I’ve seen Kate Beaton comics throughout the internet before, and I’ve greatly enjoyed them. On my library display, someone had emblazoned Hark! A Vagrant and Step Aside, Pops, so I thought I could use a little literary nerdy fun in my life. It’s clear that Beaton put her history degree and art/museum acumen to good use in her comics, and we are all the better for it.
Beaton gets me. There’s just no other way to say it. She makes bountiful history jokes, literary panels, and jabs at Canadian culture (she herself is from Nova Scotia). There are abundant panels about the Brontes and their work (never amiss), revolutionaries, suffragettes, and medieval culture. The “Nemesis” series are some of my favorites. I love, love, love the Nancy Drew cover histories that she draws—as a reader of the series growing up, I sometimes found the covers silly and over-the-top, and so, Ms. Beaton’s humorous take-down really tickled me.
But nothing, and I repeat, nothing, tops “Anne of Sleeves” for me. As a kid, I read Anne of Green Gables to pieces, and I wondered how gorgeous her dress would be, based on Anne’s ravings.
And then, I watched the mini-series.
I totally get why Marilla was huffy and indignant about them. They are majestically hideous. Beaton nails her skepticism.
Seriously, though, if you find yourself a lover of literary and historical jokes, you should definitely check out this collection. My husband shook his head at my hearty chuckling, but enjoyed the humor, too. I seriously want ALL of the Kate Beaton comics now.