My Boyfriend is a Bear, Graphic Novel Review

Author Pamela Ribon, Illustrator Cat Farris

My Boyfriend is a Bear is about a young woman who is dating a bear. A literal, American Black Bear straight from the forest.

He’s 100% a bear. He’s not a man-like personification of a bear. He doesn’t speak, he has big paws with claws, he eats a ton (including garbage), and he hibernates.

The hibernating thing becomes a pretty big issue.

It starts with the girl going on a camping trip with her total douche-bag boyfriend where she first sees the bear, then he finds her again later and they somehow hit it off. Possibly because she was drunk enough not to be scared out of her mind.

She falls in love with this bear pretty quickly despite their many many differences and all the red flags that come with dating something of another species.

girl learning about bear tendencies to abandon their cubs
among other problems

And since I know you’re wondering, it does appear that they do have sex. Based off two jokes, one about breaking the bed and the other about mating season. How they do this is not shown, guess it’s left to your imagination. Which is definitely preferable in this case, I don’t need to see that drawn in detail.

They end up forced to take a break from their relationship since the bear needs to go hibernate. This is when the metaphor of the story really comes through.

The couple was having some issues pre-hibernation but didn’t necessarily want to break up. Despite what some friends and family members thought to be best.

After having an extended break to focus on their own needs they come back to each other refreshed and with a better understanding of how to be in a relationship with someone without losing yourself.

You can never allow a relationship to take over every aspect of your life. To change who you fundamentally are as a person, or a bear. It’s healthy to take some time apart and put in effort on things that will help you grow.

My Boyfriend is a Bear is basically a story about a very basic relationship, it just happens to involve a huge cuddly bear. I’m still not convinced that this bear is the best partner for our young heroine but she does seem happy and it’s her choice to make.

It’s a relatable story, especially for those of us who went through that dating someone not quite right for us phase. Or maybe you found your ideal match in an unlikely place.

But seriously, in real life, please don’t date outside of your own species.

4/5 bears 🐻🐻🐻🐻

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