Coming to the aid of those who languish in tyranny’s chains

Saturday, 19 July 2003 — 10:31pm | Comics, Literature, Michael Chabon

A bit late in the reporting, but nonetheless, here is the greatest and most exciting piece of literary news I have heard in a fair while:

Pulitzer-prize winning author Michael Chabon has signed on with Dark Horse Comics to publish Michael Chabon Presents…The Amazing Adventures of the Escapist. The quarterly comic anthology will feature characters created by Chabon in his critically acclaimed, Pulitzer Prize winning novel The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay.

Set primarily in the late ’30’-s and early ’40’-s at the birth of the comic book industry, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay tells the story of two young men who create a popular comic-book character known as “The Escapist.” The Dark Horse anthology will present tales of the Escapist and his cohorts set in the style of various comic book eras from the 40’s through today. Chabon will guide the direction of the series as well as contribute to writing original stories. Other artists and writers will be announced in coming months.

Read all about it here – there is a nice piece of promotional art there as well.

I am nothing even remotely close to a comic book aficionado, but this announcement has me wetting my pants with anticipation. Why? Well, for starters, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay is arguably the best piece of contemporary literature I have ever read, for reasons that would fill several essays. Among the most vividly-written scenes in the piece are the respective origin stories of The Escapist and Luna Moth, comic book sequences inked with words alone; the panels leap off the page, and if they evoke one reaction, it’s exactly what Sammy Clay said upon the genesis of his creation: “I wish he were real.”

Suffice to say, an actual comic book of The Escapist is a dream come true – that is, if handled properly. Considering the extent of Chabon’s direct involvement, it is reasonable to expect it to live up to his grand vision.

And if you haven’t read Kavalier & Clay, then what are you waiting for? Go get it!

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