94 of 101 people found the following review helpful
For those of you who already own the Hedge Knight trade paperback that was originally published by Devil's Due, this is the exact same material you've already seen, re-released by Marvel Comics. It may have different cover art, but if you order the book expecting something new you will be disappointed. Now, on to the book itself...
I was a bit skeptical when I heard that someone was going to adapt George R.R. Martin's Hedge Knight short story into graphic novel format, but I love comics so I gave it a try.
The original Hedge Knight story, which appeared in the Legends anthology, was my introduction to Martin and his epic Song of Ice and Fire series. To be blunt, his writing ruined me for just about every other fantasy author. Nearly every other fantasy series pales in comparison.
So how did the Hedge Knight, a relatively straightforward tale about a knight who attends a tourney and finds himself entangled in the affairs of princes, translate into comic book form?
While Ben Avery's adaptation covers all of the main points of the story, it just doesn't have the same feeling. He does an admirable job, but it's still missing something intangible that the prose story gives the reader. I wish I could explain it better, but the feeling you get after reading this volume is similar to when you see a movie that has been adapted from one of your favorite books. It never quite measures up.
Mike Miller's artwork is the book's saving grace. His renderings of Martin's characters matched the pictures I had in my head from reading the story so closely it was downright eerie. From the epic battles to the mundane sequences, Miller's artwork is a major enhancement to the overall storytelling. Seeing his interpretation of Martin's characters is more than worth the price of admission.
This paperback collects the entire Hedge Knight limited series, plus a new story that leads into the second Hedge Knight story from Legends II. It may not please all George R.R. Martin fans, but it is a worthy attempt at adapting the story, and is well worth checking out.
38 of 43 people found the following review helpful
on July 3, 2005
To begin with, I have enjoyed the Song of Fire and Ice from the beginning, and I have been itching for the new book for some time. When I heard there was a graphic novel, I was both interested and disappointed. The first because it was another tale in a very interesting setting. The second because A Feast of Crows had been running late and would rather have had the book instead of the graphic novel. Upon reading the graphic novel, I found all of my fears allayed and that the book does more than just add to the setting of the Song of Fire and Ice.
I was pleased to find that the novel used figures that had been mentioned in previous book. It allowed me not just to hear about them through other character's accounts and histories, but I was able to 'see' them for myself. The book added further depth to the already expansive world.
I also discovered that the novel was based on a short story previously published in an anthology in LEGENDS, edited by Robert Silverburg. The story had been adapted to the comic book format later. Knowledge that the novel was based on a previously published story allayed any frustration I was feeling about Feast.
Most importantly though, beyond my obsession with the Song of Fire and Ice, the story was an excellent display of chivalry and character. How the virtues of knighthood of protecting the innocent and poor combat with the corruption that grows among the nobility who make up this same order. The character is taught as a Hedge Knight he is the truest form of a knight, with no other allegiance than to his vows.
I highly recommend this book not just for fantasy enthusiasts, but it is also a good moral tale, which is not necessarily straight forward.
23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
I first the discovered "The Hedge Knight" when reading the "Legends" short-stories collection -- it was my first introduction GRRM's "A Song of Ice and Fire" series and immediately led me to pick up "A Game of Thrones," which I had owned for nearly a year without reading. The great thing about this graphic novel is that is does a great job of bringing a visual aspect to Martin's written words. In many ways, the artists just "got" the feeling of the short story and Martin's series down to a tee. This a great addition for any collector of Martin's work and a must-read for fans of the series.
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on November 12, 2004
When I first saw this listed I thought Martin had done the same thing Jordan had done with "New Spring", in other words I thought he had taken the awesome short story from "Legends" and expanded it into a longer novel forcing me to spend extra money even though I had already shelled out for "Legends".
Thanks to reading a couple of the reviews I learned I was horribly mistaken and had kept myself from enjoying an awesome story in comic form.
It is the exact same story from the short story "The Hedge Knight" but as every reader knows the change of mediums from prose to comic gives the reader a new experience. I would never say that one or the other is better, that is up to the reader, but I would definitely say it is a real treat to be able to switch between the two. The artwork is beatiful and true to story, and I didn't feel that anything was left out that had been in the short story.
