cover image Parasocial


Alex De Campi and Erica Henderson. Image, $18.99 (128p) ISBN 978-1-5343-9937-2

De Campi and Henderson follow up Dracula, Motherfucker with a tragicomic psychological thriller about the perils of D-list fame. Luke Indiana, an arrogant struggling actor best known for playing an android in the later seasons of a cult sci-fi show, is on his way home from a convention appearance in San Antonio when his car crashes. He’s rescued—or kidnapped—by Lily, an obsessive author of Luke Indiana fan fiction. No one familiar with Misery will be shocked by the turns the plot takes as Luke tries to charm and manipulate his way out of Lily’s clutches, but De Campi and Henderson’s fluency in contemporary fan culture seeds the narrative with creepy humor and plausibility. The self-referential story splices in social media posts, commentary from opinionated fanboys, a running soundtrack, and other pop-culture detritus. Henderson switches up art styles and color schemes to visualize the characters’ wildly shifting perspectives; when Lily is momentarily dazzled by Luke, for example, the panel suddenly changes to manga-style fan art. The result is a tense and wickedly funny dark ride through the horrors of toxic fandom. (Oct.)