Mark Twain’s novel, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is what most would call a “classic.” Published in 1884 with illustrations from E.W. Kemble, Huckleberry Finn was not widely praised but rather criticized for its vernacular and what was seen as a crude writing style all around. It had its troubles at first but it wasn’t until the 20th century that it garnered a large amount of criticism for what people considered its racial stereotypes. Though it’s banned in certain schools (even to this day), the novel is often names as one of America’s Greatest novels. But what if it had…robots?
That’s where creators Gabriel Diani and Etta Devine come in. Much like Seth Grahame-Smith’s Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Diani and Devine added a modern term into a classic piece of fiction. But Diani and Devine had a very particular goal. They didn’t just want to add zombies to Huckleberry Finn and create an alternate world, they wanted to make a point of it. So they replaced every instance of the “n-word” or “slave” with “robot,” to rather interesting effect. Hence, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Robotic Edition was born. Read on for our interview with Diani and Devine where they discuss their approach to the project, challenges, and why censorship is a bad idea.