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Environment, collapse, climate …: 5 back to school comics on the theme of ecology

Environment, collapse, climate …: 5 back to school comics on the theme of ecology

Each year, as the ecological threat becomes more pressing on Earth, the environmental theme becomes more important. Coming back to school in 2021, comics are no exception. Here are 5 albums to discover, for all ages and in all styles, to get around the question.

the great deer – Gaétan Nocq

Faithful adaptation of the eponymous novel by Claudie Hunzinger, winner of the December Prize in 2019, this sublime and imposing comic follows the return to nature, in the forests of the Vosges, of Pamina and her companion Nils. Isolated, they will gradually get to know the large deer which, sometimes, let themselves be observed. The remote encounter with these majestic animals will also be that of the surrounding nature, full of charms and mysteries. But this enchanting space is threatened by another horde, that of hunters and foresters, whose work is undermining the wild life, inexorably doomed to disappear.

In sublime tones, between midnight blue and American night, the author, with his talents as a painter and bookmaker, brings this nocturnal fauna to life without worrying about the formats, in the same atmosphere close to the thriller as that of the novel.

Here, it is the sad decline of what nature can still offer, without going to the other end of the globe, of enchantment and change of scenery, that the reader will discover, not without a twinge of the heart.

Large deer, by Gaétan Nocq, 224 p., editions Daniel Maghen.

Catastrophobes – Tronchet

As a real jack-of-all-trades, Tronchet tackles this time the very current subject of the ecological crisis, but always with his offbeat humor, both tender and acerbic. With this volume 1 of the Catastrophobes, Laughs with the end of the world, the father of the hero Jean-Claude Tergal this time passes his messages through a couple, aware of the great collapse which threatens our world a little more every day. But, like the many opinions and points of view expressed in our society, neither has an identical opinion on the attitude to adopt in the face of this tragedy. Denial, derision, withdrawal into oneself, militancy, intransigence? …

Through the eyes of these two characters, it is our collective inability to react and take the necessary measures in the face of a situation that we can no longer deny that the author brings to light. With a sense of humor that now seems to be able to offer a certain distance, so as not to sink into depression. Tronchet does not elude any problem, however, and the album also benefits from the preface by Pablo Servigne, one of the figures of the concept of collapsology.

The catastrophobes, de Tronchet, 64 p., editions Fluide Glacial.

selma – old man benedict

Obviously, when we talk about the environment and the preservation of the world, it is difficult not to think of the younger generations, who could well become, by dint of speeches and images on the current situation of the planet, the eco-warriors of tomorrow . Very in tune with the prevailing discourse on responsibility and the lack of initiatives of the post-war generations and baby boomers, the author features little Selma, 10, who is trying by all means to convert his parents to his eco-responsible lifestyle.

Through multiple scenes of our daily life (sorting garbage, overconsumption, recycling …), Benoît Vieillard humorously deals with almost all the themes that have a link with ecology. It is also impossible not to think of Greta Thunberg. Selma shows in any case in each of the boxes as much energy as the Swedish activist. With a watchword: we are all responsible, but every daily effort is worth doing, with effects that are sometimes felt on the other side of the planet.

Selma, Planet Blues, by Benoît Vieillard, 48 p., Soleil Pop editions.

The white whale of the dead seas – Wellenstein / boiscommun

To explain our current world and the dangers that man poses to it, what better than a projection into the future, with a few touches of the fantastic? This is what Aurélie Wellenstein offers, with the designer Olivier Boiscommun (Troll, Le Règne, …). The novelist takes up the universe she described in her book Dead Seas, describing a planet Earth on which men have ended up destroying and drying up seas and oceans, causing an invasion of soul-devouring ghosts, ancient aquatic creatures determined to take revenge.

We thus follow the hero Bengal, in a post-apocalyptic Paris and subjected to the hordes of vengeful specters. There he will meet Chrysaora, a dancer who has taken refuge with other artists at the Opéra Garnier, including a conductor who is desperately trying to recover his son’s soul.

Through this very original story, Aurélie Wellenstein wanted to take a stand from the point of view of the animal kingdom, and the spirit of vengeance that could legitimately inhabit it in the face of the damage that man inflicts on it. To heighten awareness, she deliberately chose aquatic animals, whose emaciated bodies symbolize the cruelty of the damage suffered. Olivier Boiscommun’s drawings in direct color offer real visual pleasure, and skillfully play on the contrast between the bluish reflections of a sea that has now disappeared and the sandy colors of a desert Paris.

La Baleine Blanche des mers mortes, by Boiscommun and Aurélie Wellenstein, 56 p., Editions Drakoo, release September 29.

collapsed memories – baya

Whoever says ecological threat says, potentially, the end of civilization. By imagining the publication of the illustrated notebook of an artist born in 1980 and died in 2044, the self-taught illustrator Baya brings up to date the epistolary story, which has delivered so many masterpieces in the history of the editing. And it does double duty by offering thanks to this mise en abyme a real reflection on the future of our world, between permanent crises, fear of collapse, and the role of man in this crazy race of the 21st century.

If this collapse seems to be the only possible future, the hero and fictional author of this work, the once famous actor Antoine Donelli, also reflects on the possibility of happiness, the power of authority, the relationship to the money or creation and its mysteries. Over the many pages, where Baya’s creativity explodes, we marvel at all these finds, making the book both a diary, a herbarium, a sketchbook from which reflections emerge.

With an essential question: how did we get there?

Collapsed memories, de Baya, 192 p., rue de l’hiquier editions.

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