A Month of Good LGBT Comics – Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic
In conjunction with Prism Comics, the preeminent website for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) comics and creators, every day this month I will be detailing one good comic book/graphic novel with LGBT themes.
Here‘s an archive of the featured works so far!
Today we look at one of the most acclaimed works featured this month.
Fun Home is Alison Bechdel’s powerful memoir primarily about her relationship with her father, who died in an accident (Bechdel believes it was suicide) at the age of 44 soon after Bechdel came out to her family. She soon discovered that her father, himself, was a closeted homosexual.
The book took years for Bechdel to complete, mostly because she was meticulous in her attention to detail (not to mention her methods of drawing people included her posing for each figure).
While the narrative of the book is a strong one (examining the life of her closeted father as she herself awakens to her own homosexuality), the key to this book is clearly the deep, emotional resonance the characters evoke to the reader, which is due to a brilliant piece of characterization by Bechdel of herself AND her father.
The “Fun Home” of the title was the family’s funeral home that her father ran besides his job as an English teacher.
There is no linear plot to the book, as it mostly contains Bechdel reflecting on various points of her life – it is all very powerful stuff.
Here are some sample pages from the site for Fun Home that her publisher put up (check out the page here).
See the impressive way she reflects upon both herself and her father?
The whole book is filled with stuff like that, all with great artwork by Bechdel.
This is truly a masterpiece of comic book literature, and deserves all the acclaim it received (which was a LOT).