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7 Indian comics based on mythology

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Right from our childhood, we have been hearing stories from Indian mythology. Characters from Mahabharata and Ramayana especially ruled our childhood.

Taking a cue from the love for Indian mythologies, comics have always satiated the hunger for cartoon lovers.

Here is a list of seven cartoons based on mythologies

Ravanayan

ravanayanThis ten part comic series created by Vivek Goel and Vijayendra Mohanty and published by Holy Cow Entertainment is the perfect example of depicting an old story with a contemporary twist. It is the retelling of Ramayana with Ravana as the protagonist and is the best way of engrossing children and young adults in this cult epic.

Shiva- The Legend of the Immortals

shiva-the-legends-of-the-immortal-book-1-400x400-imadk92pazznuzyq

This series by Vimanika Comics depicts the tales of Shiva revealing various aspects of his convoluted personality. Till date, the series comprises of two books. The first book deals with ‘story of the origin of the universe and Lord Shiva’s marriage to Sati.’ The second book ‘dwells extremely on the love story of Lord Shiva and Parvati, their marriage and the battle between Kartikeya and Tarkasur.’

 

ChandamamaChandamama1

This classic Indian monthly magazine started by B. Nagi Reddy and Chakrapani, and edited by Kodavatiganti Kutumba Rao for 28 years is the longest running comic in the Indianmythology sector. First published in Telugu and Tamil, it was published in Hindi in 1949 and now runs across 12 languages.

Aghori

aghoriWritten by Ram Iyer, published by Holy Cow Entertainment, and illustrated by Vivek Goel and Gaurav Srivastav, this comic introduces us to the intriguing life and culture of Aghoris. They are ascetic Shaiva Sadhus engaging in post-mortem rituals, sometimes involving cannibalism. It comprises large readership due to its marvelous mythological tales of these Shiva devotees.

 

I Am Kalki

The tenth incarnation of Vishnu is Kalki Avatar or holocaust. Kalki’s divine mission is to destroy the demons of corruption and ignorance. Kalki is a dark, slender, handsome and youthful boy who gradually discovers that he has many powers in his control. He begins a new life in the city, and behaves like any average teenager; but in the night, he goes around hunting down enemies of humanity the modern day demons.

This book of three complete volumes with the fourth on its way has engaged readers in the heroic story of this celebrated figure immensely.

Krishna: A Journey Within

krishna-webThis astounding fable of wit and wisdom by Abhishek Singh is ‘a searing, human portrayal of Lord Krishna’ which journeys along the pastimes that have swayed through ages. ‘It is the final confrontation between fire and man’s consuming greed to conquer all and the supreme power of the Divine Spirit.’

 

Pandavas 5

Exclusively produced in broadcast partnership with Disney/BeunaVista International, this anime inspired a story from the house of RME revolves around the adventures of five uniquely Chandamamatalented Pandavas and their journey from rigorous training at Dronacharya’s hermitage to winning at a competition in the city of Panchal. This multi-layered story full of delicious maneuver shows how Pandavas excel at the art of warfare and aesthetics along with the resentful competition from their cousins, the Kauravas.

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The Scion of Ikshvaku: A retelling of Ramayana by Amish Tripathi

The book is simple yet written nicely. It can get you engrossed right away. Everything is explained well, it is graphic enough for a reader to play it as a movie in their head.

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'The Scion of Ikshvaku' is based on Ramayana, though it deviates from the original epic. Wikipedia
'The Scion of Ikshvaku' is based on Ramayana, though it deviates from the original epic. Wikipedia
  • Amish Tripathi’s ‘The Scion of Ikshvaku’ is a retelling of Ramayana.
  • The book is a surprise to all the readers who think that it will follow the conventional story line.
  • The book has garnered good responses and has also built anticipation for the other ones in the series.

Amish Tripathi is famous for taking elements from Hindu mythology and adding his own imagination to concoct exciting and thrilling reads. His earlier books on Shiva got rave reviews. And now he’s back, and this time he is retelling us one of our favourite mythological stories. The story of Ramayana.

The first book of the Ram Chandra series by Amish Tripathi, The Scion of Ikshvaku, was released on 22 June 2015 after what seemed to be the most expensive promotional drive for a book, which even included YouTube trailers.

Akshay Kumar at the cover launch of 'The Scion of Ikshvaku.' Wikimedia Commons
Akshay Kumar at the cover launch of ‘The Scion of Ikshvaku.’ Wikimedia Commons

How much did Tripathi succeed in retelling us the story of Ramayana? 

Amish Tripathi knows how to mix mythology with his plots, but how accurate was his mythology this time around? For anyone who knows the Ramayana and expects ‘The Scion of Ikshvaku’ to be the same, must prepare themselves for a shock.

But for those who know how Amish Tripathi goes with his stories, the book will meet all their expectations, for Amish knows how to bend and create a story.

His literary style is nothing classic. Many people don’t even like it, but one cannot help but admire how Amish always manages to create new stories from old, rusty ones. He has an exceptional ability to keep the essence of mythological tales while spinning wildly deviant plots around them.

The narration in ‘The Scion of Ikshvaku’ is very good, with crisp dialogues and suspense which was aptly built up paragraph through a paragraph.

Amish builds upon the epic Rama, in a very un-Ramayana like manner (He never used the word ‘Ramayana’ which is very clever of him). The differences with the epic tale are apparent right where he lists the major characters. Ram is just another human hero and the story is devoid of any magical elements.

The first and greatest difference between the Ramayana and The Scion of Ikshvaku is the depiction of Ram as an unloved prince. His father, King Dasaratha, considers Ram inauspicious and reason for all his misfortunes. The very foundation of the epic is laid differently in the story.

Many characters surprise us we move forward with the story. For example, Manthara instead of a poor handmaiden is shown as the wealthiest businesswoman of Ayodhya in Amish’s world.

Another example is Sita, who Amish appointed as the prime minister of Mithila in his story. Ravana also only has one head in Tripathi’s version, though with a horned helmet.

Amish Tripathi, the author who knows how to bend mythology to create amazing stories. Wikimedia Commons
Amish Tripathi, the author who knows how to bend mythology to create amazing stories. Wikimedia Commons

The intrigue deepens as we read further into the story. Amish has played with this epic and has made it into a story which surprises us at every turn of event. It is nothing like we would think it would be.

Amish is unapologetic about all the changes he made in mythology and that is his USP.

The book is full of examples of Amish’s imagination, but it is for the reader to find them and judge them. The author has packed his book with all the necessary drama-action-comedy masala, the combination which always gets guaranteed success.

Honestly, the book cannot claim any literary merit, but Amish’s easy prose and page-turning style are designed to be enjoyable, not analyzable.

The book is simple yet written nicely. It can get you engrossed right away. Everything is explained well, it is graphic enough for a reader to play it as a movie in their head. This s one book which once picked up, you won’t be able to leave until it is done.