Last Tuesday, the creator of one of the most entertaining, artistic, and batshit crazy comics of this century hit Edmonton. He brought with him his brother and a few friends, and proceeded to hold a crowd of mostly teenagers rapt for a full two hours. He told tales of love, cancer, destruction, and an American dystopia where artists-turned-warriors fight against masked corporate assassins. The crowd screamed, jumped, and generally lost their shit.
When Gerard Way speaks, those who can hear him listen. As the lead singer of My Chemical Romance, he has weaved stories in the form of massive concept albums, with each one being a brand new story, a new look, a new sound for the band. Since Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge, MCR has consistently reinvented themselves, bringing brand new concepts, musical styles, and new fans into the mix. By doing this, they remain not only one of the most exciting bands going, but also one of the most consistently relevant. Every new album opens them up to a new generation of fans, which ensures that they will be able to sell out venues for years to come.
When he had time between rocking the face off young ‘uns, Gerard also wrote The Umbrella Academy, a comic with enough story to fill twenty novels. It contains everything that makes comics great: brutal violence, kids with superpowers, and a chick who became a cello. Paired with Gabriel Ba, the team made the characters relatable and unbelievable and the content ridiculous yet poignant. And, just like the songs Way writes, ridiculously fun.
So here’s hoping Way’s well of creativity doesn’t dry up anytime soon. The entertainment world would be poorer without him. Oh, and check out a My Chemical Romance video and see if you can spot Grant Morrison, Way’s hero and mentor (it’s easy):