Thursday, December 30, 2010
I Am Legend by Robert Matheson
I Am Legend by Robert Matheson, in this volume, is a novella compiled with ten other short stories by the author who made a name for himself writing for the Twilight Zone and Star Trek. I had heard that the movie did not do justice to the novella and I have to say, I agree. The movie is different in the typical Hollywood way, infusing the story with some pathos that simply doesn’t do the original story any justice. Matheson’s original vision is far darker and the ending is more perverse. No doubt, the graphic novel does the story more justice than the movie.
As for the ten short stories, they all have very typical and often predictable “surprise” endings. It’s rather like reading episodes of the Twilight Zone without the cool music and resonant voice-over leading into and away from each story. Some are good. Some are just silly. None of them is as good as the novella. Unless you really really want to read the entire book, you can stop after reading the novella and move onto something else more interesting.