Blog - Bone Up On Kay & P

Bone Up On Kay & P

by Caley Tibbittz Collopy

You are seriously missing out if you're not reading the wonderful webcomic Kay and P:


There are several things about this comic that would normally annoy me to the point that I'd say say "Feh!" loudly -- transparent balloons, a compendium of trendiness from Kay's hair and piercings to her art studies and seemingly stereotypical young adult's love of music. With almost any other writer's sensibilities, this would be a laundry list of ham-handedly obvious and overplayed clichés to slog lazily through.

But not here. This is inspired stuff.

The trappings and cultural touchstones at play here -- so often forced, phony, and a waste of everyone's time in other works -- instead ring through this work with depth and authenticity. The bare-bones (ha!) of the premise is that college student Kay's best friend since childhood is an invisible skeleton that only she can see. His name is "P", short for Peaches (or Peach, it's been a while since I read it AND I'M TOO LAZY TO CHECK WOO GO AMERICA.

This is not an adventure piece; it's very slice-of-life in its scale. It's an engaging character drama, raising uneasy questions of loyalty and friendship.

Kay herself is a cool female character, strong and emotional and vulnerable independent and needy all at one -- exceptionally human. For all her ups and downs, she seems to have a solid handle on her odd life; watching her struggle to maintain that handle is, like, all watch-y and stuff, but then also struggle-y.

...sorry. Low on sleep lately. It is a genuinely interesting balance she has to maintain, and it's another-word-for-interesting watching her do it.

The art is lovely as hell> While I am only in my early 30s, I am a bitter old past-clinging curmudgeon at heart, so I'm not the biggest fan of the digital paint revolution, but there is a very organic quality to this artist's approach. The world is animated enough to be engaging and real enough to feel, well, like it's really there -- impressive, for a book so clearly step outside our reality. There is a naturalism to this cartoony paint style that really sells the situation at the core of the premise, and wins over the bitter black heart of this grousy old compu-Scrooge.

Of course, Kay may just be crazy -- but from her perspective, it is a supernatural story. From mine, it's... well, this is the point at which your average review blog stoops to bring you awful puns like "it's just super" or "it's super AND natural", but we don't tolerate awful crap around here.

How this marvelous comic has gone unnoticed and un-picked-up by, say, Image, I have no idea. Whatever comic you just bought, Kay & P is probably better. WAY better.


Frogs on a bog log,
-Caley Tibbittz

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