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By T Cooper (Author) , Alex Petrowsky (Illustrator)

Pub Date: July 6th, 2010
ISBN: 978-1-935554-07-3
Publisher: Melville House

An unlikely premise—a polar bear makes it big in Los Angeles and then crashes—but somehow Cooper (Lipshitz Six, or Two Angry Blondes, 2006, etc.) makes it work.

The book is categorized as a graphic novel, but it’s more of a novella with illustrations. Beaufort the polar bear lives at the Beaufort Sea and is separated from his mother when an ice floe breaks off due to global warming. Attracted to the glitz and glitter of Los Angeles, he hitches down to southern California and nabs a job waiting tables at the trendy restaurant Nobu. There he’s discovered by Leonardo DiCaprio and offered the role of Leo’s sidekick in the film Separation of Oil and State. The reviews are sensational, and Beaufort rides the wave of celebrity and its over-the-top lifestyle. He hooks up with supermodel Svava and starts turning down plum roles—like the polar bear in The Golden Compass 2: The Return of Whimsy—because he doesn’t want to be typecast. (To his chagrin, the role eventually goes to Bigfoot.) Beaufort starts hangin’ out with the likes of Demi and Ashton and hits the party circuit hard. His creative juices start to flow, and his ego expands, when he decides that what he really wants to do is write and direct, so he starts crafting a screenplay called Bear, a movie about the war in Iraq starring Shia LaBeouf as a Marine from Alaska “who gets called out by his bunkmates when they discover he secretly sleeps with a stuffed bear that he also totes in his pack throughout their deployment.” Unfortunately, the movie bombs, and Beaufort becomes a pariah in Tinseltown—after all, you’re only as good as your last film. In his depression and search for meaning, Beaufort turns to Scientology. Although he has a few commercial auditions—including one for Klondike Frozen Novelties—Beaufort feels his life spinning out of control, but he pulls himself together, enters a 12-step program for alcoholism and addiction and writes a one-bear show that becomes an off-Broadway hit.

Outlandish and frequently hilarious.