Thursday, February 2, 2012

The Dreamer

Adventure. Romance. War. What more could you want in a webcomic? The Dreamer has it all. Lora Innes's comic is immensely entertaining. A new page comes out every Wednesday and Friday and so on those days, my room mate (whom I have convinced to read this comic) and I get pretty excited.

The story is about Beatrice Whaley, a seventeen year old high school senior from Boston. She lives a charmed life. She's pretty, wealthy, and is the star of her school's drama club. But one night she finds herself in 1776 and she becomes enveloped in the world of the American Revolution, and all of the people in it. One of particular interest, is Allan Warren, a handsome patriot soldier who comes to her rescue. Every night, the dreams pick up right where they left off and everything she experiences in them is so vivid, that Bea starts to wonder if she really is just dreaming. Or perhaps there is something more?

A good historical webcomic requires a lot of work, especially before even illustrating the first page. The research required for such a project is immense, so kudos to the creator. Her extensive knowledge of the subject matter makes the story more believable (aside from the obvious suspension of disbelief) and much more enjoyable. The script here is really what stands out the most. It is well written, touching, funny, and at times poignant. Reading about Bea's struggles with the nature of reality and dreams is deep and meaningful.

The art style of the Dreamer is very reminiscent of the “classical” comic style, with the heavy black lineart and bright colors often found in superhero comics. This is not my favorite style, but the comic is well illustrated (it is always fantastic to read a comic where the artist has taken care to study human anatomy and perspective; nothing is worse than jarring and inaccurate proportions!) and ultimately suits the lighter tone the story often takes on.

Also noteworthy is the creator herself, Lora Innes. She is a professional illustrator and the founder of the Comic Creators for Freedom, a collective of webcomic creators who each year participate in a fundraiser to raise money for organizations helping against human trafficking. To date, Comic Creators for Freedom has raised over $15,000.

If you like history, romance, adventure, and perhaps even a little bit of philosophical rumination (though for this you would really have to read between the lines, which is a good thing as it fits the tone of the work), then the Dreamer is definitely something to check out.


  1. I was never interested in comics growing up. My mom once bought me a comic book of some sort, and I just couldn't keep my attention on it. For some reason, I feel like I would like this comic though... I think I had this perception that all modern comics were classified in "anime" and after watching "Spirited Away" I knew I would not be a fan of it. This seems really different and almost like a fiction story that pretty much anyone would enjoy!

    1. Yeah, definitely! I really think you should check it out. Anime is not for everyone and "Sprited Away" (which I really enjoyed, actually) is a good example of an animated story with a, well, I guess you could call it a "Japanese sensibility". It's a different thought process that goes into the creation of the story. A lot of webcomics, like the Dreamer, for example, has a western sensibility in the way the story is presented, but it is less superhero comic and more novel with an artistic element.