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Darren Aronofsky’s 'Noah' brings religious comics into the limelight

Cover art for 'The Revelation.'
Cover art for 'The Revelation.'
Kingstone Media

Films based on the Holy Bible are as popular now as they were in the 1950s and 1960s when studios gave us epics like “The Ten Commandments,” “Ben-Hur,” “The Greatest Story Ever Told,” “King of Kings,” “Samson and Delilah,” and many others. Recently, “Son of God” made quite an impact in cinemas and there’s plenty more coming our way. Ridley Scott’s “Exodus” tells the tale of Christian Bale’s Moses leading the Jews out of Egypt. Nicolas Cage will help those seeking answers to the disappearances of loved ones and face the disastrous consequences of being “Left Behind.”

Darren Aronofsky’s “Noah” hits Blu-ray and DVD giving those who didn’t watch the movie in theaters an opportunity to see the latest Hollywood Biblical saga. Many might not know that it was actually based on a graphic novel Aronofsky and co-writer Ari Handel made with Canadian artist Niko Henrichon. It wasn’t the first time the Bible was adapted into comic book form.

Kingstone Media has been publishing Bible-based comics for a number of years. Their books cover several genres from science fiction to historical and present-day inspirational tales. After viewing “Noah” and seeing several pages of the graphic novel, my curiosity led me to seek out three titles from the Christian-based publisher’s past releases to explore.

“Job” is one of the latest books Kingstone has released. The famous account from the Bible is adapted by writer Ben Avery. He’s well-known for his work on George R.R. Martin’s “The Hedge Knight,” “The Oz/Wonderland Chronicles,” and several others. He takes the words of scripture and breaks them down so they’re understandable for anyone twelve years old and up. The bottom of each page features a footnote stating the Bible chapters and verses it addresses. Jeff Slemons delivers wonderful artwork that accents Avery’s words with strikingly expressive images. Slemons is a veteran penciler who’s worked on Micronauts, Suicide Squad, "Captain America vs MODOK and AIM," and Frank Frazetta's "John Carter One Minute Later," to name a few.

“The Revelation” gives us writer and Kingstone Media CEO Art Aryis’s interpretion of the Apostle John’s vision of the future as given to him by God. He gets literal at times as does artist Danny Bulandi when it comes down to translating the prophetic book. Bulandi loves taking the Biblical descriptions of certain creatures and adding in his own monster-like fantasy elements to make them even more extraordinary and appealing to comic book readers.

Both Art Aryis and Danny Bulandi teamed up for an exciting reworking of “Samson.” The two inject loads of visual goodness that rouse up memories of sword and sandal epics like “Spartacus,” “Hercules,” “Conan,” and “Clash of the Titans.” It has all the romantic and fantasy elements found in the great tales of Greek and Norse mythology. However, Samson’s tale is made even more sensational through the knowledge that it’s based on true events. This is a great way to introduce readers to the original strong man from the Bible.

Kingstone Media has even more comic book fun coming in the near future. They’ll soon be releasing the true Biblical account of “Noah” to coincide with Darren Aronofsky’s vision of the Great Flood and the life of the Man of God. The supernatural action/thriller “The Remaining” hits bookshelves in August followed by the movie in September. It stars Alexa Vega (the “Spy Kids” movies, “Repo! The Genetic Opera”) and is produced and directed by Casey La Scala (“Donnie Darko,” the upcoming “Amityville”).

“Job” is available now in print and Kindle editions.

“The Revelation” is available now in print and Kindle editions.

“Samson” is available now in print and Kindle editions.

“Noah” is available now in print and Kindle editions.

“The Remaining” is available now in print.