The Stand: Captain Trips, by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Mike Perkins, Laura Martin & Stephen King
Marvel Comics – March 11, 2009 – Graphic Novel – 160 pages
Source: Personal Copy
I was really excited to see Sandy from You’ve GOTTA Read This review The Stand: Captain Trips graphic novel, and I totally blame her for my recent binge of classic novels turned graphic novels. From the credits, it appears everyone and their mother worked on this graphic novel and luckily it shows in the artwork, which is excellent. I can’t say fully how this works as an adaptation because I can’t quite recall whether or not I have actually read The Stand proper or have just seen the mini-series, but as its own story it made sense to me and is an enjoyable read. Well, as much as a read about a virus destroying the world forcing a showdown between good and evil can be enjoyable. It gets across all the important parts and characterizations in a way that is both makes plausible and compelling. I shudder to think of government enforced quarantine and the murder of civilians.
Once I started reading, the story was very familiar and it did an excellent job in going back and forth between all of the developing characters and storylines, and condensing and distilling what was probably hundreds of pages of the novel. It accomplished this and still managed to convey the essence of the characters,made it so you felt something for them. I especially enjoyed Fran, her newly unfolding pregnancy, and the conflict that it caused between her father who sided with her against her overbearing mother.
I was glued to the page to see how the deadly virus spread like wildfire from people coming into casual contact with each other and then going on to quietly and unknowingly devastate their own communities with the illness. I wondered who would be next and was disappointed to lose some characters that I liked pretty early in the story. I was not ready for the story to end when it did, but it stopped in the perfect place, and even though I have an idea of what comes next, I can’t wait to see it laid out on the page.
One thing I have really enjoyed about all of the graphic novels that I have read is how they whet your appetite for the details, or get you excited to read a novel that you otherwise might have ignored. At over 800 pages, The Stand is a daunting read by most reader standards, and at the very least a substantial time commitment. I am looking forward to reading the rest of the series, and maybe eventually, the original novel (if I can figure out whether I’ve I really read it, or not).
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