shooting War wasn’t a completely mind-blowing experience, it was still fun to enter into the world of the graphic novel.  Being a generally apolitical person, I wasn’t paying so much attention to the politics as much as the plot lines and the stylistic techniques.  I liked the graphic novel’s sense of play:  with images, with text, with photographs, with screen shots, with predictions for the future.

The Shooting War, like House of Leaves, attempts to provide a representation of film through essentially still images, like text and drawings.  To do this, the Shooting War has to find creative ways of slowing down and speeding up time.  Whereas House of Leaves put single words on each page to slow things down, Shooting Wars might feature a single image on a two page spread.  Both House of Leaves and Shooting Wars used timers on cameras to show time.

I haven’t actually finished the graphic novel yet (I’m halfway through), so I’m not sure how the authors plan to end this thing.