Comfortably Numb

Sheila Kumar's Storehouse

Published on: 08/14/15 11:53 AM

Book review: Bhima Lone Warrior by MT Vasudevan Nair

This is more a brief take than review.

With Bhima: Lone Warrior, Kerala’s own MTV gives us the Kurukshetra war and the events leading up to it, from the perspective of Kunti’s second son. The picture that emerges very convincingly debunks the hefty, bumbling giant of popular legend and imagination.

Here you have an intelligent man who is troubled by questions regarding his paternity, troubled over the actions taken by his elder brother Yudhishtira, troubled even as he tries to be impervious to the taunts and slights he is often subjected to, both unwittingly and deliberately.

This Bhima observes everything but keeps a prudent silence, is deeply in love with the wife he shares with his brothers even as he realises her emotions are directed mainly and equally towards his younger brother Arjuna and an all encompassing desire for vengeance.

Gita Krishnankutty’s translation is an excellent one, allowing M T Vasudevan Nair’s characteristically restrained yet powerful tone to come through.

Bhima mourning his son Ghatotkacha’s death on the battlefield even as Krishna reveals that the young giant is better dead than alive, is such a moving passage. The man with the mace is truly a hero who deserves to stand shoulder to shoulder with Arjuna in the pantheon.

BhimBhimaBhima Lone WarriorMahabharathaMT Vasudevan NairPandavas

Sheila Kumar • August 14, 2015

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