GEEKROCKER REVIEW: Delphine by Richard Sala
Richard Sala's twisted horror is more than a mere nod to children's fairytales
American cartoonist and illustrator Richard Sala's latest work, 'Delphine', oozes with delectable references to fairytales of old intertwined with a modern indie tale of separation, yearning and romance.
Wasting no time, we're plunged into the world of an unnamed traveler searching for his lost love, Delphine. Eerie characters and bizarre creatures accompany him as he tries to find his beau. Flashbacks of his time with Delphine punctuate as the story progresses and it's revealed that they met in college but Delphine left suddenly, leaving only an address on a piece of paper and it's this address that leads the young traveller on his quest to find his princess. There are comparisons to Snow White dotted throughout the story but Sala's indie-goth execution tinged with a 70s horror atmosphere make for a much more interesting tale. Imagine Snow White plunged into the world of Wickerman; what is seemingly an innocent quest to find the girl, quickly switches from innocent fairytale to twisted nightmare.
There are moments when the traveler's dream sequences of Delphine slip a little into 'indie schmindie' territory a la '(500) Days of Summer', which can at times seem a little saccharine and passé. However, this is a minor criticism as Sala, overall, combines fairytale-like dreaminess with a sinister atmosphere, which is simply a joy to read.
'Delphine' is arguably Richard Sala's darkest tale to date and a brilliant gateway for those new to his whimsical storytelling style.
Delphine by Richard Sala is available now via Fantagraphics