It’s always disappointing to read a comic book that thinks it’s so much better than it actually is. This is the problem I was faced with as I struggled through Brooke Burgess’s Becoming. The tale is about a college boy who is so convinced that he’s being short-changed out of his education that he confronts his professor over the bad grades he feels he’s being punished with.
In response, the professor decides that he has a real lesson to teach his unruly student. Burgess is clearly intelligent, but the writing on this book is bloated with pretentious swagger that does nothing to mask the fact that this comic is really an excuse for a bit of torture porn.
The art, while having moments of true beauty is mired by pages that look rushed to conclusion. I can only guess that after drawing a book that is for the majority, just one long conversation after another, the artist, Dance Cypel was overtaken by sheer boredom of the task.
The finale comes as no great surprise when it finally gets to the point, but unfortunately I felt I had to read a whole lot of big words just to get there. With chapter quotes taken directly from Radiohead songs and Nietzsche I should have known better. I like dark, intelligent comics, but for now, I’ll stick with Nick Spencer’s Morning Glories.
Becoming will be released by Arcana Studio later in the year