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Colour in Thi Bui's "The Best We Could Do" - WWAC
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'The Best We Could Do': Thi Bui Honors Family's Immigration Story in Debut Graphic Novel
Or, aside from the endpapers, the single-colour wash looks an eerie amount like blood, to the point that I was sometimes made uncomfortable by it . Single-color washes of the sort that Bui employs generally, not in the sense of resembling blood are currently a common trend in graphic memoir. Laura . The Best We Could Do is a beautiful example through which to explore this topic, as Thi Bui uses her blood-coloured wash to explore a particular set of complexities around stories of immigration that involve blood, both literally the Vietnam war, the blood present at the scene of birth and figuratively family lines, ethnicity, ethnic cleansings, racism. Of course, these seemingly disparate facts of life war and birth, for instance are shown to be intimately linked together, and the blood-metaphor that underpins the entire story, that we might say haunts the text, is one of the main mechanisms through which Bui shows this connection.
The responsibility is immense. A wave of empathy for my mother washes over me. Much of the subsequent narrative centers on the history of her mother, father, and siblings living in war-torn South Vietnam, then fleeing in when Bui was three. The weight of this history informs the entire narrative, at times foregrounded but always present. In her early twenties, Bui traveled back to Vietnam to meet her extended family.