Scott Pilgrim Gets It Together by Bryan Lee O'Malley

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Scott Pilgrim Gets It Together by Bryan Lee O'Malley

Category: Graphic Novels
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Dan Hooper
Reviewed by Dan Hooper
Summary: The Scott Pilgrim books are not the most beautifully illustrated graphic novels - they essentially are an Americanised attempt at the Japanese anime style - but they are amusing stories that don't care for plausibility. The central romance between Scott and Ramona is very sweet but not too sugary: essentially, it's a love story for geeks.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 216 Date: November 2007
Publisher: Oni Press,US
ISBN: 978-1932664492

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The Scott Pilgrim graphic novel series has slowly but surely been building up their own little cult over the last few years and it's not hard to see why. Drawn in a crude but effective black and white anime style, these pop culture and video game literate books have a geeky appeal, being a delirious mix of a sci-fi love story and coming of age tale, featuring a great ensemble of characters and having a tendency for breaking into anime style OTT battles. And with an adaptation to film soon by the very cool Hot Fuzz and Shawn of the Dead director Edgar Wright, this series seems set to burst out of its niche bubble.

At the centre of the complicated story is the titular protagonist Scott, a twenty-three year old stuck in adolescent bliss, a jobless and aimless but wholly likeable character that is endearing despite his flaws. Set in Toronto, Scott is set with the task of defeating his girlfriend Ramona Flower's 'seven evil exes'. Meanwhile, Scott's band Sex Bob-omb are struggling to take off and he is being stalked by his seventeen year old ex-girlfriend Knives Chau, an Asian Canadian obsessed with him and his band. Oh, and did I mention that Ramona is a delivery girl who can travel through space and time?

The fourth and latest book in the series Scott Pilgrim Gets It Together is the most enjoyable so far, managing to fuse together the many disparate elements of the plot more effectively than previous efforts. Scott is being evicted from his flat and is having communication problems with Ramona: it's time for Scott to grow up and get a job but not without disruption from another of Ramona's evil exes and Knives Chau's samurai father.

For the first time in the series there is use of colour in the opening of the story before continuing in black and white: though not especially relevant to the story, it's a nice touch for the fans. Part of the charm of the Scott Pilgrim series is the time it makes for neat detailed asides from the narrative, like guitar tablature for one of Sex Bob-omb's tunes or a vegetarian meal recipe, and Gets It Together includes a receipt from Scott's trip to the grocery store and frames showing the contents of Scott's pockets.

For the geekier among the fan base, there are video game references permeating the narrative, with the use of a bizarre role playing game dream sequence, and experience point power-ups for Scott. These touches are wonderfully fresh in the graphic novel medium, giving the books a hyper real quality, though this may not appeal to everyone.

The Scott Pilgrim books are not the most beautifully illustrated graphic novels - they essentially are an Americanised attempt at the Japanese anime style - but they are amusing stories that don't care for plausibility. The central romance between Scott and Ramona is very sweet but not too sugary: essentially, it's a love story for geeks.

If you haven't read any of the series then I definitely recommend starting from the first book, as there is a lot to take in (if you want to be foolhardy and jump in, there is a 'handy guide' to Scott Pilgrim at the beginning of Gets It Together), but for fans this marks another wonderful addition to the series.

Buy Scott Pilgrim Gets It Together by Bryan Lee O'Malley at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Scott Pilgrim Gets It Together by Bryan Lee O'Malley at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy Scott Pilgrim Gets It Together by Bryan Lee O'Malley at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Scott Pilgrim Gets It Together by Bryan Lee O'Malley at Amazon.com.


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