cover image Everything We Miss

Everything We Miss

Luke Pearson. NoBrow (Consortium, dist.), $18 (38p) ISBN 978-1-907704-17-8

Like Kevin Huizenga and Chris Ware, U.K. cartoonist Pearson uses cartoon-faced everymen to explore what it means to try to be human and maintain meaningful relationships in a world weighed down by mundane oppressions. In this surreal, haunting story, Pearson throws in an extra measure of the supernatural to shed light on why we do the dumb things that tear up our lives. An unnamed couple experience relationship problems, but their banal, needless cruelties are seen to be influenced by shadow people, who rise through the house at night, and observed by anurids, insectoid creatures that lurk just out of our eyesight but are addicted to human drama. Using precise layouts and a focused orange, black, and gray palette, Pearson plays out a familiar story with a poetic layer of menace and dark symbolism that adds either a chilling comfort (maybe we’re not entirely to blame for messing things up) or a troubling denial (these mysterious creatures are merely projections of our own shortcomings). Although the story is marred by some undercooked tropes—suicide and a deadly meteor such as the one that struck David Mazzuchelli’s Asterios Polyp—it’s still a devastating story that resonates in the subconscious. (May)