The Muse Review
The Muse is the story of Vidal Balagueris a struggling artist, who is in mass amounts of debt to various people and as the story is being told under investigation for the murder of the woman who served as his muse for one of his popular pieces. I am not the biggest fan of books related to art in general but I can still appreciate them. I know for a fact there had to be various art references interwoven into this that went over my head, though, I do like the few that I was able to understand. I love how the artist uses color to convey meaning and emotion and how the line of reality and imagination is crossed at times.
At times I was not the biggest fan of the art style, though am not exactly why, but I understand that is more a personal preference . Overall though I really enjoyed it and since art style is a major deal breaker for me when it comes to graphic novels , the art for this was really well done.As to the actual story,there are layers of mystery and a bleeding of what is real and what is just whimsical story telling. There are heavy themes borrowed from The Picture of Dorian Grey bleeding through. For me that is a good thing since I love any sort of media that references that in some way even if at times it can come off as cliched at this point . Felt overall that this graphic novel put good spin on it. I really enjoyed the way the muse written in this work. She is both something to be adored and marveled at and at times feared as well because of the power she holds. Like so many muses , she is both inspiration and obsession and think this work walks a fine line of showing both those paths.
The best part of this graphic novel would have to be the ending more so because it can be taken in a few different ways . Personally I am big on open endings or endings that can be taken in more than one.way. I like that by the end there lots of questions that there are really no easy answers to. If taken one way can be like it was a wonderful case of magical realism.Toward the end it is revealed that maybe the main character can make different objects and people disappear by painting them , though a clear cut of when this "power" started is not really given since he artist himself has clear cases of things he painted that are still around. If you take away these elements and take the story at face value it is a sad road of a man in debt who was obsessed with his muse . Maybe the real explanation is that both the magical and mundane are the answers.The the graphic novel provides evidence for both possible outcomes.On one hand something sad and morbid and another ending that is more happy and hopeful. Either way it was nice to see. Overall think this was really well done. The art was beautiful and eye-catching, even if it was not always to my personal taste and the story was interesting and fun to read.
*I downloaded a free copy in exchange for a honest and fair review.