Obsession is a graphic novel is about a young girl called Clarissa, stuck out in the middle of nowhere, looking after her disabled mother. Her father absconded years before, leaving her mother in a mess of bitterness, obsessed with bringing her daughter up to be a perfect model of behaviour. Like most average sixteen-year-olds however, Clarissa resents this intrusion and wishes her life was elsewhere. So when a tall, dark stranger comes into their lives, she does all she can to turn her rich sexual fantasies into reality.
The book eventually turns into a taught thriller – we use the word ‘eventually’ because the character and scene setting fills somewhere around the first two thirds of the book, rambling on for far too long. We get a measure of Clarissa’s character early on but the point is laboured, through fantasies where she’s a nurse in a hospital to diary entries, unfortunately lettered into the book as a barely legible scrawl. Quite honestly, the thoughts and desires of this flowering woman are nothing to write home about and a little more action and less soliloquising might have upped the pace.
The artwork is disappointing. It’s well designed and there are flashes of interest but the general detail isn’t up to scratch. The characters are unsophisticated and, being a character-driven piece, the players really ought to be perfect.
I was disappointed overall – this looked to be a promising thriller but the lead character goes on too much and the drawing drags it further down. It left me with the feeling that a little tightening up could have got a more satisfying result from what, in a shorter format, might have been an interesting plot.