viernes, 10 de mayo de 2013

Photo-review: Los Mitos de Cthulhu

I do not read a lot of comic books. I do not know if it because when I had time to read everything I wanted I did not have the money to buy them and now that I (could) have the money, I do not have the time to read them all. So, at this very moment I limit my readings to Walking Dead and my always-beloved Hellblazer. But today thanks to a friend of mine I bring you something different that, unfortunately, I have not been able to find in English. It is the Spanish reprint of Los Mitos de Cthulhu, a collection of Lovecraft tales drawn by the Uruguay-born Argentinian artist Alberto Breccia, an artist mostly known, at least within the Spanish-speaking world, as the author of Mort Cinder and El Eternauta. I have not read these two so I am afraid I cannot compare Los Mitos with his previous work, but I must admit that I am happily surprised by the content of this volume.
Los Mitos collects nine Lovecraft stories, most of them of the very popular kind, in only 124 pages. This means Breccia and Buscaglia (the adapter of six of the stories) made an excellent synthesis job, because although abbreviated, there is not much missing in each story. This summary also makes it a slow-reading comic, with a lot of text per page, nothing like a light superhero comic, something that is hardly surprising taking into account that most of Lovecraft’s stories have more of inner thoughts than dialogue. Another aspect where Breccia shines giving a Lovecraftian feel to his stories is in his drawings of the Mythos creatures and the maddening environment of HPL’s stories. At the beginning of each story, drawings tend to be realistic and clean, but at the story progresses lines begin to blur and scenes become confusing. You can certainly see some of the creatures in the pictures, but more often than not, they are only suggested, as if they were tricks of our own mind. In the end, if they are things humankind is not supposed to know, how are we going to be able to draw them? 

Here you have some examples of what I am saying:
The son of Yog-Sothoth, from “The Dunwich Horror”
Great Cthulhu from “Call of Cthulhu”

And my absolute favorite:
The Mi-Go, from “The Whisperer in Darkness.” Doesn’t look a little bit like Goya’s Capricho Nº43, “The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters”?

The stories that appear in the book are:

“El Ceremonial” (“The Festival”) There is a preview with the whole story here.
“La Cosa en el Umbral” (“The Thing on the Doorstep”)
“La Sombra sobre Innsmouth” (“The Shadow over Innsmouth”)
“La Ciudad sin Nombre” (“The Nameless City”)
“El Horror de Dunwich” (“The Dunwich Horror”)
“El Llamado de Cthulhu” (“The Call of Cthulhu”)
“El Color que Cayó del Cielo” (“The Color Out of Space)
“El Morardor de las Tinieblas” (“The Haunter of the Dark”)
“El que susurra en las Tinieblas” (“The Whisperer in Darkness”)

If you have enough Spanish under your belt or if you have read Lovecraft’s stories enough times that you don’t really need to understand the language to know what is going on, give it a try. If not, how much do you like art books?

“Los Mitos de Cthulhu”
20,90€ (hardback)

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