Review: Martin Luther King and the Montgomery Story
One of the best releases of the last decade of comics is Top Shelf‘s March trilogy which details the life of Congressman John Lewis. Lewis was an instrumental individual in the Civil Rights movement. That successful graphic novel lead Top Shelf to partner with the Fellowship of Reconciliation to publish a new edition of the Martin Luther King and The Montgomery Story. The comic is an amazing piece of history that has been used to promote peaceful, non-violent protests around the world, being translated into numerous languages.
The 16-page comic is a wonderful summary of the Civil Rights movement taking individuals through the methods and thought process used to protest Montgomery’s policy that African Americans were to ride in the back of the bus. The narration is from an individual named “Jones” and his experience through the protest. After the story wraps up, there’s a step-by-step checklist that breaks down the exact methodology used and also how it’s been used throughout the world, in particular, to win India’s independence.
Top Shelf focused not just on reprinting the comic in modern standards, they used similar paper and coloring from the time that it originally was printed. This looks like a copy you might have held decades ago. A fantastic recreation of an important piece of comic and civil rights history.
Everyone should check this out, to learn about United States history, but also how comics have been used to create change and in political movements. Comics have been political since their formation over 100 years ago and have been a tool to fight for political change ever since.
While it’s difficult to get a print copy, there are a few options to at least read it digitally.
Story: Alfred Hassler, Benton Resnik Art: Sy Barry
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy