Holy Cow Entertainment Ravanayan Vol 01 (Issues 1,2 & 3) Paperback – 2013
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Once long ago, in ancient India, an epic war was fought between dharma and adharma. It shook an empire stretching across three worlds, ended a centuries-old reign, and marked the beginning of a new age. The victors are worshipped as gods to this day and stories of their greatness are part of everyday conversation. This is the story of the one who lost.Ravanayan is a bold new comic book series that retells Valmiki's classic epic from the point of view of its antagonist -- Ravana, king of Lanka, leader of the rakshasa nation, conqueror of worlds and vanquisher of gods. Creators Vijayendra Mohanty and Vivek Goel explore the values inherent in the Ramayana and retell the immortal story as something more than a simple tale of good triumphing over evil. This account of Ravana's life re-imagines much of what is held to be true about one of India's most loved tales and in the process, takes the reader on an enchanting quest for the very meanings of right and wrong, good and evil, dharma and adharma.This book is different from The Ramayana as the protagonist here is Ravana instead of Rama. The creators believe that the land of Lanka had prospered under the rule of the mighty Ravana, and as a result, they have come up with this book to pay their tribute to this influential ruler, addressing him as The Lord.This is the life story of the great grandson of Brahma, a perfect hybrid between a Sage and a Rakshasi. This is the life story of Ravana before he abducted Sita. This is the story of the one who lost! Ravanayan Vol 1 collects a paperback compilation of the sold out issues 1, 2 & 3 along with extras and behind the scenes materials.
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When I buy a graphic novel I want to be retold the same story with not just a different perspective, but a much larger graphic imagery. Like how do you imagine Lord Brahma, for instance. Well, read this book and look at how it is re-imagined by the Vivek Goel, the illustrator.
It is an excellent book with a new perspective at the Ramayan, from Ravan's eyes, and of course an amazing, larger than life visual imagery. My kudos to Vivek Goel. This is just the beginning, I am buying your whole series.
Why? You think I dont know how to evaluate a comic? Or the Art work? Or the content?
I have any only two topics, on the basis of which I am writing this review. 1. Story 2. Artwork
1. Story: Here, Ravana, actually Dasananda, "decides", upon the request of Brahma, to walk along the path of evil, COMPLETELY surrendering himself to the path of Fate..... Frankly, nothing is more pathetic than this.... Fate is nothing but a reflection of what we do. When we do something, Fate results from it and hence, we always see what we want to see, for we always do what we want to do. This entire collection, is nothing more than a Pathetic attempt to defile the glorious name that Ravana made for himself. Be it something really praiseworthy or henious, Ravana was always TOTALLY 100% incharge of his own fate, of his own decisions. To insult him, by saying he was going in accordance with fate, is an insult to Ramayana and an insult to the very Genius, Champion, Arrogant, Wise, Intelligent and Cunning PErsonality, that Ravana was...
Hence, this story, is Pathetic..
2. Artwork: Is the art work here... really THAT great? There are other comics out there that are WAYY better than this one, in terms of artwork... am surprised that this was able to attract so many readers... perhaps its the pathetic state of affairs that our generation has read the Ramayana so less, that they find works like these as totally new.... Read works of Devdutt Pattanaik in order to get a better idea about Hindu Mythology and culture. Not only are they interesting, as there are so many interesting stories, but it also caters to readers from any religion or culture. Or, if you are SOLELY interested in a Comic book version of the Ramayana alone, then you can go for the series (only 3 books) by Shamik Dasgupta - now THAT is what I would call art work.. Splendid mix of colours, dynamic landscapes and a modern retelling of an Age Old Epic. I mean, if you are of a light heart and appreciate retellings, then you would definitely love it. Though I would agree this is way better than SUBMITTING oneself to Fate and playing along like a Fool, like this Set of books makes Ravana to be...
So, in both these categories, these set of books were totally unable to capture either my attention, or my interest. And I will NOT be going for the series final book... There will be nothing there...
And this review is my review. Dont behave like children and make personal comments out of this. If you like this, I'll be having you save 500 bucks. But if you dont like my review, do please go on ahead and get a copy of it. And I hope you enjoy it... for 500/- is no easy share of money, I say!
An experienced buyer.