Friday, February 12, 2016

The Divine Comedy

This is a book I have "had on my list" for a long time. I have always felt like The Divine Comedy by Dante was very influential in our society specifically with Western concepts of the Christian after life. I never read it in high school, which is odd because I went to Catholic school, so it went on my list of classics to tackle as an adult.

I really enjoy epic poems so I was pleased that The Divine Comedy was written in that format. I found the language beautiful and amazingly descriptive. So descriptive in fact that I had a conversation with a friend of mine about how to best adapt this story to some kind of visual format. That leads me to what is in my opinion the biggest & maybe only flaw in this story. There is no plot & it parts of it are excruciatingly boring to read! The story is essentially a written tour through the levels of each after life domain. So while the imagery in Inferno is very interesting to read and see how each level of Hell is described with it's various demons & punishments each book gets less interesting. Some of the concepts of how he describes Purgatorio are interesting, I very much liked the visual of the stairs but I got to the point of having to reward myself for finishing it. The same happened with Paridosio.

Perhaps others do not have this issue but I really like to follow some sort of journey, whether it's a classic hero's journey or just any old journey. I enjoy being concerned about the characters & watching the growth happen. I found very little of that in this book which is why I struggled with it so much. I feel like the best quality of The Divine Comedy is how visually descriptive it is. I had no trouble what so every coming up with an image for what the author was describing but as I discussed with my friend it would make a terrible movie. People do not pay to see movies with no plots. We decided that Dante's classic should really be adapted to a manga or graphic novel format (unless it already has been), that way you get the splendor of the stunning images he created and are more engaged throughout the story.

No comments:

Post a Comment