In a local bookstore yesterday I was surprised to see Anthem: The Graphic Novel, as Id heard nothing about such a project being in the works. Although the original, owing to an oopsie on Peikoffs part, is in the public domain (in the u.s. at least), this appears to be an estate-authorised version.
I have to say I dont think much of it. The interior artwork is sketchy and unfinished-looking; worse, its in a style reminiscent of Saturday-morning cartoons and Sunday-school Bible comics, and thus radically fails to capture the vision and gravitas of Rands text. The artist, Joe Staton, has illustrated comics ranging from Green Lantern to Scooby-Doo; unfortunately, it is the latter approach that dominates here. Its disconcerting to read, say, the description of the heroine as looking like a blade of iron whose eyes were dark and without kindness, and then see her depicted as a bubbly elf maiden. And while adaptation obviously requires condensation, the originals memorable opening line is an odd choice to cut out. (Though under the circumstances its perhaps understandable, as the line might ring a little too true.)
the original’s memorable opening line is an odd choice to cut out. (Though under the circumstances it’s perhaps understandable, as the line might ring a little too true.)
I had to actually laugh out loud at that part. And I’m not sure if Equality 7-2521 looks more like Fred or Adam of Eternia.
When I first read Moby-Dick as a kid, it was an abridged version but I didn’t know it. (It was still a thickish book, and I hadn’t yet learned what “edited for contemporary readers” meant.) I found out it was abridged when I came across a reference elsewhere to the “famous opening line” of Moby-Dick as being “Call me Ishmael” — because the version I’d read had left out that line! In fact, it had left out every reference to the protagonist’s name!!
I remember seeing this is Bristol’s Forbidden Planet. Although tempted, upon seeing the artwork, I resisted buying to too, and instead walked out with the new issue of my beloved Mass Effect.
It seems the graphic novel isn’t a great medium for Rand’s work. Many would say regular novels aren’t either, but there you go.
I still look forward to the movie of Atlas Shrugged.
I wouldn’t mind seeing Jae Lee take a stab at a Rand graphic novel. Some samples: here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.
I would think that Anthem would actually be a great choice to adapt for a graphic novel, just not in the Hanna-Barbera style. Zoinks!
BTW, I have to say that the clips and the trailer I’ve seen for Atlas Shrugged are, while not magnificent, not nearly as much of a train wreck as I’d expected. I have some hope for that film yet.
Not a train wreck? You must have missed 0:29-37 in the trailer. 🙂