Stratford Zoo Midnight Revue Presents: Macbeth, by Ian Lendler and Zack Giallongo

Review copy provided by First Second.

Best Macbeth Evar.

Okay, so. This is a comic–a graphic novel, but I think a one-off, just long enough to be its own volume. And the conceit is that the animals at the Stratford Zoo are putting on Macbeth after hours. Macbeth is a lion who eats everybody else. It is hilarious. The shorthanding of the play, the audience reactions, the casting, the whole nine yards. You will probably spot Macduff’s punchline coming, but it’s still funny. The panel with Macbeth, Lady Macbeth, and the rubber ducky is my favorite. It’s just. It’s very, very silly. If you take a very, very serious view of Macbeth and will not be able to bear jokes and zoo animals applied to it, this is so not for you.

Some of the jokes will be entirely at the level that I expect my godchildren to get. This is a fabulous way to get them all the very basic cultural references to Macbeth they will need to navigate as tiny cultured individuals, and I intend to use it that way. There are several other jokes that will go over their heads, and that’s fine too, because it’s not a book that will shut them out when they don’t get one joke.

I did not expect to particularly like this book, honestly. When it arrived in today’s mail, I was coming home from a used bookstore accident with several things I am incredibly excited about, and I thought, eh, well, we’ll give it a shot, how long can it take? And I was so very pleasantly surprised. Definitely keeping it, definitely sharing with the godkids, who love comics and silliness.

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