Tuesday, April 22, 2008
Coleridge & Emerson's Ancient Mariner reissued
I've been intending to post a blog about this for a while, giving a wider retrospective of Hunt Emerson's work but various things have delayed this blog of late so without further ado I'll just focus on this one book...
Knockabout have re-published Hunt Emerson's splendid version of The Rime of the Ancient Mariner in hardback. The book was originally published in softback years ago, but Hunt's work always deserves a more enduring format so this hardback edition is perfect.
Within a striking new cover, Knockabout's The Rime of the Ancient Mariner sees Hunt adapt Samuel Taylor Coleridge's 200 year old poem into a fantastic and often surreal graphic novel (coloured by Carol Bennett). Sight gags abound, depicting Coleridge's descriptions with an askew and inventive way such as "ice mast high came floating by" illustrated as giant ice creams bobbing about in the sea. I could go on, but dry text such as this doesn't do such scenes justice. Better to buy the book and enjoy it for yourself as each page is a delight.
Hunt's work has always featured lively humour coupled with a great and unique sense of design, and this book, one of the artist's finest achievements, is no exception. This is proper comics, utilizing the medium to its best advantage.
Hunt has also recently updated his website http://largecow.com/ where you can buy his books (including the one reviewed here) and even purchase original art! Brilliant!
Hunt's work also appears in The Beano every week, illustrating the comic strip Rats with Laura Howell.
Recently Hunt appeared on YouTube with his family (that's Hunt in the green T-shirt in the video below) performing their version of 1971 Middle of the Road single Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep. The new Geordie version by the Emersons being Chorpy Chorpy Cheepnis! The video became a hit on the internet and was covered on regional news. Take a look. 30,000 hits and counting: