Not sure if you will enjoy
the Heart of Empire Directors Cut ? - not a problem! - we have put the whole
One online for free!
it out and see if you like it: if you do then you can come back
to this page and buy it; if you don't like it then you've avoided
spending cash on something you wouldn'tve enjoyed!
Also available from each page are links to the annotations –
over 60,000 words of detailed and entertaining commentary, where
Bryan Talbot points out the inspirations, influences, references,
symbolism and in-jokes underlying the whole graphic narrative.
Why is this the "second edition" - what is better
than the first edition? Well, we're glad you asked! The
first edition contained the entirety of the prequel to Heart of
Empire, the Adventures
of Luther Arkwright, but Bryan and myself were never
100% happy with the quality of the scans. We added the comic on
there for the sake of completeness but never really made a big deal
of the fact that it was there.
We also were aware that rescanning the whole of Arkwright to the
point of "digitally remastering" it would take about six
months or so.... And then a fan who is also a publisher in the Czech
Republic talked Bryan into lending him all of the original artwork
to Arkwright and he literally spent six months doing nothing but
scanning it in at massively high resolution. And so the second edition
of the digital download was born, with much better quality
versions of the Adventures of Luther Arkwright.
There are also brand new pieces of
artwork, preparatory sketches and other illustrations showing where
the inspiration for certain scenes were derived: e.g. the original
Eighteenth Century Hogarth engraving that inspired the Bedlam sequence.
In the annotations to the artwork, there are bawdy anecdotes, silly
tirades and many mini-essays on related subjects as diverse as William
Blake, English mythology, the sexual activities of Charles II, William
Hogarth, Free Love, Catastrophe Theory, Magic Mushrooms, Pagan Festivals,
The Golden Section, Orgone Energy, Subliminal Imagery, Famous Farters,
Synchronicity and the Twenty-three Enigma.
A veritable treasure trove of entertaining and educational information!
All this plus two interviews, biographies, a very user-friendly
interface, a full index to all the annotations, a directory of all
the front and back covers with commentaries, a directory of additional
artwork and also the FULL “Adventures of Luther Arkwright”
graphic novel. This is the “Directors Cut” of Heart
of Empire: it shows exactly where Bryan got his ideas and references
from and tells how he wove all of his influences together into the
award winning graphic novel that is Heart of Empire.