Mr. Punch

Books: Graphic Novel

Mr. Punch (1994)

Neil Gaiman and Dave McKean

Mr PunchI received Mr. Punch for Christmas. It's been on my Wish List for a couple of years now, but I've never purchased it for myself, because (I'm sorry to say) I'm not that fond of Dave McKean's artwork. I can understand why it's interesting and good, but it simply doesn't do anything for me.

Mr. Punch relates the Punch and Judy story, interspersed with a boy's interaction with the show. Being American and younger than a certain age, I've never seen a Punch and Judy show, although I knew of them. It's funny how things that were watched by children seem too violent to modern eyes--even though these things tend not to bother kids--or at least seem not to have bothered the kids who grew up with them for years and years.

I'm not sure how I feel about it. I know that children are not nearly as innocent as adults think they are, but I do not have children, so I don't think I'm the person to judge what is and is not fit for children. (I will say that it is a parent's right and responsibility to monitor what children watch. But that doesn't mean that adults should have what they read and see censored.)

None of this, of course, addresses Mr. Punch.

It's an interesting story, but I didn't like it nearly as well as other Neil Gaiman works I have read--either novels or comics. The fact that I don't care much for Dave McKean's artwork probably didn't help. Someone that likes Dave McKean's work will probably enjoy this far more than I did. And of course Neil Gaiman fans will want to read this, because we're obsessive and want to read all of Neil Gaiman's work.

Rating: 5/10