Thursday, August 29, 2013

The New Adventures of Tarzan

In Tarzan's Quest (1935), Tarzan, Jane and a monkey are granted immortality. I've always thought it a shame that the Burroughs estate hasn't allowed writers to continue the Tarzan stories into the modern era, since Burroughs himself made such stories possible. Tarzan's canonical adventures end around the time of the Second World War, and I think it would be fascinating to see how Tarzan reacts to the post-colonial era that emerged through the following decades - not to mention all the drama that Africa has faced from then until the present day. Imagine Tarzan taking part in the Suez crisis, or the revolution in Algeria! He'd take the side of the colonial powers, of course, but a good writer could use those conflicts to moderate Tarzan's views and perhaps make him a more well-rounded, modern character.

And of course there are less weighty adventures to be had. Why not send Tarzan to the moon in the early 1970s, to discover, no doubt, some magnificent underground civilization? Or perhaps he could spend some time voyaging with Cousteau, fighting sea monsters. What fun!

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