Snowpiercer: The Original Graphic Novel

snowpiercer_vol_1_the_escape_coverNote: the following post contains spoilers for the Snowpiercer graphic novel as well as the film. Proceed at your own risk. This blurb is safe, real spoilers after the jump.

As you all know, I loved Snowpiercer to death. So much so that I decided to actually- gasp- read the source material. Here, for your edification, is a breakdown of the book vs. the movie.

A Complete List of Similarities in Snowpiercer, Book and Movie:

  1. There’s a train.
  2. There’s a stratified class system.
  3. All of humanity lives on the train and everything else is cold.

And that’s it. No, really. Continue reading

The Leftovers, Outlander, and the Adaptation of Novels for Premium Cable

outlanderTwo adaptations of novels have come to premium cable this summer. The first was Tom Perrotta’s The Leftovers on HBO and Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander premieres on Starz today although the first episode was available for streaming on starting last Saturday.

I am approaching these two TV series from very different points of view. The Leftovers has been on my to-read list since it was released in 2011 but I’ve never quite gotten around to it. It takes place in a world after a Rapture-like event. Two percent of the world’s population has disappeared I have watched every episode of the show so far. I love the show but I can’t quite say that I’ve enjoyed it. It is a difficult show to watch. People aren’t wrong when they describe it as misery porn but I can’t quite get on with those who think its a slog. The characters have gone through something absolutely horrifying and watching them struggle through putting their lives back together is endlessly fascinating for me.
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Graphic Novel Novice: The Walking Dead Issue 8

The Walking Dead Issue 8 CoverEditorial Note: Due to the unintentional abandonment of this series, there will be two or three Graphic Novel Novice posts per week until the series is back on schedule.

The whole group now knows that Lori is pregnant which drives their need to find suitable shelter as quickly as possible. They find an abandoned housing development that seems perfect. Or it would be if the entire place wasn’t occupied by walkers.

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Divergent (book)

divergentI live and work in Chicago, and for a shortish period of last year, I had the pleasure of bumping into the filming of the movie Divergent in various locations around town. I didn’t realize until it was already well under way that they’d turned a corner I drive past every morning into a mini film lot (though it made everything else make way more sense, since there was no insulation in those walls), they filmed in my actual workplace one Sunday, and I am a huge fan of films taking place in Chicago in general. I was eager to see the movie, and I wanted to read the book first, mostly so I would get the learning curve of this particular teen dystopia and could ignore the plot in favor of picking out where they filmed what and whether I’d stood in that same place before.

Turns out, that might have been the wrong tactic, since after reading the book I have little to no interest in seeing the movie (beyond the consistent motivating factor of getting to say “Hey! That’s my building!”). There are a great many things wrong with this book, everything from bad prose to bad concepts to bad execution. Added to that are poorly explained history, a failure to orient the reader in space (any space), and a whole whack of incredibly drippy teen romance. Hooray! …wait.

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Veronica Mars: The Thousand Dollar Tan Line

tanline I need to begin with a confession. My name is Emily and I used to read and write Veronica Mars fan fiction. It’s important to know this in order to understand where this review is coming from. I love the Veronica Mars universe so much that I wanted to spend as much time as possible in it.

That’s exactly what Veronica Mars: The Thousand Dollar Tan Line by Rob Thomas and Jennifer Graham allows us to do. It picks up right after the end of the movie. Veronica has begun to work for Mars Investigations. Keith is still out of commission due to the car accident that took place in the movie and Logan is still deployed and only shows up via email and Skype. Business is slow so Veronica starts the book with plenty of reasons to question her decision to give up a lucrative job as a lawyer in New York for being a PI in her hometown.
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The Giver Trailer

This week, a trailer for a movie adaptation of The Giver was released. Before I even watched it, I was repulsed by the very idea. To me, The Giver is too cerebral to make a good mainstream movie. I just couldn’t understand how it could be done. Then I talked myself down.

I’m usually very patient with adaptations. I don’t expect them to be exact copies of the original material. In fact, that would be boring. There is very little point in making an exact copy. An adaptation needs to do something to justify its existence. So I talked myself down and watched the trailer. I mean, it has Meryl Streep and Jeff Bridges. There must be something good about it. Maybe?

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Graphic Novel Novice: The Walking Dead Issue 6

walkingdead6Through no actual planning, issue 6 is the last issue of The Walking Dead volume 1. This will be the last issue I read for awhile because the TV series comes back tonight and I don’t feel like keeping track of the two storylines at the same time. The Graphic Novel Novice series will still be around, though. I won’t cover another comic issue-by-issue again but I will try out some other series.

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Graphic Novel Novice: The Walking Dead Issue 5

5 A few weeks have passed and many members of the group have been taking target practice with cans a ways away from the camp, with Andrea showing particular proficiency. Rick has decided that Carl is going to learn how to shoot even though Lori is less than thrilled with the idea of her seven year-old child carrying a gun. Carl appears to be a decent shop and Rick enlists the help of everyone else in the group to let him know if they ever see Carl treat the gun like a toy or go to take it out of his holster in a non-emergency situation.

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Graphic Novel Novice: The Walking Dead Issue 4

Walking Dead Issue 4 CoverIn this issue, we get the first disagreement between Rick and Shane, Rick and Glenn almost outsmarted the walkers while going further into Atlanta than usual to gather guns and ammunition, and Lori and Shane got up to a little something while they thought that Rick was dead.

Rick approaches Shane while he’s on watch and tells him that the group should move further away from the city. Shane disagrees, saying that if the government begins to recover that they’re going to save the cities first. Rick acquiesces but wants to train everyone in firearm use and arm them in the case of further walker attacks.

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