Is it time for a graphic novel adaptation of 'The Lord of the Rings'?
It hit me recently that it has been over thirty years now since the now defunct Eclipse Comics released their 3-part comic-book adaptation of The Hobbit, adapted by Charles ('Chuck') Dixon with Sean Deming, and lavishly illustrated by David Wenzel. The comic book was subsequently collected into a graphic novel which was published by Ballantine and has been kept in-print ever since.
Back in the 1980s, a graphic novel adaptation of The Lord of the Rings seemed too ambitious; the book was too long, the story too complex to be easily serialized, the audience for such a project might be too small. However, there have been a few changes over the years. Eclipse is no more. The make up of the Tolkien Estate has shifted. And it can be argued that the graphic novel format has come into its own, with both original books and adaptations of major literary works having become commonplace. Should the idea of a comics adaptation of LoR be revisited?
I could certainly see it happen. Each of the six books that comprise LotR could be adapted as separate miniseries and collected into book form, probably in multiple volumes and without the appendices, though perhaps even they could be included in an abridged form. Personally, I think Dark Horse Comics (publishers of Mike Mignola's Hellboy) would be the ideal place for such a project. But what do you think?
I like the idea of a six-book graphic novel.
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The graphic novel section of my little library has been growing by leaps and bounds, both fiction and non-fiction! Some of the fiction books are receiving awards (Jerry Craft's "New Kid" just won the Newbery). And they're wonderful for the kid who is turned off by "too many words".
I grew up on Classics Illustrateds, you might call them the "original graphic novels"!
A properly adapted and illustrated LotR would be great. I'd love to see a set done by, say, Ted Nasmith or Alan Lee or John Howe, or a similar artist. Or maybe have a separate artist for each book.
Sadly, Tim Hildebrandt passed away in 2006. Greg is still around at age 81.
I imagine each 'Book' of The Lord of the Rings being adapted as separate arcs; however, the six arcs could be doubled up into just three volumes under the familiar titles: The Fellowship of the Ring; The Two Towers; and The Return of the King. Not that six volumes couldn't be done.
(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Feb 19 2020, 6:25pm)
I read "Moby Dick" one afternoon as "Classics Illustrated"
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and it was more satisfying than reading the Cliff's Notes. I also wasn't going to read the actual book with its many chapters devoted solely to whaling, which would bore me.
I can see that, just as the Peter Jackson movies induced some people to read Tolkien's books, so too would graphic novels be a gateway to the trilogy and the movies for some readers. Depending on the adaptation and illustrations, I might even read them myself, and I'm very much a book-first fanboy.
was never going to read "The Hobbit" or watch three whole fantasy films, but he enjoyed the David Wenzel version I gave him so he could understand what I kept going on about. It was a nice bonding thing for us when the films came out.
Maybe, just maybe, he would have liked a LOTR graphic novel as well. I would.
I have a small but select collection of graphic novels, including one of "Pride & Prejudice" and one of "Jane Eyre." All the Firefly ones. Alan Moore's stuff. Some Desden Files. I'd definitely buy a LOTR graphic novel.