Cover image for 2024 : a graphic novel
2024 : a graphic novel
Rall, Ted.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : NBM/ComicsLit, 2001.
Physical Description:
96 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PN6727.R35 A18 2001 Graphic Novel Central Library

On Order



Move forward two decades and see the world where giant media moguls and software corporations have become our big brothers. They want the best for us. They know what's best for us. And what is best for us we have chosen ourselves, to be a consumer heaven with no questions asked. A terrifying future where the past doesn't matter and no one cares. Ted Rall updates and spoofs 1984 in a scathing look at where we could be heading. His best and most chillingly funny work to date.

Author Notes

Twice winner of the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award and a Pulitzer Prize finalist, Ted Rall is a syndicated editorial cartoonist and columnist for Universal Press Syndicate. His previous books include To Afghanistan and Back , and Revenge of the Latchkey Kids .

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Rall, whose acerbic political cartoons in alternative weeklies and such other venues as Fortune magazine proudly exhibit the cynicism of the postboomer generation, tries something more ambitious in this graphic novel that simultaneously updates and parodies Orwell's 1984. Rather than imposing a totalitarian political system, Rall's Big Brother represents the "corporate-government complex" in a society driven by technology and consumerism and run by media moguls and software companies. The system is called neopostmodernism. Although Rall throws out plenty of clever ideas in the brief work, much of it is pretty strident and heavy-handed. And unlike Orwell's protagonist, Winston Smith, Rall's Winston is so disaffected that he doesn't particularly care when he is tortured into betraying his Julia by being forced to watch boring nature films of rats. Unfortunately, neither may many a reader. Still, Rall's distinctive blocky, punkish drawing style, though more effective in shorter doses, well conveys the story's depersonalized, dystopian environment. --Gordon Flagg

Publisher's Weekly Review

Executed in his familiar black and white blockish graphics, Rall's latest (Search and Destroy; My War with Brian) takes place in a future where blind consumerism has rendered history and human consciousness irrelevant. 2024 is meant to be a sly, 1984-inflected commentary on the shallowness of our times, but it never quite manages to measure up to its formidable literary model. In Rall's vision of the future, Web TV is omnipresent, and the economy is run by megacorporations that exploit ethnic tensions in trade wars. As in 1984, the protagonists are named Winston and Julia, and share a fickle dissatisfaction with the corporate system that dictates and monitors their lives. They live in a world where news and history are easily revised digitally, and shopping and pornography substitute for social interaction and passion. It's a "future where the past doesn't matter and no one cares" and where the key to life, says Winston, is to "keep yourself entertained, stave off boredom... hope for a way out before you come up for euthanasia." Rall's view of the future's social contract is a razor-sharp, irony-saturated parody of today's pop culture/consumerist consciousness. But his bleak lampoon of the mindless consumer state requires a lot of exposition, and, at times, his bold-faced text boxes threaten to visually overwhelm the exploits of his characters. Indeed, the characters sometimes function more as talking points than as protagonists. Even his updates of Orwellian doublespeak ("Assumptions Permit Imagination," etc.) are used to poor effect, with frequent, text-laden shifts of events undercutting the work's narrative logic. Undeniably smart and witty, the book can also be a bit awkward and disjointed. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved