In 2007, the BBC aired a reading of I Am Legend. The book, of course. They are currently replaying it. The second episode aired last night. Not sure how many there are.
I have heard of the book and how different it was from the movie of the same name not so long ago. I have also seen the film, the Last Man on Earth, starring Vincent Price, which is much more closer to it. I really like that movie – the newer one not so much – and what I heard of the book impressed me.
Listening to it, I am glad to say it matches my expectation. The reading by Angus McInnes (don’t know him, but has a good, clear American voice) is well done, putting a strong amount of emotion into it without overacting. The story of Neville, a simple man trying to survive against vampire besiegers and loneliness, is compelling work. I do like that he is just some bloke too. It feels more everyman. It feels about going against creating some kind of superman survivor – someone special to be in awe of and hoping he can bring hope to a new world. This is just some man, getting by, having learned hard lessons, and being motivated by hatred of these creatures.
So if you can listen to this at all, I highly recommend it. If not, watch the movie, the Last Man on Earth. The later movie, and also the Omega Man starring Charlton Heston, aren’t bad, but I don’t think either really delves into the mind of a single survivor and the madness that eats at being alone in the world.