I came onto the Phonogram bandwagon late thanks mainly to the second series which was set in a club in Bristol where I live for the time being. This is the third series from creators Gillen and McKelvie focusing this time on Phonomancer (a magician that gains power from music) Emily Aster, one of the characters from the first volume.
Gillen and McKelvie set the story in Brighton in 2001 so it’s a period piece (and I feel fucking old saying that) so that means the big music reference here is The White Stripes, one of the first big American bands to wash across the UK at the start of the new millennium after Britpop was well and truly over, and DJ culture had become insanely corporate. There was a gap and bands like the White Stripes and The Strokes came into inhabit a vacuum, and dear god it was actually a great time to be around.
Before we get too settled into the cosy pre-911 world of 2001, Gillen and McKelvie flick forward to the dismal pits of 2009 where our characters are a wee bit pudgier yet still hope for the perfect musical experience, in this case, A-Ha.
From here it gets weird as it turns out Emily did a deal where half her personality lives in the world behind the TV screen, and it’s a bit pissed off.
The Immaterial Girl is a lovely little comic that stays just on the ride side of hipster sneering (though there’s a great one page bit of sneering in this issue that’s hilarious) while leaving Emily fighting for her life in an A-Ha video. It’s fantastic stuff. Buy it.