Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Recommendation: 28 Days Later Graphic Novel

Non Spoiler Review:
Usually graphic novel adaptations based on successful movies really suck. The art is thrown together and little effort is put into the storyline except to cash in on the brand name. I cracked open 28 Days Later with the same attitude, but was quite impressed with what I found.

The story focuses on Selena, who is at a Norwegian refugee camp following the events of the first film. She's contacted by Clint Harris, a journalist who wants to get passed the British quarantine to break the story on the infection. Much like Ripley in Aliens, she's convinced to go back into the horror of Britain serving as their guide. With an assortment of supporting characters they set about getting into Scotland and down to London, facing off against NATO forces barring entry, dangerous survivors and, of course, the infected.

Written by Michael Alan Nelson and produced by Boom!, 28 Days Later is a very good read just on its own merits as the story tracks Selena and her party's journey. The art is steadily above par for this sort of adaptation and rendered in a style suitable to the theme and content. Declan Shalvey and Alejandro Aragon handle the bulk of the issues, with a few fill ins here and there. 

Several storylines play out over the course of the series, and for the most part, they are all fairly well done (with the exception of a rather odd revenge plot tied to the first film that just doesn't come off as very plausible, given the circumstances of the infection). Selena, the only holdover from the movies, is portrayed true to her established character, and more insights into her background are provided to flesh her out. The other secondary players (many serving as cannon-fodder) all get a moment to shine and grew on me as the story progressed.

Without giving too many details away, things do not go smoothly, or as planned, and the storyline eventually begins to run parallel with events from 28 Weeks Later, with some cameos from the films here and there. It all culminates in issue 24, with a creative and suitable resolution to the story as a whole.

If 28 Days Later is a favorite film, or if you're looking for a decent tale from the zombie genre, check out this series, which has recently wrapped up and available in trade or hardcover.

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