Who knew that a tiny little comic zine could so neatly summarize the infinitely complex and weird feelings I have about the legacy of Rob Ford?
In the pages of Rob Ford, crackerjack illustrator (and 2015 Gene Day award-winner) James Edward Clarke presents a series of portraits of the infamous late Toronto mayor’s face in all of its myriad, blustery forms. You want a boyish smile? How about a stare of blank bemusement? An exhausted, slightly weary scowl? A glazed “I’m so bored in council” look? You got it – in full colour, in a brilliant array of pinks and greys and black line work. My favourite page features a slightly slouched, blue-suited Ford staring straight at the reader, uttering a word bubble containing his infamous line: “I’m Rob fuckin’ Ford.”
There’s been thousands of words spilled about Ford’s drug and alcohol addictions, his shady dealings, his racism, his fight with cancer, and his dubious legacy in the annals of Toronto politics — but somehow Clark’s zine captures the pathos and ridiculousness, the hilarity and confusion of this larger-than-life being and turns it into one great fuckin’ memorial for RoFo. RIP.
Alison Lang is the Editor of Broken Pencil.