A week or two late, but I'll blame that on Amazon's shipping, non-existent e-mail replies, and my day job... Anyways! It's finally here, the sixth and final issue of Bryan Lee O'Malley's beloved (and somewhat over-hyped, just saying) comic series, Scott Pilgrim. What will become of your favorite characters? Will Scott defeat the last evil ex? WILL I WRITE SPOILERS?! NO! ... continuing...
Scott Pilgrim's Finest Hour takes more or less directly after the events of Scott Pilgrim Vs. The Universe, with Ramona mysteriously vanished, Scott in his new apartment, and Kim Pine away with her parents; oh, and the last evil ex, Gideon Gordon Graves, constantly stalking Scott both consciously and subconsciously. But despite all this, Scott insists on waiting in his bed/couch, and playing on his PSPgo (gross). Eventually he must learn to man up, confront his demons, and find the girl he loves, and so on.
All in all the story work well and sums up all the characters quite well as there's pretty much a clear explanation as to what everyone ends up doing with their lives, it's not open ended like Lost or anything. However, I will say that the pacing was a bit off. It felt like nothing was really happening in the first few chapters, just meeting up with characters in an uninteresting fashion, and the just suddenly breaking out into all out action come the end. To be honest, the pacing was almost like the first book, and you'd think something like that would be adjusted after six years.
After re-reading my past reviews, and looking back, sometimes I wonder what the hell I was talking about. In this case, I find that O'Malley's writing really hasn't changed all that much from book to book. Sure there's humor, generally nerdy, hipstery, gamer based humor, and most of the time it's relatable and funny, but on its own the wriing doesn't really shock and awe, and the ending is very predictable.
Having said that however, I still enjoyed reading this book, and being the longest issue of the series, I'll admit there were moments where I wished it just would end; to the point that I'd just re-read pages to prolong the whole experience. I look forward to whatever Bryan Lee O'Malley does next, but I just hope it's once again not more of the same.
However, unlike the writing, O'Malley's artwork has changed significantly since the series started. Generally, most comic artists are working of monthly series so they're constantly developing their style, to the point where you probably don't even notice. With a once a year series like Scott Pilgrim though, the change from year to year is drastic. It wasn't as noticeable in the first three issue, but by this sixth volume, some of the characters look completely different.
And while I fell in love with the original character designs, I've grown to like these newer, over-simplified designs, as well as the more apparent use of half-tones, despite being a bit iffy on the designs when O'Malley revealed the first preview images from the book. Plus, I can actually tell Scott and Young Neil apart now!
With a movie releasing this week and a game releasing... well, yesterday to be exact, it's clear that Scott Pilgrim has definitely become a mainstream icon that goes beyond the indie comic series that used to be loved by only a few. But, when it's all said and done, this book was made for the people that cared for the series before all that, and I think the story and characters have gotten the send off they deserve. What becomes of the franchise now is anyone's guess, because there's definitely going to be a division of those that fell in love with the books, those that only know it as a film, and even a select few that only know the game. However, at this point, the proof is in the print, and reading Scott Pilgrim's Finest Hour is truly the ultimate experience, even if there are some hitches.
Overall Score: 9.3/10
Forgot what happened? Check out my reviews for Scott Pilgrim volumes 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5!
For more on Scott Pilgrim visit: scottpilgrim.com
For more on Bryan Lee O'Malley visit: radiomaru.com