Love Stinks? Bastien Vives’ “The Butchery”


Ryan C.'s Four Color Apocalypse

Crucially, in an extended scene that features a couple playing a game of ping-pong both literally and metaphorically, Bastien Vives fixes his focus solely on the man — not just what he’s doing, but what he’s saying, how he’s reacting, what he’s feeling. The woman, however, is both silent and invisible — and compared to the treatment women receive from the cartoonist in the rest of The Butchery (originally released in its native France in 2017, newly available in an English language edition from Fantagraphics with translation by Jenna Allen), trust me when I say this is a kindness. It’s better not be featured at all than it is to be depicted as, by turns, an unknowable mystery and a frigid, uncommunicative bitch.

Vives drew some heat for the rather “male gaze-y” nature of his recent collaborative graphic novel The Grand Odalisque, but it’s hard to say which…

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One response to “Love Stinks? Bastien Vives’ “The Butchery”

  1. Pingback: Lisa Marie’s Week In Review: 9/20/21 — 9/26/21 | Through the Shattered Lens

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