Sunday, October 29, 2006

Scary Monster from the Past


Anybody remember having to read Beowulf in English class? For some of us, it wasn't a *groan* chore. We saw behind the forced reading to find the adventure.

Dude, Beowulf went swimming with sea monsters! As an old fart, he killed a dragon! And in the main part of this poem, he plays dead while a giant bigfoot-type monster (named Grendel) prowls through the room, and then jumps up and wrestles the beast, yanking its arm out of the socket! Then he follows the trail of blood underwater to the hellhole Grendel came from, and fights the critter's even meaner mom!
First is the paperback cover of John Gardner's Grendel, which tells the Beowulf tale (part anyway) from the monster's point of view, in first person.
It made a big impression on me in high school, as evidenced by this relic from the past -- a version of the cover that I drew in 11th-grade art class.
See you tomorrow in our countdown to Halloween with some characters created by Jeff Rice (that's a hint) that were an inspoiration for a TV show last season (another hint).

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