Homo Ludens – Notes About BOCAH Comic Book

According to Indonesia law, a man presumes to be adult when he/she reaches age of eighteen. When that age is coming, I come to realize that the most interesting part of life is when someone at his/her childhood, or to be clearer, when someone entering his essence of humanity as a homo ludens: which means, creatures who love to play. Sometimes before a man becomes an adult, or when someone still at his childhood, maybe he would be happy to play with one fake pistol, and then consider himself as a cowboy who carries pistol at his waist, walking on the dusty road, going to save a beautiful princess who had been kidnapped by some bad person.

The comic book, written by Bayu, Seta, Ockto, and given with title: B.O.C.AH (MnC!, 2010), depicted everyday’s life of four mischief-making children: Beri (11 years old), Badi (11), Ijul (11), and Ardi (11); who reach their essence of humanity by become a group of homo ludens. This comic book divided into twelve chapters, each chapter contains one story, which does not have any relation with the others. Readers might also notice that each panel occasionally burlesqued everyday’s life by focusing on Beri and his Friend’s naughty behavior; showing to us one world filled by Childs imagination. Moreover, it is not only their imagination, but also their game and adventure, which had, becomes elements of the whole story. Readers can find those elements by looking at some “ridiculous” (some reader might say, irrational) story. However, what kind of story we could find in B.O.C.A.H? To say some, they once dreaming about turning-out fire with giant glass. On the other story, Beri (with his ridiculous daydreaming experiment) trying to pull out moon from its orbit to prevent earth from tsunami disaster. With those “ridiculous” stories, of course, you do not have to ask any logical sense, because you really do not need to do that.

Perhaps the simple story line of B.O.C.A.H is actually the most endearing part of the comic. The entire plots follow four children relationship with one another, showing the various nuances of their lives. Although Beri seems to be given more portion to develop his nature than others boy do. Therefore, it seems that the only purpose that the other characters serve is to create conflicts, exposition, and comedic relief. I this case, I must say that the other characters are more like additional player, even in the beginning of this comic; four of them have mentioned to be prominent figure. Surely, in this comic book, as I said before, there is no room for logical sense. For a four mischief-child, all they can do is playing with their body and mind, more and more. Readers may find some plots, which are so irrational to us, but, once again, it is child imagination, you can imagine whatever, and whenever you want. At this point, irrational-thing will guide us to some pieces of childhood memories.