By pspin 6 Comments
Novels That Would Make Good Comics: Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell
The Story: Splinter Cell is about a man named Sam Fisher. He is a highly trained agent who works for Third Echelon, black ops subdivision of the United States National Security Agency (NSA). The books follow his missions that take him around the world as he saves it from terrorists of various allegiances.
They are separate stories form the games so there is no fear of ruining the story with spoilers. You also do not need to play the games to understand the books. They are essentially standalone stories that allow the reader to dive deeper into the head of Sam Fisher and the world of international espionage. I would also like to point out that this is nothing like James Bond and spies like that these agents use stealth and (almost) regular technology to complete missions that may or may not involve interrogation and killing.
The Material: these comics would draw their source material from the six Splinter Cell books: Splinter Cell, Splinter Cell: Operation Barracuda, Splinter Cell: Checkmate, Splinter Cell: Fallout, Splinter Cell: Conviction, and Splinter Cell: Endgame. They are written by several different authors under the name David Michaels.
Why would these be good: These books would make good comics because they unlike most, if not all comics on the market. Most comics today are about superheroes, dystopian alternate realities, or science fiction. These books are set in the “real world” where the advanced technology is in the form of hacking programs that are conceivable in real life. These are books about a spy with no super powers or super advanced technology; he is just a regular human who has a team of regular humans helping him.
I believe that the fact that they are also stealth based makes them well suited to be comics; the artist would be able to capture the atmosphere and tension in the use of dark colors and techniques like that. The near nonexistence of comics like these books would also make these better.
There is also a great cast in these books. While Sam Fisher is the most explored and developed, there is also his daughter, Sarah Fisher, Anna Grimsdottir, the technical operations manager of Third Echelon, Irving Lambert, Sam’s commanding officer and friend. Most of these characters have had little of their backstories developed and could make great spinoffs or one shots.
The Requirements: adapting these stories to comics would require several things. One is a writer who can cut out the less important parts of the stories; it wouldn’t have to be a big shot like Scott Snyder or Rick Remender (But either are welcome to do it), just someone who could make the correct edits to the story. Another requirement for the adaptation would be an artist who uses a realistic style. This is important for setting the atmosphere. If it is too cartoony then the tension will be lost and the story would have less impact. Artists like Sana Takeda or Guiseppe Camuncoli, Klaus Janson, and Matt Hollingsworth (The current ASM team). The artist would also have to be willing to draw violence because people have a tendency to get shot in these books.
Another requirement would be the length. These books are from 326 pages to 469 pages, I realized that a fair number of these are setting the feel for the story, but this means that the comics would also be on the long side, either in singe book length, or series length, I think that 8 issues would be sufficient to cover these and give them justice.
Summary: due to the combination of being relatively unique in style, real world stealth and espionage, and all around good story, I believe that Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell would make a great comic book series. The six are currently in novel format and can be found are Barnes and Noble and Borders, check them out!
Please give me feedback if you like these books and think I should do more articles like this!