In high school my English teacher said we couldn’t read a play, we had to see it performed. She made us get up in front of the class, reading our lines and (vaguely) acting it out.* We did Hamlet in Year 12 and I wonder if Nicki Greenberg’s graphic novel adaptation, staged on the page, would have been allowed by Mrs N.
I was devastated to discover NG’s Hamlet isn’t out till October!? Alien Onion provided a sneak peek of the very pretty outer and inner of the book and when I asked if I could use their photo I whinged (my special talent) about many things, not only having to wait til Oct. I concluded my whinge with,
i might just jump in a stream strewn with flowers
As in John Everett Millais’ Ophelia (1851-52), floating dead in the stream (mermaid-like**). I’ve discovered the Pre-Raphaelites had a thing for Ophelia and her flowers. John William Waterhouse’s Ophelia (1889) makes me think she’s lying in the Australian bush. I have no idea why because daisies are prominent among the grass. The Alien Onions told me not to jump, but I think I’ll strew myself with flowers, just to stop the whinging. My garden has many pretty ones (also some eaten ones which the hairy black caterpillars find tasty) and delight of delights my Dryandra lindleyana just flowered for the first time, although I couldn’t pick such a beautiful bloom to strew about.
I loved NG’s adaptation of The Great Gatsby. It’s a stunning example of the interplay between word and image found in graphic novels. I use it as my “literary” example to convince people who need convincing of such things (along with Skim by Mariko Tamaki & Jillian Tamaki).
I’m so looking forward to October and Hamlet, which took half the time to create as its predecessor Gatsby.
* Mrs N may sound like a terrible orge to subject children to such things, but she wasn’t. One day I started crying and she gave me a hug. Now you understand why I said children in describing my Year 12 class, tho maybe I was the only one.
**In Hamlet Gertrude described Ophelia as lying in the water mermaid-like. I don’t think she’d ever seen a mermaid, Waterhouse did.