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Sweeney Todd The Graphic Novel: Original Text: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (Classical Comics) Paperback – August 7, 2012

ISBN-13: 978-1907127090 ISBN-10: 1907127097

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Product Details

  • Series: Classical Comics
  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Classical Comics (August 7, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1907127097
  • ISBN-13: 978-1907127090
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6.8 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #89,328 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


*Frankenstein: The Graphic Novel: Quick Text. ISBN 978-1-906332-50-1.
*Frankenstein: The Graphic Novel: Original Text. ISBN 978-1-906332-49-5.
illus. by Declan Shalvey.

While remaining true to the spirit of Shelley’s famous work, this adaptation allows readers to have it their way, savoring this horror classic with either the “Original Text,” or the “Quick Text,” a simplified abridgement. More than a straightforward retelling, this edition invites readers to explore important social issues such as alienation, the consequences and ethics of scientific studies, as well as the nature of creation and destruction. Rich and lustrous artwork remains the same in both versions. Bucolic mountainsides and charming villages are rendered in a classical European painting style. In stark contrast, horrific elements are depicted with grotesque angular figures in monochromatic tones. Excellent lettering enhances the narrative without distracting from the images. An especially nice feature is the use of boldface to highlight key words and phrases. A table of contents, based on the original three-volume edition, helps readers follow the story’s progression. Back matter includes a biography of Shelley, a description of the novel’s origin and history, and a clear description of comic-page creation for this remarkable edition. Reluctant readers who start with the “Quick Text” will probably be enticed to try the “Original Text” and continue to explore this exquisite rendition of a gothic classic.

—Barbara M. Moon, Suffolk Cooperative Library System, Bellport, NY
School Library Journal, May 2009

From the Back Cover

From his barber shop in Fleet Street, Sweeney Todd murders selected customers to steal their money and valuables. Some suspect he is up to no good, but no one knows how he actually kills his victims. How does he dispose of the bodies? And what is his connection with Mrs. Lovett who runs a popular pie shop nearby? Will Colonel Jeffery discover what happened to his friend Mr. Thornhill after he visited Todd for a shave? And will the heartbroken Johanna Oakley ever find out what happened to her beloved Mark Ingestrie? Perhaps Todd’s shop boy Tobias Ragg will uncover the barber’s dark secrets…

Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street is a tale that has become part of London folklore. Adapted from the original serialized story The String of Pearls, published in weekly installments in The People’s Periodical from November 1846 to March 1847, this graphic novel breathes new life into the legendary barber who “polished ‘em off.”

More About the Author

Sean Michael Wilson is a comic book writer from Scotland, who now lives in Japan. He has had more than a dozen books published with a variety of US, UK and Japanese publishers. Although also writing 'western' style graphic novels, such as adaptations of classical novels, he often works with Japanese and Chinese artists on manga style books. He is currently the only British creator writing books for big Japanese publisher Kodansha. He is also the editor of the critically acclaimed collection 'AX:alternative manga' (one of Publishers Weekly's 'Best ten books of 2010' and nominated for a Harvey Award) and writer of the Stan Lee Award nominated adaptation of 'Wuthering Heights'. He has given talks on Gekiga style manga and AX in the USA, UK and Japan, to try to increase knowledge of mature, literary style manga. He has received several grants from both the English arts council and the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation in support of his publications. In general, Wilson has attempted to do comic books that are different from the normal superhero/fantasy brands, working with a variety of 'non-comic book' organisations in the process. His book with War on Want, 'Iraq:Operation Corporate Takeover' was reported on by a variety of mainstream agencies - such as Reuters, CCTV in China and several Middle Eastern magazines. His main influences remain British and American creators - such as Alan Moore, Grant Morrison, Eddie Campbell and Harvey Pekar.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Dennis M. Roy on February 10, 2013
Format: Paperback
Knowing that this was adapted virtually verbatim from a mid-19th Century "penny dreadful", I was somewhat leery of what to expect. Quite frankly, I was expecting it to be a 19th Century exploitation crime-horror piece, and somewhat badly written. Shockingly, this was not the case at all, and while the novel is certainly no Dickens or Melville, it is competently written, not dumbed-down for the lower class masses that might be expected to be the primary audience of the original, and fairly restrained (in a Hitchcock vein) when it comes to the explicit portrayal of violence. All in all, quite a literary cut above the sort of lowbrow period mass entertainment I was expecting. I was riveted by the story, despite having seen the movie with Johnny Depp, and knowing full well what to expect in terms of both whodunit and how. A story that has perhaps been unfairly ignored in its original literary form, this appears to be a quite faithful and well-wrought adaptation.

It certainly encourages me to seek out other famous stories of the penny dreadful era in a similar vein, such as "Varney the Vampire" and "Spring-Heeled Jack".
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