From Wonderland With Love: Danish Comics in the Third Millennium
Edited by Steffen P. Maarup
Fantagraphics Books, 176 pages, $29.99.
Why I Killed Peter
by Alfred and Olivier Ka
NBM, 112 pages, $18.95.
Sexual abuse, particularly pedophilia, is a tough subject to handle in any medium, let alone comics. It requires a delicate touch, a sympathy for the victim and the supporting cast (though not necessarily the perpetrator), an understanding of all the conflicting emotions involved and a willingness to go for broke — to express the sheer horror of being violated both mentally and physically at such a young age in as honest and unflinching a manner as possible.
Two recent (or relatively recent at any rate) comics attempt to broach the unbroachable, but in wildly different ways. That both are successful has less to do with the grave severity of the subject matter than the particular talent involved and the unique perspectives they bring to their stories.