cover image How to Talk to Girls at Parties

How to Talk to Girls at Parties

Neil Gaiman, Fabio Moon, and Gabriel Ba. Dark Horse, $23.99 (64p) ISBN 978-1-61655-955-7

Gaiman’s Hugo-nominated short story gets a graphic adaptation ahead of a planned cinematic one, and Ba and Moon (Daytripper) deliver exquisite art that elevates the tale’s surprisingly mundane premise. Transparent author insert and clueless straight-coded teenager Enn accompanies his pal Vic to a house party, during the course of which he meets three young women. It’s clear that the women aren’t merely “tourists” in the terrestrial sense; they’re otherworldly and extra-dimensional, sent for various nebulous purposes to Earth. While Enn has his horizons (literally) broadened, Vic attempts to sleep with a fourth woman, only to have his amorous intentions (equally literally) blow up in his face. Gaiman works from a questionable, adolescent premise: what if women seem so alien because they’re really from another planet? With no resolution beyond Enn’s nice-guy stroll into the sunset and Vic’s punishment for cliché machismo, the real fun here is in the art: striking linework, breathtaking watercolors, and creative incorporation of text elevate the story considerably. (July)