Monday, August 16, 2010

Scott Pilgrim

Sometimes I think I would make a great Young Adult librarian. A lot of my interests actually fall in that realm. Graphic Novels, music, film, technology...

Once again recently I've had the experience of seeing a film and reading the book at just about the same time. It's always interesting for me to compare books and movies and what worked in each medium. Almost always the book is better than the movie (the notable exception being Field Of Dreams).

This time around it's Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. I went through and read all six volumes of the graphic novel right before seeing the film that was just released. Like usual, the books are better.

Don't get me wrong. I really enjoyed the film a lot. I thought it was great, a lot of fun, and very innovative with its mix of real live action and video game graphics mixed together. But as is often the case there was so much missing that was in the books.

I had my doubts going into the film as I wondered how they could possibly cram the contents of six graphic novels into a film that wasn't even two hours long. Well the answer is, they didn't. A lot was missing. I was upset that they didn't have the battle in Honest Ed's for instance. Envy Adams character really gets the short thrift. In the books she is much more 3D, complex, and comes off as sympathetic, in the film she's just a bitch. (Spoiler alert) In the books at the end we are surprised when Stephen Stills comes out of the closet. This doesn't happen in the film. In fact the guy who he falls for, who is a really cool minor character in the books, doesn't appear at all in the film. The entire sub plot of the band recording their album is completely missing. A huge plot element that is missing is the fact that Ramona disappears for several months leaving Scott to wonder what is going on.

One of the more interesting changes is how Knives Chau comes across. In the books she becomes a stalker and loves Scott till the end. In the film she ends up being a really cool character who we have a lot of sympathy for in the end. By the end of the film she almost seems like the most mature character in the film.

So go see the film. I highly recommend it for the young adult audience and those who are young at heart and still play video games. ;-)

but as always, do yourself a favor and read the book!

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