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King Lear

King Lear back

William Shakespeare & Gareth Hinds


Page 45 Review by Stephen

Re-issue of one of Booklist's top ten graphic novels of 2008 for youth, adapted from one of my top four Shakespeare plays. Never once did I imagine so much colour and light attached to it, though. Perhaps because every performance I've seen was staged indoors against a black backdrop. But really, it's pretty dark and stormy stuff and comes with an early Injury To Eye motif that would have fallen well foul of the Comics Code Authority a few decades ago.

It's one of those works that informs so many others, being a classic case of children successfully scrabbling, squabbling and dupliciting their way into an inheritance (new verb: to duplicit) while the most loyal and honest of daughters is perceived by her father to be -- Oh, Billy wrote it best:

"How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is / To have a thankless child!"

Yeah, well that's come back to bite you in the asp. Basically: vanity, blindness*, impotence, madness and rage. The cost of speaking up and doing the right thing when there are so many shits around you.

And you wonder why I failed my Oxbridge English exams.

* Without ocular extraction in Lear's case; after in Gloucester's.
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