Thursday, August 28, 2008

Washington Post article on Graphic Novels

Here's an article from the Washington Post on the growing popularity of graphic novels: what they are, how they have been marketed, how they differ from comic books, and so on. It's written from the point of view of a skeptic, someone who has "a personal bias toward prose" (as I certainly do myself *g*).

I'm not sure how I feel about the upcoming OUTLANDER graphic novel. On the one hand, it will be a brand-new story written by Diana herself, full of new insights and interesting tidbits of information about the events of the first book. (Such as Jamie's reaction to the advice of the clansmen on his wedding night. ) For that reason alone, it's probably worth buying, for hard-core fans like myself.


I'm not so eager to see my mental images of Jamie and Claire turned into comic-book caricatures, no matter how well illustrated. Diana's descriptions in the books are so vivid that I have no trouble visualizing the major characters, and I don't necessarily want to have my personal images of them replaced by an artist's conception. Even if the artist is working very closely with Diana to make sure the images are as close to her "vision" as possible.

I also think that the GN is likely to be overpriced. Say, $20 or $25 for a book of 200 pages that can be read in an afternoon. No matter how pretty it is to look at, that's a lot of money for something so (relatively) insubstantial as a "glorified comic book". (Yes, I'm a skeptic too.)

I may well change my mind when it comes out, but for now I am looking forward to it with a sort of guarded enthusiasm. I still want to see it, and will definitely give it a serious look, but I don't think the OUTLANDER GN is going to live up to the hype. Of course, I could certainly be wrong!


This is my first post on this brand-new blog. I intend to use it as a place for commentary, random musings, and occasional Deep Thoughts on Diana Gabaldon's OUTLANDER and Lord John books.