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The Example
posted July 28, 2009
 

imageCreators: Tom Taylor, Colin Wilson
Publishing Information: Gestalt Publishing, comic book, March 2009, no price given
Ordering Numbers: 9780977562848 (ISBN13)

Separated from the other things with which it arrived in my mailbox, the 11-page comic book The Example poses something of a mystery. I'm guessing it's a promotional item for the forthcoming Brief Case book from Gestalt Publishing of which it will be a part. It reads exactly like the adaptation of a short play that it turns out to be: a man and a woman on a train platform debating the briefcase left there by a departing traveler, and what taking certain positions or having certain fears says about them. It feels artificial and never stops being a play, but that could be intentional depending on how writer Tom Taylor wishes for it to be staged. Colin Wilson's take on Taylor's script is well-crafted but unfortunately lacks the liveliness of his sketchbook roughs -- this is crucial. For such a slight subject, it feels strangely underperformed a bit, like there could have been more to the back-and-forth than what we see here. The story doesn't deserve the reams of support material that accompany it. I think its greatest value is as a spotlight on adaptation techniques when it comes to dialogue-heavy works.