The Hard Hitting Word for Word Bible Graphic Novel (Review)


When you discover that you are about to read about a Bible comic, you may be tempted to skip this post. After all aren’t comic books just for kids. Some might be, but be warned graphic novels are not your typical comic. And this is not for young kids. It is actually rated for readers 15 and up.

Graphic novels as a medium are intense and visual ways to experience a story. And the stories they tell have been the basis for popular movies and shows. Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead, Frank Miller’s Spartan adventure 300, and Alan Moore’s V for Vendetta are among some of the most notable.

The Bible is filled with stories that are powerful and vivid. But in an age that is dominated by YouTube, blockbuster films, and special effects, the vibrancy of these stories can be lost on the modern reader. That is something Simon Amadeus Pillario is looking to change. He is the creator of the Word for Word Bible Comic (link), which hopes to present the stories of the Bible, using the actual words of Scripture, as a set of graphic novels that are “historically accurate, unabridged, and untamed”. One of Pillario’s goals is to invite graphic novel fans, many of whom may not otherwise read a Bible, to pick up the Scriptures. But, it is also for Christians who want to visually experience these familiar stories.

When I firsKickStarter_Judges_originalt heard of the Word for Word Comic, it was through Kickstarter. And I thought, what am amazing idea to create a graphic novel version of the Bible. I quickly backed the project.

The first Kickstarter, was back in May 2014, for the book of Judges. And while the project is not finished yet, the digital editions that have been sent to backers are incredible. If you are a fan of graphic novels and want to experience the Scriptures in a “hard-hitting” new way, then you are going to love the Word for Word Bible Comic.

When Pillario says the project is historically accurate, it is because he has studied the Scripture, sought opinions on challenging passages, and done research into the cities, culture, and people of the time period in which the book takes place. Much of the research is captured on his blog. Here is an excerpt on some of the research that was done on the city of Jerusalem (link).

In Judges, Jerusalem is a town called Jebus. In order to draw it as it would have looked I first needed to find out what the topography of Jerusalem’s steep hills and deep valleys. I was very happy to discover this is something that has been extensively research and even modelled before.

And here is an image (used with permission) that captures some of the research that was done on the Philistines, who of course are a major part of the story in Judges (link).Philistines depicted colour

The graphic novel is unabridged. Every word of the text is captured and presented in the comic panel format. There are no additions, subtractions, or commentary provided. You are reading the Bible. This one just happens to be amazingly illustrated. The translation that is being used for the Kickstarter edition is the World English Bible (WEB) translation. Pillario’s goal is to find a publisher, making the comic more widely available, and switch out the WEB for a more popular translation.

The Word for Word Bible Comic is untamed because many of the stories in the Bible contain adult themes. Murder, revenge, rape, and adultery are all topics that fill its pages. When one is confronted with these in a visual format, the stories become that much more memorable. Let’s face it Samson wiping out a thousand warriors with a jaw bone is going to be grizzly. That is why the book is rated for readers that are 15 and above.

samson-turbine-for-web hi resAfter reading this you may be bummed that you missed your chance to get the Book of Judges, but if you hurry you can still back the next book that will be available: Joshua. And some of the options even include getting a copy of Judges (link).

One thought on “The Hard Hitting Word for Word Bible Graphic Novel (Review)

  1. Pingback: Hard Hitting Bible Graphic Novels Hit the Shelves | Dead Heroes Don't Save

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