Monday, April 10, 2017

Manga Hamlet

    Emma Vicelei (illustration) & Richard Appignanesi (text). Manga Shakespeare: Hamlet (2007) Hamlet is one of my favourite plays. This version’s not a script, it’s meant for reading. The adapters have cut the text severely, the effect is a focus on the essence of story and character. The graphics convey what on stage is done with voice and movement. The setting in a post-climate-collapse cyberworld works: almost everything takes place inside a climate-protected, wholly artificial complex. It makes for a claustrophobic ambience that expresses Hamlet’s dilemma.
     The black and white manga style annoys me, though. The opening pages use delicate colour, it would improve the work immeasurably to use the same pallette throughout. Colour makes imagery more readable.
     Nevertheless, for me, this version was a page turner. Well done. ***

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