REVIEW – Medievally Speaking


I was happy to come across this review of the Kid Beowulf trilogy by comics scholar and professor, Jason Tondro for Medievally Speaking. This is one of the most thorough reviews KidB. has received and I appreciate Tondro’s knowledge of comics and literature! Here are a few choice pull-quotes from the article…

Kid Beowulf is a well-written adventure comic with humor and a strong literary influence that makes it eminently suitable for middle-school readers. More advanced students will find Fajardo’s progressive and sympathetic characterization of gender, faith, and culture to be rewarding and provocative.

On the women characters in Kid Beowulf

One of the challenges to reading Beowulf is that it is a poem written for warrior men; half my class begins the project from a position of exclusion. This is not true of Kid Beowulf; Beowulf may not pass the Bechdel test, but Kid Beowulf does. The women of this book, most especially Gertrude (daughter of the Dragon and mother to our protagonists) and Bradamant, are fully realized characters with personal goals and the wherewithal to accomplish them.

On religion and culture in Kid Beowulf

The same attention to characterization is present when Beowulf and Grendel travel among French and Spaniards, meeting Muslims, Jews, and even followers of Mithras, all of whom are presented fairly and with sympathy.

There’s lots more great insight, so hop on over to Medievally Speaking for the full review!  For  more about Jason Tondro, check out his blog and youtube lectures (which I’ve found great for listening to at the drawing board).