At the End of Your Tether

October 4, 2019

by V. V. Glass, Adam Smith

There’s one word that perfectly summarizes my feelings towards this graphic novel, and that’s confusing. I have no idea what I just read, and despite giving it my best effort there was nothing that explained the complex plot in this book in a way that made it understandable.

The idea is wonderful, the art it great, but the biggest problem here is that the dialogue doesn’t seem to fit with the images, there’s no natural flow between the different frames and it’s impossible to keep up with what’s happening. One moment we’re learning that Arlo has disappeared from her home, but the next frame jumps back in time and without explanation we’re given what appears to be a completely random scene from the past. 

It all starts in the 1st chapter, and I didn’t understand a thing. There wasn’t anything cohesive about the chapter and I actually had to stop and make sure that it wasn’t a case of formatting gone crazy on my computer. The dialogue didn’t match up, and it seemed as if the characters answered the wrong questions. So odd. I still decided to keep reading and I had high hopes for a clear continuation and a common thread that’d bind the story together. For the first few pages I kind of got than, but then it all got super confusing again.

I’m still not sure if it’s a case of pages getting mixed in formatting or what, but none the less, this novel is way too confusing, which is too bad considering the idea is super interesting. At the end I kind of got what was going on and I understood the explanations there, that still didn’t make the all the random frames any clearer though.

A minor detail that also bugged me was how a video game in the beginning had the text Super Nintendo on it, but the console it belonged to was clearly a NES and not Super Nintendo. Like I said, very minor detail, but I love the NES and I can’t help but get bothered by the inconsistency there. 

I’ll still give this graphic novel two stars because if a great concept and beautiful art.

Wrap Up

At the End of Your Tether

  • 2/10
    Overall
  • 2/10
    Plot
  • 3/10
    Art
  • 1.5/10
    Characters
  • 1.5/10
    Ending

Pros

  • Great art
  • Interesting concept

Cons

  • Confusing
  • Non-cohesive

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