Preview: Red-Colored Elegy

March 25, 2008

I have a deadline coming up, for a long essay on Drawn & Quarterly’s Summer ’08 release of Seiichi Hayashi’s Red Colored Elegy (“Sekishoku Erejii”), now open for preorder. The book, first serialized in GARO from 1970-71, far outstrips contemporary U.S. undergrounds in narrative sophistication. It focuses on a young couple living in sin, but the action’s all in Hayashi’s oblique storytelling and graphic range. Its appearance in English is some kind of milestone, and D&Q’s edition is a good one. To whet your appetite, links & images:

First, Seiichi’s bio on D&Q’s maddening web page.

Second, YouTube video of the hit song inspired by the comic. I weep nostalgic tears for the Showa Era, thanks to Morio Agata’s haunting melody.

Finaly, a handful of (grayscale, sorry) pages from the Japanese edition, showing Hayashi’s range, storyboard-like layouts, and Tsuge influence:

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