Tag Archives: johnny appleseed

Review: Johnny Appleseed

Like most kids growing up, I loved watching cartoons, I watched before I went to school and when I came back from school. I watched the requisite cartoons most kids did, such as the Warner Brothers staple, Looney Tunes. I also watched the cartoons specifically made for the kid who bought toys like GI Joe and MASK. One of the few cartoon studios, that pretty much showed me that the full range of emotions can be packed into a cartoon, were the ones done by Disney.

Of course, I enjoyed the shenanigans of the various characters, like Chip N’ Dale and Pluto. Then there were the almost human qualities that Donald Duck showed, specifically the jealousy he had towards Mickey Mouse. The one Disney feature, that stays with me to this day is, American Legends, where they retold each story, my favorite being John Henry, but my second favorite after being Johnny Appleseed, as both of their stories captured the American Dream as ideologized by writers and reporters before but told masterfully on celluloid, by the geniuses at Disney. In Paul Buhle and Noah Van Sciver’s Johnny Appleseed, the reader gets a scholarly look at the man behind the legend, John Chapman.

Buhle does speak plainly, as he quick to dismiss most of the American legends, that has been idolized by popular culture, either as purely fictional or overtly sentimentalized versions of the real people. He takes us back to his birth in a rural cabin, to his rough upbringing, the loss of his parents and his becoming a man in the rise of the wild frontier.  He generally lived off the land, did not want to take of the Native Americans and did not want to have slaves, a good person, one that rarely gets told, if ever. By book’s end, we learn of his many influences, how he has touched every person he come across, forever altering their lives, shifting how Americans understand trees, fruits and plants, being very much the dichotomy of what people perceive as the “American Hobo” and the true meaning behind Arbor Day.

Overall, an excellent graphic novel that takes apart legend and lore to give the reader the truth of who really was, making him even more indelible to the reader. Chapman’s history as dissected by Buhle gives the reader both a comparative and true portrait of John Chapman. The art by Van Scivier is gorgeous and radiant. Altogether, an excellent book, that the world has deserved, especially since the very idea of America is being challenged.

Story: Paul Buhle Art: Noah Van Sciver
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy

Classics Illustrated Now on ComiXology

om5rbDwToday Trajectory, Inc. entered into a digital distribution agreement with comiXology to make available Trajectory’s Classic Illustrated line of comics and graphic novels to comiXology fans around the globe.

One of the well-known brands in the comic book publishing arena, The Classics Illustrated line consists of illustrated adaptations of traditional literature, non-fiction and biographies featuring the world’s greatest stories by the worlds greatest authors including: Charles Dickens, William Shakespeare, Victor Hugo, H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, The Last of the Mohicans, War of the Worlds, The Pearl Princess, Treasure Island, The Count of Monte Cristo, Robin Hood, Snow White, Jane Eyre, The Three Musketeers and over one hundred more.

To celebrate the announcement, Trajectory and comiXology have made over 15 issues available today and within several months, the entire 120 issues run of the Classics Illustrated will be available to experience in comiXology’s Guided View and in CMX-HD on compatible iOS and Android devices.

The complete launch list is:

Classics Illustrated #1: The Three Musketeers
Classics Illustrated #4: The Last of the Mohicans
Classics Illustrated #13: Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde
Classics Illustrated #26: Frankenstein
Classics Illustrated #47: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
Classics Illustrated #54: The Man in the Iron Mask
Classics Illustrated #64: Treasure Island
Classics Illustrated #124: The War of the Worlds
Classics Illustrated #128: Macbeth
Classics Illustrated #134: Romeo and Juliette
Classics Illustrated #153: The Invisible Man
Classics Illustrated Junior #501: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
Classics Illustrated Junior #506: The Three Little Pigs
Classics Illustrated Junior #515: Johnny Appleseed
Classics Illustrated Junior #519: Paul Bunyan