Enter the Hero
I don’t care who you are or what your background is, you’ve been a exposed to bullying at some point in your life. Even if you’ve never been bullied directly, you were probably a witness it or possibly even been the perpetrator. I’m here to tell you, from those who have been bullied, we would dream of rescue. We would dream of someone swooping in at the last minute to deal justice to those who were heavy-handed in their teasing.
What does this have to do with comics? Quite a bit actually.
I recently came across a comic strip called The Bully’s Bully and from first click, I became an instant fan.
The Bully’s Bully is a large format, comic book muli-panel style strip. It is created by a writer/artist duo Courtney Huddleston (not a girl) and James Taylor (not the singer) and it follows a young girl who comes to the rescue of those who are being victimized. That’s it. Doesn’t sound very interesting. In fact, the synopses rings out like any number of action movies and comic story lines that have hit our eyes for decades.
But that’s wrong.
This hero, who is nameless except referred to as “BB” in the description, rescues those victims without a single weapon or violence on her part. No knifes, gun, ropes, just her shear tenacity, courage, and pure empathy for those being victimized – and a few well placed defensive moves on her part. She tends to use the bully’s own weaknesses to defeat them and helps the victims who range from little boys, to Girl Scouts, to puppies. But that is just the start of what intrigues me.
The strip has no dialog. Yep. Not a single speech bubble anywhere, and this is right up my alley because I am a lazy, lazy, lazy reader. The storytelling is all done through it’s exquisitely executed black and white pages. Everything, and I mean everything, from it’s panel layouts, scene blocking, penciling, and inking is done to perfection. The artwork is clean, tight, and beautiful drawn and, though there isn’t a single word uttered, Courtney and James both created this strip so you understand exactly what is being said, felt and conveyed without a single verbal explanation.
The stories are broken into chapters, 3 chapters since the start of the strip in December 2012. There seems to be a concern on the creator’s side that the storylines take forever to get to the “action” but I think the pacing is perfect. Without words, you have to rely on the visuals to set the story up, get the plot moving, and build suspense. They manage to do this very well just as it is.
The strip can be found at www.bullysbully.com and is updated Mondays and Wednesdays. For those who have been bullied, are being bullied, or even bully’s themselves, check it out.