Jared Padalecki's Eternal Sunshine
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Jared Padalecki's Eternal Sunshine is a 71-page fan art book created by petite madame as part of spn cinema, a Livejournal community that invites Supernatural fans to recast their favorite movies with Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki. The art book is based on the movie Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind in which two lovers quarrel and then have each other erased from each other's memory, only for one of them to realize that they made a mistake and races to preserve his memories in the hopes of reconnecting again.
Art has been uploaded with the permission of the artist. The images in the gallery are sized to assist low vision readers; however click on the images for greater detail.
By offering the reverse view of the same scene on one page, the reader simultaneously "sees" the scene as if it were live, cutting back and forth between characters. Here, the imaginary Jensen who is being erased is asking the real Jared to remember "one thing". This entire scene is being played out in Jared's mind as the memory erasure procedure is happening.
This is the beginning of the key sequence in the graphic novel - illustrating the complete erasure of Jared's memories. In its online form, the reader will flip through the next few images and literally see the white space overtake Jensen's last request for Jared to "Meet Me In Montauk", the place they first fell in love. The erasure sequence will end in a completely blank white page.
The next image recreates the first page in Jared's journal. At first glance it looks identical, but on closer examination, once can see the heart shaped flowers crossed out. The text below is Jared saying he does not understand his compulsion to ditch work and go to Montauk. By subtlety changing what seems to be a familiar page, the reader begins to realize that not every memory may have been wiped out. It also forces the reader to look back at the first part of the novel, again playing with memory - this time the readers.
The novel follows a predictable path with Jared and Jensen reuniting. However, in this supposedly idyllic bedroom scene, there is an underlying tension, with Jared crossing out his doubts and drawing hearts around his pronouncement that Jensen is the perfect partner. This is the flip side of the earlier bleed through of Jared's supposedly erased memories. While those partial memories may have reunited the two lovers, the underlying issues that pulled them apart may not have been resolved.
The subsequent reveal of the issues that drove the two men apart is followed by the surprising realization that the issues that frustrated them before, were insignificant this second time around. Here the artist breaks the "4th Wall" by shifting from realism to cartoon style. Jensen beams happily, while in the background two sad clouds leave with their luggage and a gold star proclaims: Sadness go away! The cartoon could almost be Jared's drawing of the scene.
The last few pages of the graphic novel are in full color, signaling the emotional connection between Jared and Jensen. In the bottom pane, Misha Collins, another actor from the TV show Supernatural, is a stand in for the doctor who erased both Jared's and Jensen's memories.
The last page in Jared's notebook recreates the major themes of the graphic novel: the watch (signaling time), the Polaroid camera (memory), and the word "Who" in the upper half (signaling identity). And upside down the text "It wasn't the only thing I was going to forget" - the moment when Jared realized that erasing his memories of Jensen would remove the good as well as the bad moments. And scribbled across it all are the surreal drawings that someone might do while sitting on a train, waiting to pull into Montauk station.