Review: Percy Gloom

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Percy Gloom
Cathy Malkasian

Fantagraphics Books
Street: 06.21

Percy Gloom was written by Cathy Malkasian whose previous work as an animator includes the shows Rugrats and The Wild Thornberrys Movie. Her leap from animation to the graphic novel form (especially from those quirky kids’ shows) is not a far cry from her previous work. Percy Gloom tells the beleaguered story of the title’s namesake who just wants to be a safety inspector and prevent people from getting hurt. The story follows the naive Percy as he tries to fulfill his ideal place in the world and on the way find out who he is. Rich duotone print on tinted paper give the story its “gloom” and the eerily sedate lines make for a gratifying contrast from storytelling to graphic representation. Equal measure of illuminating discovery and innocent misstep as Percy explores his surreal surroundings turn Malkasian’s gloom into the reader’s sunshine. –Erik Lopez