Marathon by Boaz Yakin is a graphic novel in black and white that tells the epic tale of the original marathon runner. Over twenty five centuries later it is the foundation for the worldwide sports event that unites all nations, the Olympics.
In 490, the Athenian messenger Eucles ran over 300 miles to help thwart the invasion of the Persians and save his home of Athens and its fledgling democracy from being destroyed.
Born into a slave family, the child Eucles shows his ability to run long distances and fast speeds, and wins the favor of the cruel King of Athens, Hippias. But it is a favor with danger and death attached as Eucles loses his family and parents to the King’s harsh rule. Years later, when the Spartans invade, Hippias is exiled from Athens. The Greek city of Athens then begins its democracy with no King, and years later finds themselves under threat of invasion. With an alliance with the Persian God-King, Darius, Hippias has returned to claim his kingdom. Knowing, on their own, they cannot withstand such an invasion, the Athenians send out their best messenger to the Spartans to seek an alliance.
In the space of a few days, the Athenian Eucles must run 300 miles, avoid bandits and theives and the pursuing invading army to save his city from the returning tyrant, King Hippias.
Though any comparison to Frank Miller’s 300 is unfair, the story of Eucles is one of perseverance and hope. One man facing all placed in front of him to save those he loves. What is one man capable of when he is all that stands between the destruction of all he loves.
A well written and drawn graphic novel. Of a forgotten man and a forgotten time.