Things That Are Awesome: “Pictures of You”
So today I’m going to talk up a webcomic I’ve been reading almost since its inception back in 2007: Pictures of You. If you like webcomics and you aren’t reading this? You should start.
Back when I started reading PoY, I was a few years away from reviving my fiction writing. Now that I’m looking at this comic with my writer’s eye, I am in freaking awe of how much dedication and commitment something like this must require.
Why do I love it so much? I led a fairly sheltered, square life throughout my high school years. I went to an all-girl private school and an all-girl summer camp and my parents were pretty vigilant, so my opportunities for teenage hedonism were rather limited. But when I went to college? It was like that moment in “The Wizard of Oz” when the movie goes from black and white to amazing, vivid color.
Artist/writer Gibson Twist captures this experience perfectly through the eyes of protagonist Peter Morris, and that’s what got me into the comic. What’s kept me reading for ten years are the other characters and the story. Peter’s lucky enough to land a solid group of friends early in his college days. They’re cool and smart and funny and adventurous, and they even persuade him to join their band.
But when that group starts fracturing, it’s believable and heartbreaking, especially if you’ve lived through the same thing happening to your own group of friends. I don’t want to get spoilery, but the comic is subtitled “The Best Friends You’ll Ever Lose” for good reason.
Just so you know, PoY does not pull punches when addressing topics like abortion, domestic violence, mental illness, and suicide. That’s part of why I love it, but it can make for some painful reading. And although most panels are safe for work, the ones that aren’t leave very little to the imagination, so you might not want to catch up on this one at the office.
The next time you’re poking around on Netflix looking for a series to binge watch, why not go in a different direction and binge on another kind of series? I think you’ll be glad you did.