My only disappointment is knowing they can't do the entire series in this form also.
24 of 29 people found the following review helpful
on December 21, 2004
If I could, I'd give a copy of this comic book fantasy to every police officer, sheriff's deputy, and constable in the world. The story told is that of a Medieval morality play, in which what is right and what is "officially proper" are at odds with each other, as they often have been (and still are) in the real world. The "hedge knight" Duncan the Tall is a symbol for every good man who defies or fights an evil System for a noble cause. The story offers a reminder that while laws are written by men, morals are not, and that the world is sick when one forbids what the other requires.
Seeking fame as a knight, Dunk and his recently acquired young squire go to a tournament. During the games, one of the king's grandsons, Aerion, takes offense at a puppet show being shown by a young woman puppeteer, so he "arrests" her and begins to beat her, breaking her fingers, while his guards hold off the crowd. Duncan hears of the trouble, charges through the crowd, tosses the guards every which way, and falls on the princeling in a fury of fists and feet.
Knights must protect the weak and defend the innocent, even if the oppressor is someone with rank.
The princeling's guards finally subdue Dunk, and the Aerion has threatened to break out all of Duncan's teeth and then disembowel him, when suddenly Duncan's squire appears and orders Aerion's guards to back off. And they do. It turns out that the squire, whom Duncan had known as "Egg," is in reality a prince himself, shamed so badly by his brother's degeneracy that he ran away from home to live among the peasants.
Duncan is charged with treason and held in a prison cell, not allowed to participate in the tournament games. Ancient laws give Sir Duncan the choice, either of having a hand and a foot cut off, or to face the prince in single combat. Duncan chooses the combat. The same ancient laws, however, give the princeling an option. Instead of facing Duncan alone, he can insist that he (and his party) fight Dunk (and his) in a sort of collective duel in which seven knights face seven knights in a joust-like battle -- but with real weapons of war, not with tournament mock weapons. The battle would continue until one side yields or until all the knights on one side are dead.
The problem is that Duncan is a "nobody," whereas the princeling can count on the help of several of his royal relatives and can command members of the king's guard to fight on his side. When Duncan protests that he knows of no one who will take his part, he's told (by Aerion's father) that his failure to come up with six champions to fight beside him, in the single day before the battle is to begin, will prove his guilt - the idea being that the world is full of good men, and good men always fight for a just cause.
It is an assumption that is largely false, and the pretense to the contrary is no doubt highly convenient to those in power. But, nonetheless, Duncan does find six champions, despite the treacherous defection of one who was expected to volunteer. The last of the champions was Aerion's uncle, Prince Baelor, heir to his father's throne. Of all the royal characters, Baelor is the only one to concede that Duncan did right to punch Aerion in the face, and he is taking Duncan's side for the same reason that Duncan fought Aerion to save a puppetteer.
The best moment of the book, though, is when Duncan enters the field early and is joyously mobbed by affectionate peasants. Duncan - never the brightest knight in the realm - asks himself out loud why the peasants love him so well: "What am I to them?"
His answer is a reply from the armorer who made his shield: "A knight who remembered his vows."
16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
*** My rating is for THIS edition. I give the actual book 5 stars. This is the first edition graphic novel of "The Hedge Knight." A year after this The Hedge Knight - Second Edition [Graphic Novel] was published, which contained a few new pages of artwork for some of the individual characters. A year after that Hedge Knight Volume 1 Premiere HC (Book Market Edition) (Hedge Knight) was published, which is hardcover, a little higher quality, and contains a few pages of artwork on the house sigils. The Hardcover edition is superior to both of those and should be purchased instead of this edition. There is minimal difference in price. ***
"The Hedge Knight" is a novella based on the "Song of Ice and Fire" series by George R.R. Martin, and takes place 100 years before the events depicted in A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 1). This is the first book regarding Martin's "Tales of Dunk and Egg" stories, and follow the exploits of a Hedge Knight (basically a knight who is not employed) named Dunk and his squire named Egg. THIS IS A GRAPHIC NOVEL (comic book) based on the story that was originally published in Legends: Short Novels By The Masters of Modern Fantasy, and follows Ser Dunk as he enters a jousting tournament only to find he is soon fighting for more than just recognition.
