By Brittney MacDonald, Staff Writer
I don’t like the Scott Pilgrim series. I know, I know—it’s amazingly hilarious and filled with whimsy. But that type of humour never appealed to me. That didn’t stop me from picking up a copy of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s new book, Seconds. Unfortunately, I think I liked this one even less. Seconds attempts to capitalize on the magic and humour that made Scott Pilgrim appealing to so many readers, but unfortunately it just comes off as shallow in this one.
Seconds follows the life of Katie, an executive chef at a largely popular restaurant. Just when life is looking up for her, construction, her ex-boyfriend, an injured waitress, and trouble with a co-worker all seem to push her back down. Enter a mysterious yet magical girl who teaches Katie how to go back in time and fix her problems before they even happen. But what happens when Katie tries to fix too much? Life-altering mayhem!
The character of Katie was a big hurdle for me. She is nearly a carbon copy of Scott Pilgrim, just with more jealousy issues and fewer crazy outbursts. If I were to judge by this alone, I would say O’Malley has no idea how to write convincing female characters.
The art is the same as O’Malley’s previous works: simple and cartoony with bold colours. The colour themes sometimes alter to convey emotion: yellow for scared, red for mad, blue for sad. There’s no definition between the background and foreground, and Katie looks like a child throughout the entire novel, even when compared to the other characters.
I think this will probably be the last time I pick up an O’Malley work. Despite his popularity, I can’t recommend this.