Wednesday, July 10, 2013

BOOK: Agent Gates by Camaren Subhiyah and Kyle Hilton

Agent Gates and the Secret Adventures of Devonton Abbey by Camaren Subhiyah and Kyle Hilton, 130 pages

Are you a fan of Downton Abbey and all its glorious excesses? Are you in withdrawl after the last season in January on PBS and impatiently waiting for another season? (There will be more, right?) Then Agent Gates and the Secret Adventures of Devonton Abbey (a parody) is just the reading fix you might be needing.

It's a quick read, in graphic novel form. None of the names are quite the same - Gates for Bates, O'Malley for O'Brien, Mr Larson for Mr Carson, but the drawings match the actors in the roles perfectly so you know exactly who is who. The writing and characters are so perfectly done that I could hear the actors voices in my head exactly, even the minor characters.

The premise is that the British Secret Service (SIS) has Devonton Abbey as a headquarters outside London, with agents disguised as servants. Their job is to thwart attacks that may be dangerous to the Crown, and stop the impending war in 1914. Will the agents save Archduke Franz Ferdinand from assassination as he visits Devonton Abbey?

My favorite exaggeration of character was Lady Cynthia, based on Lady Sybil, forever taking up causes of the downtrodden, while continually downtrodding those around her, or for women's rights which amount to her rights to be a rich lady. Hilarious! Edith, here called Ethel was as pathetic and ignored as you would expect. However, I think the caricature of her on Jimmy Fallon's parody, Downton Sixbey, is even funnier.

It's a sign of a great show if it inspires parody, right?  If you get stuck browsing around youtube, another good one was the SNL 'preview'.