Rain Taxi Review of Good Life

“Seth's It's a Good Life, If You Don't Weaken” / Rain Taxi / David Auerbach / April 13, 2003

The serious comic book artists of today have a strange lineage to face. Superheroes, gag strips, and pornography are not the tradition most artists want looming over their work, but these genres form the backbone of American comics. Most artists, sooner or later, find themselves addressing the peculiar legacy of their medium. Alan Moore and Frank Miller revised and rewrote the superhero genre; Kim Deitch (the brilliant Waldo cycle) and Dan Clowes (Ghost World, Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron) turned the kitsch of their childhoods into moody, nightmarish fantasies. But Seth's It's a Good Life, If You Don't Weaken confronts the emotions behind the pervasive nostalgia. His dominant influence is the gag cartoon of the '50's: the New Yorker style of Peter Arno and his contemporaries, in which cultured urbanites lightly mocked their own class. Seth's style instantly conjures up the understated gentility of those artists, their spare, curved lines and solid gray shading

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