Just in time for the film adaptation of The Girl In The Spider’s Web, Titan Comics unleashes the first three stories in the Millennium Series. This collection of graphic novels was written by Sylvain Runberg, translated into English by Rachel Zerner, with artwork from Jose Homs and Manolo Carot. In this visual format, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played With Fire, and The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest all honor the legacy started by Stieg Larsson with a gritty unflinching look at human nature corrupted by hate, greed, and lust.
This collection shows the disgraced financial journalist Mikael Blomkvist teaming up with the tragically savage super hacker Lisbeth Salander as they find redemption through researching a missing persons case on an island belonging to a family full of secrets. And later in searching through Lisbeth’s own past.
A Not So Subtle Subtlety
This is no complaint, but you must know going in, that the art style of Homs and Carot is very subtle in how unsubtle it is. You can take any page, completely out of context, and know just how they intend for you to feel. You notice right away just how off everything looks, but it might take a second to realize that every “off” looking character is completely intentional, and builds the dark world Lisbeth inhabits. Everything from a slight contortion of the face to complete isolation makes itself known and ingrains you in the world whether you realize it or not.
Mysteries That Move Quickly
The flow of the panels of each issue allow for the story move and never slow down once things get going. Given the nature of graphic novels, I find this fantastic. You never want the audience to become bored for too long, but what ends up becoming lost with this fast pace includes the scene’s ability to breathe.
I found myself yearning for quieter moments to perhaps have one panel that takes up a full page. Although, I must admit I felt the whole pages dedicated to victims that the protagonists don’t even know about was a very nice touch and step in the right direction to break up the breakneck pace. The Millennium Collection grabs you and doesn’t let you go. The story moving a little too quickly is a natural casualty considering each story from the source material was originally 700 to 800 pages each.
Sympathy For The Devil
This collection deserves far more credit than a mere greatest hits album. While the pages flew by, the story is still fleshed out to the point where, at times, you just feel sympathy for Lisbeth, caught in an abusive cycle. As much of a badass as she is, you still contemplate how the only reason she is vicious is because the whole world treats her like garbage. And the world, in turn, ends up abusing her like garbage because of said viciousness.
How Does It Hold Up?
Titan Comics’ Millennium Trilogy is a thrill ride from beginning to end three times over. Once the collection sets up the characters in The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, Titan Comics doesn’t pull on the reins. Not even for the beginnings of the two stories that follow. If you’ve never read the original novels or seen the movies, this collection is a great place to start. And if you’re already familiar with these stories, this collection is worth a look just to see where it differs from other media. You may even end up picking up the continuation of the graphic novel saga with The Girl Who Danced With Death.
- THE GOOD
- Gritty Art Style
- Interesting Three Dimensional Characters
- Contains The Spirit of the Source Material
- THE BAD
- Quick Pace Could Perhaps Breathe More
- I Wish It’d Been Longer
The Millenium Trilogy Boxset captures the spirit of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and the two sequels that followed. Its art style portrays an unforgiving gritty world of secrets and intrigue. I only wish that Titan Comics had allowed it to breathe a little more.
I’ve been writing almost as long as I’ve been playing video games. I also do standup and improv. The game that made me realize that video games could be more than just a toy, was Metal Gear Solid 2.