Thou Shalt Realize the Bible Kicketh Ass

At least that’s how 10 Zen Monkeys webzine creator RU Sirius has decided to frame an interview he just did with me about my comic, Testament. Of course, any chance to interact with RU Sirius is a mind-expanding treat. He was one of the main reasons I got into this game to begin with.

Here’s a taste from the beginning:

What if The Bible were happening right now? That’s the question Douglas Rushkoff has been trying to grapple with in Testament, a series of graphic novels that transpose Biblical stories into contemporary narratives. The series, created in collaboration with artist Liam Sharp flashes back and forth between contemporary and Biblical times, portraying struggles between total control freaks and revolutionaries. Various gods and goddesses form a sort of Greek Chorus — philosophizing and commenting on the action. The “Testament” series is a startling attempt to bring Biblical mythology back to life.

The first five editions of Testament were gathered together in a paperback edition titled Testament: Akedah. A second paperback edition, Testament Vol. 2: West of Eden, is scheduled for release in January, 2007.

I interviewed Rushkoff by email.

RU SIRIUS: Let’s start off talking about the medium itself, the graphic novel. It seems like the graphic novel became a repository for stories with mythic resonances and heroism in the Joseph Campbell sense, since that kind of storytelling was marginalized by the modern and then the post-modern novel. Would you agree? And who in this genre has inspired you?

DOUGLAS RUSHKOFF: I think novels lost a bit of their dimension as readers demanded narrators they could “trust” and perspectives with which they could identify. In some ways, the novel — and most textual narrative — became awfully realistic. The post-modernist experiments were mostly being conducted in other forms, like poetry, and only “kids” novels or series attempted fantasy or mythology in any real way.