For anyone who has read the Song of Ice and Fire series, "The Hedge Knight" follows the same writing style. Although the characters are new, most of the names have been mentioned by Martin in his previous books. I found that I had to do a little research after I read it to understand the families and who exactly the characters were as they relate to present events, but once I did I was pretty impressed with how well Martin had tied the stories together, as this novella focuses on the Targaryen family, who is only mentioned according to their past exploits in A Game of Thrones. That being said, no knowledge of the later books is necessary to enjoy the story, and fantasy, medieval, and comic fans should enjoy "A Hedge Knight" as a standalone graphic novel. It definitely makes it more enjoyable to have read the other series going into it though.
Although I am familiar with comics, this is the first graphic novel I have ever purchased. The adaptation is written by Ben Avery, who does a fantastic job of accurately translating the novella to this medium. The artwork is by Mike S. Miller and is even more exceptional. The characters in "The Hedge Knight" are not as developed as those from Martin's other books and this story doesn't have as much suspense or the plot twists we've come to expect, but as a short story it certainly entertains and provides another look at the world Martin has created, as well as giving insight into some of the names Martin has only touched upon in previous books. Given the choice, I am also glad I read it for the first time in the graphic novel, rather than the short story that was printed in the Legends anthology.
The Dunk and Egg stories are continued in the short story, "The Sworn Sword," which can be found in Legends II: Dragon, Sword, and King and will be out as a comic book in the Summer of 2007.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on February 23, 2010
I ordered both of the Hedge Knight graphic novels thinking they were actual novels, so I was quite surprised when I opened up my Amazon package to find comics/graphic novels instead. It may have been mentioned somewhere, but I didn't see any description to that effect, so I didn't realize it.
Luckily, my husband (who I bought them for) is a fan of graphic novels in addition to being a fan of the author. So, it turned out to be OK.
I just wanted to say for anyone not already aware, these are GRAPHIC novels. :)
Husband enjoyed them, and is looking forward to the third installment (if it ever gets published...) :P
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on February 8, 2005
Man, I just love King George! I really couldn't tell you how many times I could read and re-read his Song of Fire and Ice series. This is a great filler while you are painfully waiting for the Feast. The artwork is so well down in this "extended comic book." Characters are introduced that are prequels to the future series. The names wIll definitely ring a bell, if you are familiar to the series. This was just a well done short story, full of sacrifice, back-stabbing, characters that are more than they appear. Basically, everything you would expect from Mr. Martin, just in condensed form. A MUST READ FOR MARTIN FANS!
20 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on August 8, 2004
So much more than a comic, it's a graphic novel. Well in this case a graphic short story. Near the end of "A Storm OF Swords" Jamie Lannister(The Kingslayer) is reading the white book of the Kingsguard and pondering his legacy, and the Great men who came before him. One of the great names is SIR DUNCAN THE TALL. So here we can see the begining of basic knightly virtues that make Dunk the Lunk, a man with the potential to rise as high as Lord Commander of the Kingsguard. Dunk's a great guy. So is his squire Egg...or His Magesty Aegon Targaryen(the Unlikely) 5th of his name. Hopefully there will more Dunk and Egg stories after the Sworn Sword(legends vol2). In the White Book, it mentions that Dunk wins a tourney or two...so he gets some skills as a Knight!!
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on December 2, 2009
I picked this up issue by issue at the comics store, and it is so good that I purchased both it and it's sequel, Hedge Knight 2, in hardcover.
It has the great elements of an adult comic: solid charaterization, beautiful artwork and fine story telling. This is not a cliched knight/swords tale.
When I looked up the author, George R. R. Martin, I found that these stories are based on two short stories which are themselves stories from Martin's Song of Ice and Fire series. I am finished with the first 3 books of that series now, and they are just about the best fantasy around. Again, I could say, "solid charaterization and fine story telling. These are not cliched knight/swords novels."
If you like the graphic, I believe you'll like the novels. And vice versa.