Scenes from an Impending Marriage: A Prenuptial Memoir
Written & Illustrated by Adrian Tomine
Published by Drawn & Quarterly
Adrian Tomine’s Scenes from an Impending Marriage was born as a wedding gift, a token given to the guests at he and his wife’s nuptials. As such, it’s fairly innocuous. And you can’t really blame Tomine for that – that’s the inherent problem with a gift for a hundred or so people with a thousand different interests. It’s hard to find something for everyone, so you keep it basic. Innocuous.
Which isn’t to say Scenes from an Impending Marriage is bad. It’s not. It’s decently funny, with scenes that anybody who’s been married (went through it myself last April, so it’s quite fresh) – or known someone who’s been married – can easily relate to. Tomine provides a few good lines, grits his teeth in frustration and rolls with the punches in the same way my wife and I did, and the same way every other couple in ceremonial marriage history has done. It’s effective and cute, and certainly very well drawn – the loose quality of the art makes for a much livelier book than any of Tomine’s others – but it’s not an essential piece of a strong cartoonist’s canon.