Special Birthday Review: Djeljosevic #28A comic review article by: Rafael Gaitan, Nick Hanover, David He, Shaun Spalding
MONTENEGRO/ U.S./ THE STRUGGLE
Seems like only last year since DANNY DJELJOSEVIC #27 left us fingertip hanging during the conclusion of the DjelBROsevic story arc- a bold and thrilling storyline orchestrated by the author’s loosest confederate (and author of this piece) Rafael Gaitan. In the year since, we’ve seen the character of Danny become more prolific in the comics game, with the widely acclaimed The Ghost Engine recently wrapping up as well as full-time gigs as Comics Bulletin’s iron-fisted co-managing editor and in The Real World as An Employee.
#28 packs quite the wallop and is setting some real stems for the future of this series: hinted at for future story arcs are camaraderie, drinking and dancing with friends on Friday, and possibly even an extended-into-the-weekend outing- subject’s choice, of course. Hana and Djoko’s linework and creativity have made DD more than just a young kid from Coconut Creek- previous attempts at breaking out from that mold led to the disastrous Chris Heck series and the rambunctious if not infectious Kevin McMurtrey. For everything that DD does well, including puns, there are still sections that need work- whenever the Human Gollum shows up the audience tends to want to punch him in his fucking mouth and that weird squirrel-voiced thing that elicits involuntary swipes from the audience is getting to be old hat (HINT.) However this is just one stage in what is sure to be many of Danny’s charms and future bits to put on.
Initially I expected more of the same with DD #28 but happy to report that Young Precum (as he once exclusively requested to be called) has had one heck of a year, and with the looming Panic Kids! on the horizon, as well as the introduction of Amy Culley, means that the future’s so bright for young Daniel that he’ll have to throw shade. JK- you know we love you, boo. Happy birthday!
-Danny D (aka Rafael G)
When I first heard of Djeljosevic, I discounted it as flavor of the month garbage. As years went on, everyone I knew was talking about Djeljosevic. Caving in, I had to find out what Djeljosevic was all about.
Mysterious, a little gonzo, quite silly, sometimes charming, and definitely sharp. I was hooked. I couldn't get enough of Djeljosevic. Naturally, as a Johnny-Come-Lately, it took me a while to understand the intricacies of the series. From late-night readings of cheap porno comics to discussions of Jodorowsky, I definitely don't regret getting into Djeljosevic. I don't fully understand Djeljosevic at times, but I'll tell strangers at cafes that I do, in hopes of impressing them.
With new characters and interesting character twists, this coming issue looks like the best yet.
- David H
(cover by Eden Chubb)
Djeljosevic Giant-Sized Annual #28
Having kept up with the events of Djeljosevic unfolding between issues #23-#27, I expect the creative team has been setting up for an exciting new arc.
The writers continue to wow with sharp, punchy dialogue. The artist's attention to detail, with Djeljosevic's colorful, kawii socks, orange denim jeans, and trademark hat still continue to impress.
The only thing I'm not convinced of is the story's increasing meta-elements... Really, how believable it is that Djeljosevic is writing his own successful comics (the Ghost Engine? Panic Kids?). Comic book characters writing comics is the type of insular, snake-eating-its-own-tail navel gazing that is killing the industry!
It's hard to discuss recent Djeljosevic without discussing the rumors that screenwriter Damon Lindelof was set to write a thrilling to watch, (but in the end, unsatisfying) big budget adaptation of the book. Purists may be excited that the studio killed those plans after executives debated Djeljosevic's mainstream appeal.
So it looks like even with the success of this new arc, Djeljosevic is likely to remain a cult classic, loved by some, loathed by others, but true to the charismatic, enigmatic rebel the writers have set him up to be.
Dark Djeljosevic #28
As a kid, I was drawn towards characters that were a lot like me because who doesn’t like to imagine being the center of a story where you solve daily problems with fisticuffs and colorful outfits? But now that I’m “adult” and “mature” I just want to read about different perspectives, like I’m living vicariously not by grafting myself onto bold action heroes with similar looks but by becoming entire new people. That’s why lately I’ve enjoyed the shit out of books like Baller Boisson and Gregarious Garsee, because I’m not a young black man trying to make it on the hard streets of Austin, or a reality tv-obsessed gay guy recently escaped from Beaumont. Still, I can’t deny that for the past several years, all things Djeljosevic have been on the top of my pull pile.
Rebranded with the omnipresent “dark” header, Dark Djeljosevic is really a bit of a misnomer, because the series remains as sneakily humorous and overtly intelligent as always. Yeah, the lead has started going a bit more Morrissey in garb and the hats are more shadowy, and maybe he occasionally throws down an insane head exploding gif or two more than normal, but this is the same Djeljosevic we all know and love, only hardened around the edges. This year alone, we’ve watched Djeljosevic form unexpected alliances with Furious 6 and this brand new arc has him heading towards adventure in Loser City after the conclusion of the epic that was Ghost Engine, and yet he still found time to combat his eternal arch-nemesis, animal by-products.
Dark or otherwise, Djeljosevic is where I turn when I want to be inspired, to see how a real hero of geekdom does things. Likewise, Djeljosevic is where I turn when I want to be reminded of canine themed hits of yesterday for no real reason whatsoever. Basically, what I’m saying is that there’s a little bit of Djeljosevic in all of us and I don’t mean that in the Wobbly way.
- Nicky da H