Written & Illustrated by Jeff Lemire
Lettered by Sean Konot
Published by DC/Vertigo
In Jeff Lemire’s first book from Vertigo The Nobody, he appropriates the protagonist of H.G. Wells’ The Invisible Man to explore a theme obviously dear to Lemire, the interconnectedness and occasional small-mindedness of small towns. John Griffen, bandaged head to toe, arrives in Large Mouth, where everyone knows everyone, checks into the local hotel and stays to himself.
Lemire explores Griffen’s tenuous friendships and the community’s complicated sense of acceptance and respect for privacy against a simultaneous and conflicted urge to question this stranger in their midst. Like his Essex County books and his Vertigo serial Sweet Tooth, Lemire’s The Nobody moves slowly, contemplatively, focusing on the small moments in ordinary lives.
With his rough-hewn artwork, Lemire captures the worn-in quality of Large Mouth and its residents, and his natural dialogue draws readers into their lives quickly. The characters aren’t the deepest you’ll meet, but Lemire provides a range of personalities, and the major players have a few wrinkles to keep them interesting. The haunting plot pulls readers in, and everything builds to a tragic, and effective climax. The Nobody‘s another worthwhile offering from a cartoonist with a talent for mood and small-town exploring.