Thursday, October 27, 2011

Mihir's Thoughts: 18 Days by Grant Morrison with artwork by Mukesh Singh


18 Days was originally announced in early 2010 and was called MBX. It was Grant Morrison’s take on the great Indian Epic of Mahabharata which translates to the great Indian War. It is a story which every denizen of the Indian subcontinent is familiar with. It originally was written in Sanskrit which consists of about 100,000 verses. It’s an epic which has caused many a discussion amongst its readers as it encompasses many topics pertaining to human behavior, the interchangeability of the hero-villain title depending on the perspective and lastly what is dharma?

There are many such concepts discussed in it as well, and there's also much more in it namely huge battles and great characters among other things. Grant Morrison is a well known writer who has had various successful runs with many iconic characters so when he chose to associate himself with this project, I was super excited. The original plan was to feature it as web movie or in episode formats, on their official website. The following options are given:
- Two 90-minute movies
- Six 30-minute episodes
- Eighteen 10-minute web episodes
- A 200-minute DVD movie

It was supposed to be released sometime this spring; however spring-summer went by without any visible announcement. There was no new news about this project and currently it seems to be mired in pre-production or some problem which the creators refuse to discuss. However one great thing did come out earlier this year and that’s a hardcover book of 120 pages, featuring gorgeous artwork by Mukesh Singh, Grant Morrison’s notes, the script for the first three chapters detailing the start of the series. There are also detailed notes about the project conception, and how the collaboration took place.

And then there’s the artwork, which is described as Techno-Vedic by Morrison and I can think of adding "Incredible" to it as well. Here are some of the images below:

Rama Battling Ravana

The Pandavas ready for battle


The War Begins


Dinosaurs and Vimanas

The book 18 Days has a lot of incredible artwork and begins with a small introduction by Deepak Chopra. Then there’s the story bible wherein Grant details various aspects of the series, including geography, history, character information, weapons and basically explaining all the “Techno” and “Vedic” parts to the story. The bible is extensive detailing various facts and minutiae which are present in the story and are given a futuristic look. Then there’s the authorial script of the first three chapters which along with the art work detailing the scenes is pretty freaking AWESOME!!!

I consider myself to be an avid reader in matters of Indian mythology to be decently versed with it. In regards to Mahabharata, I’m a hardcore geek, always looking to read more about it and reading the various books written about it. So in this matter I found some mistakes in the book in regards of the characters like Jayadratha being counted as Kaurava, Dhristyadumna’s name being changed, Sahadeva being passed as the elder twin, etc. I’m willing to overlook these small mistakes for the simple fact that the creators are not recreating the Mahabhrata as the original version. But as a highly futuristic version wherein the characters are more akin to super powered versions of themselves. There’s also the addition of dinosaurs and several futuristic weaponry and flight vehicles. While the saga does mention weapons which seem a bit like the weapons mentioned here, but this version of the Mahabharata is more westernized and geared towards introducing the western world towards the awesome story that is the Mahabharata.

As a fan and person who would love to see more readers introduced to this epic, this is a huge step taken by Prospective Studio & Liquid comics and I hope we can get more soon. For all readers who have previous knowledge about this saga, should get this handbook as it’s simply too gorgeous to let go and for those with no knowledge, this would be a perfect opportunity to get yourself acquainted with it before 18 Days feature begins.

Highly highly recommended for all comic book lovers, just a reminder again this is not the compete story but acts like a handbook to the series which may or may not see the light of the day but if you are like me, seeing the ideas and artwork behind the series might just make you a convert as well.

You can find it over at Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Book Depository. Lastly here’s a small teaser about this project.

Note: All images courtesy of Liquid Comics & Perspective Studios.

3 comments:

  1. This is a cool look at something completely outside my box. Love the post.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks Justin, I hope you give it a try. This book really makes you hope that the series gets made.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Wow. Those pictures are amazing! The color! Wow. Thanks for sharing this one. Sounds wonderful.

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...