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New Graphic Novel Captures Essence of Andre

 
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Overview
 

Summary: Andre the Giant always stood taller than every other professional wrestler. Box Brown's new graphic novel shows how the legend has blended with the facts.
 
Author: Box Brown
 
criteria 1
A
13/ 14


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Positives


engaging stories; nice artwork that captures Andre's spirit; fast read; entertaining throughout

Negatives


not nearly long enough (but that speaks more to Andre's personality than it does to the artist/writer's ability)


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Posted June 18, 2014 by

Andre the Giant loomed larger than life.

I mean, he was called “the Giant,” so to borrow journalism parlance, it’s not like his moniker buried the lead. His exploits both inside the ring and out have grown over the years, reaching an almost mythical proportion in the years after Andre’s death. Mere words, it seems, could scarcely touch the surface of what made the man a giant.

Fortunately, writer/artist Box Brown has captured the essence of the Giant in a new graphic novel, Andre the Giant: Life and Legend. Andre’s sheer physicality can be easily visualized through the simple (yet extremely effective) drawings, showing him towering over even his

Andre
Box Brown’s drawings are an integral part of showcasing Andre the Giant’s legend. (Photo used with permission from artist Box Brown)

biggest foes.

The artwork also captures Andre’s childlike joy with which he took in the world. Traveling is difficult for larger people, so it’s downright torture for a 7’4”, 500-plus pound wrestler. On flights to Japan, Andre would have to completely flush out his system before boarding a plane; using a cramped airline restroom would defy the laws of physics for a man of his bulk.

Brown blends the spectacle of Andre’s wrestling career and growing celebrity (including a famous chat with David Letterman and his co-starring role in The Princess Bride), but he never shies away from the darker sides of the Giant. Time is given to Andre’s distant (almost nonexistent) relationship with his daughter, and more than a few tales recount his frequent drinking binges.

The book is a quick read (I finished it in one sitting), but the stories will stick with you. I still find myself sharing them with friends, as we laugh about Andre before getting saddened by the fact he’s no longer here. Thankfully, we have the videos, the stories, and the books to help us keep him alive.

An old adage says “when the legend becomes fact, print the legend.”

Brown has printed fact and legend. With Andre the Giant, is there really any difference?

To order this book, click here.



Strother Kevin Hall

 
Strother Kevin Hall (just call him Kevin if you meet him) lives in Georgetown, Ky., where he is an avid comic collector and a writer for hire. He is the co-author of "Lost Change and Loose Cousins," a collection of short stories and essays.


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