An alien seeking salvation for his planet falls prey to the vices of human beings in the graphic novel adaptation of The Man Who Fell to Earth.
Based on the 1976 science fiction film of the same name, which was itself adapted from a 1963 novel, this story revolves around Thomas Jerome Newton, an alien who lands on Earth. He appears to be a normal man in most respects. Newton trades on advanced alien technology to amass a fortune, with the goal of sending crucial water supplies to his home planet. He runs up against industrial intrigue, espionage, and his own budding addictions to alcohol and television, leading to a quiet, tragic conclusion.
The graphic novel preserves much of the look of the film, including the appearance of Newton, modeled on actor David Bowie. In a more difficult and impressive task, the art also delivers many of the feelings evoked by the story, including loneliness, isolation, and resignation. Newton has room for love in his heart, but it’s squeezed out as the story proceeds. He begins the book savoring every drop of water he tastes; by the end, his easy substitution of gin for water is a clear marker of just how far he has been pulled down on Earth.
At the end of the book come fun contextual extras, including commentary on character designs, scripts, and pages of on-set photographs from the film.
A classic tale about an alien who is used and corrupted by the worst elements of human society, The Man Who Fell to Earth is a memorable graphic novel whose cautionary notes still ring true.
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