Emotional Robots: A Question of Existence

Princeton Architectural. May 2021. 80p. ISBN 9781648960390. pap. $16.95. GRAPHIC NOVELS
This graphic novel is a satirical and provocative exploration of generational conflict through the metaphor of robots. It begins in the future, with humans and robots living in harmony. Soon the robots advance to replace humans, and the humans, no longer having a purpose, leave Earth for a different planet. With the humans gone, the robots go on to create the next generation of robots, which leads to the eventual obsolescence of the first generation. But then, the new generation deems the older robots valuable for their wisdom, and they exist in harmony.
VERDICT This graphic novel is structured like a children’s picture book, which complements the genre well. The illustrations are simple in execution, but full of hidden gems which heighten the overall comedy significantly. The tone is a hybrid of A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo, by John Oliver, and Pat the Zombie: A Cruel (Adult) Spoof, by Aaron Ximm. It tackles primarily political topics and contains mature content; it would be great for any adult graphic novel collection.
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