The Discworld Graphic Novels
Harper, Oct 2009, $$16.99
“The Colour of Magic”. Discworld lies evenly flat on four elephants who ride on the back of a turtle orbiting around the universe. Tourist Twoflower from the Agatean Empire on the Counterweight Continent has come to Ankh-Morpork to see the famous sights. Noted loser, drop-out and coward Rincewind the worst wizard is assigned to show the visitor the city or he will lose a few extremities in case he foolishly refuses the kind offer. When an inferno engulfs Ankh-Morpork Rincewind and Twoflower run for their lives with two many legged luggage. Thus starts their miscapades.
“The Light Fantastic”. Wizard extraordinaire Rincewind and tourist Twoflower escape the void of space at a time when Discworld appears on a course to collide with a red star that at a minimum would destroy the turtle, four elephants the planet and its residents. The great minds know that the eight great magic spells will save the turtle, four elephants, the planet and its residents. Seven spells seem ready for deployment; the eighth resides alone inside the brain of Rincewind.
The first two 1980s tales make for a fun graphic novel filled with humor, irony and satire that seems timely as health care for the uninsured, under insured, and economically deprived insured is debated by those who have access to the best in health care on the cheap. The adaptation is fun as Scott Rockwell captures the essence of the misadventures with great minds who belong in Congress debating the gender of the turtle, Cohen the Barbarian explaining the subtly of combat, and Death learning to play bridge before Bill and Ted. The graphics illustrated by Steven Ross enhance the belief that Discworld exists though readers will have their own mental images to compare with. Except for purists, fans of the saga will enjoy this adaptation of the original duology while floating at a turtle’s pace through space.