28 March 2013

The Artful Readers Club for March

The Walking Dead Compendium One by Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard {and some other folks}
Charlie Adlard recently admitted in an interview that he often makes up his characters on the page. A fact which can cause any serious character designer to bow in admiration. As you can see the likeness of the graphic novel with the AMC show is very close. 

Tweet Review: A long, arduous display of how a few people can entertain the masses.

Since I am reading and watching The Walking Dead simultaneously, I am constantly comparing the two. Fans of the television series will be pleased to know that the graphic novel is just as interesting, if not more so.

The details are very different in the first 48 issues of the graphic novel, for example, Carl is a lot younger and has a playmate Sophie..whose fate in the television series is quite astonishing. There are endless differences, but the overall storyline remains consistent in both versions which is; what happens to people during a zombie apocalypse?

If I were to choose between the two, I'd choose the graphic novel. In a black and white picture book, a horror story is less horror and more comedy. Although, the television show is often very funny with how gross it can be, but the pages are just pages and my brain is never startled.

I've been reading comic books for a number of years, but have had a hard time finding work that I really like. One of my main issues is that the images are just 'too much' and now that I have studied comic book art I realize why. Most American comics are made with several artists and my eyes find it confusing to read. So one of the compelling features of The Walking Dead is Charlie Adlard's art. He has been drawing the series for 7 years with writer Robert Kirkman. Adlard's style is expressive and clear and combined with Kirkman's knack for strong character development it's no wonder the series caught the attention of a filmmaker (the AMC series was developed by director of The Shawshank Redemption Frank Darabont).

This story reminds me of one of my all time favorite graphic novels called Uzamaki by Junji Ito. It's Japanese horror manga and what I find so interesting about it is that it's actually comedy. And that is how I see The Walking Dead. It's so outrageous that it ends up being funny. There is no thinking, "Oh that's not realistic..." because it not, none of it is, it's pure imagination which is at the heart of brilliant stories.

15 March 2013