Mercury Lounge

Posted: Tuesday, April 4, 2006
By: Steve Saville

Cover of Mercury Lounge Creator(s): Marcos Perez
Publishers: Cliffface Comics (Self Published)
From: USA
Price: $2 (US)

I first came across the comics of Marcos Perez in his ongoing "soap opera in a comic" called Tear Stained makeup. There, as in here, he displays an ability to visually capture the frailty and insecurity of the contemporary urban adult.

The focus in this nearly wordless mini comic is on the first spark of love. I say nearly wordless because there are actually two words spoken in the 57 frames that make up this nineteen page mini comic.

This is a gentle, romantic tale of seeing, falling and farewelling love as the main character, a twenty something male, meets his mates outside the Mercury Lounge, a live band venue. He sees and is smitten by a young woman also attending the gig and the comic traces the progress of their rudimentary friendship. Perez keeps it real by making this developing romance clumsy, confused and ambiguous. In the end we are left feeling as unresolved as the protagonist.

It is a bitter- sweet tale, equally sad and romantic and all the more touching for it. The poignant facial expressions are used with a delicate sensitivity and the comic overall makes you feel good and sad at the same time. It is, in fact, a fairly realistic portrayal of the initial rush of infatuation.

Essentially this pocket- sized comic is a slice of life story looking at one brief moment in two characters lives. Not necessarily original, not necessarily important but touching just the same.

As it is a wordless comic [or nearly wordless] Perez must skilfully employ well- chosen symbols and facial expressions. He does both and as a result has created a gentle but still moving [in a sentimental kind of way] comic. He tells a tale about an ordinary guy who falls in love at first sight with a vision from across an urban landscape only to see the hope of romance end with the closing of the nightclub, and haven’t we all been there.

In a Word: Gentle.

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