Scott Pilgrim's Finest Hour (Vol. 6)

Dear reader, I know that you come to GEEKchocolate in search of intelligent informed review and debate. Thought provoking evaluations that helps you to enjoy your book, film whatever with a depth of appreciation that you never thought possible. The sort of thing that Pixel does so well. You’re smart and clued up. What you don’t want is some slabbering fanboy foaming at the trousers over one of his personal favourites. Well, if that is the case, then the next few hundred words are going to be a bumpy ride for you, because that’s what you’re going to get

Scott Pilgrim’s Finest Hour landed on my doorstep this morning. SCOTT PILGIM 6!!!!!

I’m getting on in years now, mid 40’s and I try to pull off an air of weary insouciance toward new stuff. Been there, seen it and done, twice usually (once three times, but that’s a different story for another time). So there’s not much that gets me genuinely excited these days, apart of course from a new Morrissey release, but hey, that get EVERYONE excited. Doesn’t it?

Maybe it’s been the (justified) hype over the forthcoming movie of the series, maybe it’s been re-reading the first five volumes as release day drew near. Whatever it was,I haven’t been this excited about a comic book since I was ten. I’ve been so moist with anticipation over the past few weeks, it caused problems that strangers in the street commented on. Chafing has been the least of my worries.

For those who don’t know , (and if you don’t why not?) the Scott Pilgrim series follows the eponymous slacker bass playing hero and his battle with the seven evil ex-boyfriends of the girl he falls in love with, Ramona Flowers. That’s pretty much all you need to know in advance before you start on Volume One – Scott Pilgrim’s Precious Little Life.

Writer/Artist , creator Bryan Lee O’Malley’s simple manga influenced style has been the subject of much discussion, many feeling it was too simple and cartoony while others appreciated the skill involved in making such simple drawn characters individual and believable. O’Malley made a decision to draw the series this way, his other work, ‘Lost at Sea’ has a more dramatic, traditional graphic style.

The series was always intended to run over six volumes and that has allowed O’Malley to let the characters, Scott in particular to grow and develop. In fact over the six volumes O’Malley’s artwork and story telling has grown immensely. Although hardly a slouch to begin with the depth and range of Volume Six brings a suitably epic and satisfying end to the saga. There are some awe-inspiring panels in this volume, as Scott takes on the leader of the League of Evil Exes. In other parts he make wonderful use of empty space and in one case gives a totally blank page an emotional charge.

It’s tribute to his story telling skills that he manages to make the final part of the journey both inevitable and exciting. There are some great twists on the way to finding out if Scott and Ramona get it together.

It’s hard to review a book, let alone six volumes without giving away spoilers but I don’t want to spoil a single part of this for those who haven’t discovered the books. A surprising amount of you out in GEEKchocolate world, if my quick poll of comic reading friends is anything to go by. I don’t understand why, though. Scott is cool, has a video game inspired life, has hot comic girlfriends and is as cool a comic book character as I can think of. The stories are funny, emotional with well drawn believable characters. It’s about growing up and is done with a style and wit not often found in the comic world. Remind me again – Why haven’t you read this?

So all in all, the final volume satisfies in just about every way possible. Great artwork, great story telling, loose ends all tied up. Some wonderful background humour (someone watching from the crowd updates a characters Wikipedia page as they do battle, for instance) There are more great ideas in one page of Scott Pilgrim’s Finest Hour than there are in just about every graphic novel I’ve read in the past five years. It is that good!

So go out there and find it if you haven’t already. If you have then you don’t need me to tell you. All you need to know is that Volume six delivers and then some.

Roll on the film. This will be THE comic book adaptation of the year. It will kick Kick-Ass’s ass.

Rating: pure, unadulterated 85% cocoa GEEKchocolate



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