Robespierre – Historica Biographies 5 | Review


Published on Oct 08, 2017


Mondadori Comics continues its initiative to present the Italian edition of some of the volumes that are part of the series French Ils son fait l'histoire of Glénat/Flayard, by choosing characters that they can be known also in Italy. This series, as you can imagine, is marked by great historical rigor, thanks to the collaboration with some of the experts – in this case, the prof. Leuwers, University of Lille.

For the fifth output Mondadori has chosen to present one of the most controversial figures in French history, that Maximilien de Robespierre, the most representative character of the Revolution, in both good and bad. Not an easy task for the screenwriter Mathieu Gabella, in fact, in an attempt to give a neutral vision, but totally adherent to history, has created a volume which could be rather heavy.

In proceeding with the reading, in fact, the thing that you immediately notice is the deep study of the history that forms the setting to the events. If some of the earlier volumes of the same series do not require an in-depth knowledge of the history of the protagonist, here it is taken for granted that the reader is familiar with the political situation of the French at the end of ‘700, citing the Mountain, the rose, the Jacobins... If this knowledge can assume (maybe) a reader in French, it is not the same for a player... Probably this adherence to History is necessary just to try to give a vision as the most neutral of Robespierre, still the subject of discussion in France, leaving the reader to draw their own conclusions.

However, this makes it all the more aseptic the reading, not involving the reader, who feels more often a spectator of the events that surrounded them. Perhaps a stance of the authors would have helped to appreciate more the work.

In addition, the volume takes into account only the part of the life of Robespierre during the Revolution, so much so that it often passes from one event to another without solution of continuity (I think to the question of the Vendée), in fact taking it for granted that the reader is already familiar with the facts. If you add to that the willingness of the excise Tax to enter often the speeches and writings of Robespierre inside the volume includes as well as the reader more curious will get bored and be pushed to skip some parts to look a little more action, that, to tell you the truth, this book totally lacks.

Unfortunately, this domain of the written penalizes the tables, whose designs are often sacrificed to make room for the writings of Robespierre and several of the dialogues, which is a shame, because Roberto Meli (designer also of the volume dedicated to Saladin) has a sudden powerful and effective, but unfortunately suffered from what has been said.

The edition Mondadori is instead excellent, especially in relation to the price of the volume is hardback, which also contains a historic exploration of the character, full of interesting details.

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