1992: Allan W. Eckert’s Tecumseh!

Allan W. Eckert’s Tecumseh! (1992) by Timothy Truman adapted from a play by Allan W. Eckert.

What’s this then? Another Truman graphic novel?

Yes. We’re still in very much within Truman’s major area of interest: Frontiers life and Native American history, but this time it’s an adaptation of an outdoors play by Allan W. Eckert.

Eclipse has published so many overwritten adaptations of things that try to shoehorn as many words as possible onto each page, but Truman is more successful in creating a real comic.

The dialogue that he does keep isn’t… er… very good, though.

And aren’t we all just bored to death with having a really, really, really ugly person that’s going to turn out to being totally evil and mad? It’s positively Greek.

You gotta love that very-not-impressed expression of the woman in the last panel there, though.

There’s plenty of captions here telling us what would take too long to show, but they weirdly veer from third person to first person without any rhyme or reason.

And this isn’t Truman’s best artwork. Many of these pages I wouldn’t have been able to guess was Truman at all, as he often abandons his scratchy, dirty, visceral line for the one that looks like it’s from a 50s Classics Illustrated.

But some panels are more recognisably Trumanesqe. And, yes, surprise, it turns out that the ugly guy was evil.

Excellent foreshadowing!

I wondered whether this was based on a true story, and the page that explains how this graphic novel came to be doesn’t really explain. Semi-historical, perhaps?

Truman says that he’s done something called Wilderness “in a non-traditional format” before Tecumseh!, which makes me wonder just what format that is.

And since that was apparently published before this volume, perhaps I should just read that next. (My notes had it the other way around. Stupid notes!)

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