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Tag: graphic novel

Daytripper – Graphic Novel annotation

Daytripper is an amazing piece of art. There are many things that we can explore including the art effect of using water color and the existentialist’s theme and what not.

One important thing that impacts me greatly after annotating the graphic novel is that the graphic novel does a better job in expressing emotions that cannot be expressed as words. Some of the annotations I chose would appear funny if they were depicted verbally. Most prominently, quietness is the most well depicted scenario among all the ineffable situations, which leaves the reader plentiful room for personal interpretation. However, this will at the same time unlikely let the reader misinterpret the emotion (unless the creator sucks at drawing) because the readers can absorb other information from the frame or the adjacent frames. A smile, a frown or a distant frame of what is happening tips the reader off about the emotion related to the story, while vividly revokes the reader’s past experience. This is the power of graphic novel (and manga) that enables it to surpass a text-based novel. When someone is reading a graphic novel, the story happens right in front of the reader’s eyes, not in the back of her mind. Lots of things go on without explaining in a graphic novel, just as life goes on without anyone explaining the details. This perk leaves the reader a realistic representation of a life story. My annotations will explicate this further.

The first chapter:


The last scene of the second chapter:


After his wife received the message that her husband is dead in chapter 8:


Chapter 9, after the protagonist wakes up from a long dream:4

The Power of the Background

I had never read a graphic novel until this past weekend. I loved reading Daytripper by Ba and Moon, because it was an easy and short read, but it conveyed so much more emotion than most books that I have read. Discussing the novel in class, the thing that resounded with me the most was the use of vivid colors by Ba and Moon. I noticed that the protagonist, Bras, did not have the most expressive reactions, but the set background is what gave each scenario life. The way that Ba and Moon strategically used the contrast of colors in between scenario or chapters was extraordinary. For example, the author rarely used bright red, but the bar scene in which both Bras and the bartender are shot at point blank is completely red. As a reader, all the red is very overwhelming and really heightens the reader’s senses, essentially transferring the character’s emotions off the page. In the scene, Bras’ face expression is pretty dull, not because he is bored, but because he is basically frozen. The loud red is what reveals that sentiment without needing to overly focus on the face expression of Bras in a graphics perspective.


Another color that Ba and Moon use in transferring emotion is the color black. When there is a lot of black within the scene, Ba and Moon are trying to create a sense of urgency or mystery. The scene where Bras goes to search for his best friend, Jorge, the deliberate black in the scenes reveals desolation and the character’s journey for answers. Jorge had just told Bras that he is going to do something with his life because he is tired of where he is at. Bras immediately hears this and craves the need to try and help him or talk to him. The urgency or desperation in Bras is revealed by the dark color tones as he is driving towards Jorge. These examples demonstrate how ingenious Ba and Moon were in their efforts to making this graphic novel very compelling to the reader.

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Daytripper Blog Post

Gabriel Ba and Fabio Moon’s Daytripper is truly a work of art. It is a meditation on mortality, a book of life lessons, a uniquely crafted biography of an obituary writer named Bras, a roller coaster of emotions, and much more. The graphic novel is broken into 10 important periods, in non-chronological order, of Bras’ life. At the end of each piece Bras always dies in one way or another, be it from a heart attack, a car crash, a shooting, or something completely unexpected like a peaceful ocean ceremony. Below, I recount four quick scenes of the novel.


This scene is taken from the end of chapter 2, where Bras falls in love with a beautiful Brazilian woman while on a trip with his best friend Jorge in Brazil. Strangely enough, Bras was having dreams of a woman that may or may not parallel his love interest before and after meeting her. Here, his dream women his foretelling where his actual love interest wants him to do. Unsurprisingly, he ends up dying on that beach.


This scene is taken from the following chapter, 3. In it, he is shown to have recently broken up with the woman he met in Brazil, and he is heart broken. However, the above picture is part of perhaps the most romantic scene in the book – his “love at first sight” moment. It is also an excellent example of the kind of deeply moving scene that the authors and Ba and Moon are capable of – both in its text and pictures.


Jumping forward, the above scene comes from chapter 6. It depicts probably the most gruesome and surprising scene in Daytripper. Throughout the graphic novel, we discover the depth of the friendship of Bras and Jorge. They spent college together, went on trips together, worked together, etc. When Jorge inexplicably left Bras to go live elsewhere, Bras often wrote postcards to him. Wanting to meet with his friend after being a part for so long, Bras goes out in search of him. After finally finding him, Bras discovers him in a very low place. Jorge then unexplainably murders Bras and commits suicide, apparently out of his very degraded mental state. Daytripper captures the emotions of both characters excellently in the above scene.


This scene comes from the very last chapter of Daytripper. Here, Bras has become very old, and he goes to the beach this night seemingly to take his own life. This isn’t because of any deep depression he was going through; he had spent this day in the loving company of his wife and children. Rather, it might have been triggered by a letter written by his father. In it, his father wrote that he was proud of Bras for not needing him anymore, and that one can only “let go” when one accepts that one will die. Perhaps Bras was finally in the state where he could let go.


Works Cited

Moon, Fábio, Gabriel Bá, Dave Stewart, and Sean Konot. Daytripper. New York: DC Comics, 2011. Print.




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