Next month a graphic novel based on the 9-11 Report from the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks will be released. The print version of the report was a bestseller
and a National Book Award finalist in 2004. The graphic novel named The 9/11 Report: A Graphic Adaptation
was created by industry veterans Sid Jacobson and Ernie Colon. Jacobsen created the Richie Rich
comics and Colon drew both Richie Rich
. Jacobsen and Colon have also both served as editors for comic book publishers. A Journal Gazette article
about the graphic novel says it includes comic captions, drawings and onomatopoetic words like "Whooom!" and "R-rrumble."
The book condenses the nearly 600-page federal report released by the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States to fewer than 150 pages, and the creators say they hope their book will help attract young readers and others who might be overwhelmed by the original document. With sans-serif captions, artist renderings, charts and sound-describing words such as "Whooom!" and "R-rrumble," the adaptation recounts the attacks with parallel timelines of the four hijacked planes.
But can a topic as massive and sobering as Sept. 11 be dealt with effectively in the pages of a comic book?
When a first draft of the book came across his desk, Hill and Wang publisher Thomas LeBien said, he was "absolutely struck with it potentially being a wonderful idea."
Jacobson and Colon worked hard to "make sure we were both honest and respectful," LeBien said.
The article says two members of the 9/11 Commission, Thomas Kean and Lee Hamilton, wrote a foreword to the book. The comic book has also received a favorable review from comic book legend Stan Lee.
"Never before have I seen a non-fiction book as beautifully and compellingly written and illustrated as The 9/11 Report, A Graphic Adaptation. I cannot recommend it too highly. It will surely set the standard for all future works of contemporary history, graphic or otherwise, and should be required reading in every home, school and library."
However, not everyone is excited about the idea of the 9/11 Commission Report being published in the form of a graphic novel. The Washington Post
recently published an editorial by an American Airlines captain called Wrong Topic for a Comic Book
While this is the first graphic novel based on the 9-11 Commission Report it is actually not the first graphic novel about the terrorist attack on September 11th, 2001. There was also a two-part series of graphic novels about 9-11 featuring stories by comic book artists and writers called 9-11: Artists Respond, Volume 1
and 9-11: September 11, 2001 (Stories to Remember, Volume 2)
that were released in 2002.