February 18, 2009

Even just the cover is awesome.

So, along with Retro Game Challenge (which I would expect a review ramble of… oh… tomorrowish.) I finally got my paws on Scott Pilgrim Vs The Universe last Friday. Ah, it is a wonderful thing, even without flipping it open. The cover is super-foil-y and neat, and the back cover has these “screenshots” of the Scott Pilgrim “game.” It’s nice.

The story inside is nice, too. There be spoilarz going forward, though. Not huge ones, but, you know, just in case, wait until you get to read it.

–This is the SPOILAR line.–

The book is going in a different direction. Pre-me-getting-my-copy reviews I read suggested that this book takes a much more emotional turn than previous, and that the fights are much less a focus because it’s already been established that there is no way Scott can lose. This is pretty much accurate. All but the final fight scene are mostly just in the background while other characters talk. I am totally and completely okay with this. I love the game references, I love the action, but all that wouldn’t make Scott Pilgrim as awesome as it is. It’s a great series because it has emotion and romance things underneath its silly exterior. It really comes out and shines in this book.

Talking Time favorite Kim Pine plays a very big role in this one, too. There are some revelations about her motivations that sort of caught me off guard. Maybe because it’s been too long since I read the first four. But it was just shocking at first: it all makes perfect sense. The plot is making really good sense! And I can’t wait to see the ending.
It is sad that there’s so little Wallace, though. He is just hilarious. His comment of “Hey, it’s that guy” at the end of the first volume is what made it completely clear that I was going to be a huge fan of this series. His role gets more toned down now, though. It makes sense. Things are more emotional than funny. But it’s still unfortunate.

It was also decently tugging at the heartstrings. Seeing Scott lash out at people is silly and fun, but is just so… representative of what he’s going through. He’s not the brightest guy. He very much wants to fix things. He was trying the method in the last book, of getting a job and becoming, you know, and adult. But even that suddenly becomes not enough in this one. All he knows how to do is fight, so he’s desperate to and sure that will fix things. You gotta feel for him.

People have been saying that this is good, but not the series at its best. I don’t really think that’s the case. In volume four, the series took a very clear emotional and focal shift, and this is just the result of it. I suppose if you got into the series for wacky action, you’d be disappointed a bit? But if you got into it for that, and stayed for the relationships like me? You’re going to be very interested in this volume. Very.

Reading it does make one thing clear, though: I need to reread the whole series. I’ll put it off until after Essner gets to read this one, though, so I have more people to discuss it with. I also need to force Spaeth to steal my copies and read them… yep.

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