Book Review: ‘Silhouettes From Popular Culture’


Silhouettes From Popular CultureIllustrator: Olly Moss

Publisher: Titan

Sometimes a book cross our threshold here at the House of Geekery that provides a challenge for our humble reviewers. Sometimes the book defies typical convention and proves difficult to encapsulate in a short review, or maybe it features a unique experience that you don’t want to spell out to clearly as it’s best experienced in the book itself. The there’s Silhouettes From Popular Culture, which just doesn’t have much that can be said about it.

Not that we don’t love it – because we do – but without characters or even a story it’s not an easy thing to write about at length. Olly Moss is a talented artist who has built up a solid following online and has moved into the real world with exhibits of his pop-culture inspired works. This rather excellently printed and bound collection is the wealth of Moss’s exhibit of pop-culture portraits presented in silhouette, much like a Victorian era pendant.

Silhouettes From Popualr Culture

Certainly a favorite.

The collection cuts quite a swathe through pop-culture and encompasses classic Universal monsters, old school video game heroes, modern television favourites, Manga legends, Pixar characters, superheroes and their enemies and many, many more. For the most part there isn’t a pattern to the presentation, although most adjoining pages accompany each other. Sometimes they share a tale, such as Carl and Ellie from Up, and sometimes they share a different link such as Edward Scissorhands and Capt. Jack Sparrow. Sometimes a couple of pages will be dedicated to the eleven different incarnations of The Doctor while others are sole representatives of their source material.

Any and all geeks will enjoy an afternoon admiring the work and challenging each other to identify each one. Olly Moss uses his introduction to challenge the reader to be geeky enough to pick them all (only one missed, dammit) and Duncan Jones offers his name in praise of the work. This is especially worth looking for if you’ve got a geek who’s difficult to buy for coming into the holiday season.