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The picture of Dorian Gray

The essay is based on comparison and contrast of the book called '”The picture of Dorian Gray” and the graphic novel called “The picture of Dorian Gray”. The author is Oscar Wilde. The plot of the essay deals with the comparison of the similarities and the differences in setting, theme, dialogue, plot and details; also includes quotes.

The book “The picture of Dorian Gray is painstakingly a contrast of “The Picture of Dorian Gray” the graphic novel in various aspects. In fact, the setting, the themes, the literary styles and the character traits in these two distinct pieces of art are dissimilar in an extensive way. The core differences are attributed to the social customs wherein the main theme was deemed extremely taboo, in the book whereas the graphic novel adopted some light non-controversial moral position.

First, the book “The picture of Dorian Gray” is set in the pompous London home of a renowned artist’s aunt, Lady Brandon. The artist, Basil Hall is eminent for his meticulous artistic skills; he is also a social person. In fact, it is in this setting that he meets Dorian Gray, a cultured, awesomely handsome fine man. This physical lad, who captures Basil’s arty imagination, depicts him as an ancient mythological figure in Greek antique. In essence, the novel instigates as the artistic concludes the primary part of the portrait of Dorian Gray in perfect resemblance. Additionally, the artist admittedly reveals to the comrade Lord Henry Wolton that he is disappointed with the painting mainly because it brings out his feelings about the subject in entirety. However, Lord Henry does not subscribe to these sentiments and deems the portrait a masterpiece of the artist’s works.

In contrast, “The Picture of Dorian Gray” graphic novel, has is set in the 19th century city of London wherein Dorian Gray, an impressive lad, resides. Nonetheless, he is easily manipulated and faults in a terrible way and subsequently gets absorbed by a spiral of sin and definitive misery. In addition, endeavors discover his sense under the influence of Lord Henry, whose philosophy upholds hedonic lifestyle. The main contrast in the settings of these two pieces of art is the social dignity perception in respective of the time of publication. The book “The picture of Dorian Grey” is considered since social stateliness as rather conservative and “The Picture of Dorian Gray” graphic novel is imperfect with social stateliness and deems the thematic idea apposite and relevant.

“The Picture of Dorian Gray” both the book and the graphic novel share some minor themes but differ extensively in the main theme. The book “The Picture of Dorian Gray” is a thematic piece of art that has laudable literary merit and is rich in subject matter issues to do with duality, summed up by Dorian’s unwavering public image and the deterioration of his concealed portrait, as well as with the relationship between ethics and art, as the adventure do pursuing pleasure which leads to accrued blindness and evil. The vindication of literature in this piece of art is a unique fusion of decadent and gothic forms of writing which produce an irking story. The author, Wilde, writes with distinction to spur the glaring mental as well physical sleaze of a fresh imploring youth which is outwardly impressive, but for its illegitimate frivolity is influenced by flippant philosophies. Thus, the theme of morality and manipulation of youthfulness is inseparable. The book centers on morality wherein a man’s chief goal is development of a true nature through the search of new sensations. The theme is so dominant that it is encoded in such terms as unclean putrefaction and corruption owing to the custom that homosexuality was indeed an unacceptable term in the society. The life of Dorian Gray was characterized by a great romantic admiration by Basil Hall the artist who confessed his obsession over him and the much delight he derived from his company. This was beyond the conventional moral although the era in which they lived tolerated dramatic friendship. This time had a historical context of sexual deviation, thus gross indecency rocked the British society and men took part in illegal homosexual scandals. Young men worked in brothels and served as telegraph messengers during day time. This emphasizes the corruption of youthfulness and its susceptibility which Lord Henry, an old aristocratic man, upheld.

On the other hand, “The Picture of Dorian Gray” graphic novel centers on the theme of the superiority of youth and beauty. During the times of Wilde, the moral climate was dominated by Victorian sensibility thus youth only the purpose of exquisiteness. Thus, the theme of superiority of youth and beauty rules through the novel. It serves the purpose of rejuvenating the wearied senses by the philosophy of Lord Henry. In addition, the brutalities of life, such as horrendous actions, which Dorian commits, play a great role. The lad does this by devoting himself to the study of rare tapestries and jewelry, since the beauty and youth are highly regarded physical traits. Under the influence of Lord Henry Dorian becomes much afraid of losing his youthfulness which he preserves through a wish granted by selling his soul for the purpose of preserving his youthfulness. The other superior theme in “The Picture of Dorian Gray” graphic novel is the superficial nature of the society. In fact, the society’s much value for beauty has been the chief factor in defining man’s impressiveness and not the purity of his heart or a propitious character. Thus, Dorian Gray evolves into a social wreck after abandoning his moral being so naive. He accomplishes a type of a social elite blending with a scholastic wit, although Dorian Gray is being questioned for the immoral mode of life, especially his name and reputation. The society does not give have an explicit distinction between ethics and physical appearance. For instance, Lady Narborough asserts “you are made to be good”.

Characterizations in the book and the graphic novel “The Picture of Dorian Gray” are extremely dissimilar, and depict different characters that are given different traits with varying degrees of sense. The most notable character is Sybil, whose role in the book is traced to a complex Shakespearean actress, whereas the graphic novel depicts her as Vaudeville’s waif. In addition, the book attributes her break up with Dorian Gray to her enthusiasm to quit her career. Contrary to this, the “Picture of Dorian Gray” depicts her as resolved to spend the night with Dorian Gray as the consequential result of their dreadful break up. In the book “The Picture of Dorian Grey” the physical appearance of Dorian Gray is characterized by blonde hair, blue eyes and an emotional temper, whereas the graphic novel envisages Dorian Gray as an icy, lone character. In addition, the character of Dorian Gray is rather a sympathetic character especially in relation to his connection with Basil Hallward, who is obsessed with him. In contrast the graphic novel depicts him as a less cruel character given the harsh treatment.