The Boy Next Door Fans are Trying Super Hard to Buy First Edition Copies of The Iliad
Sing, J.Lo muse, of the rage of Achilles
Life imitates art: according to Richard Davies of the online bookseller AbeBooks, the now-infamous The Boy Next Door scene in which Jennifer Lopez is gifted a “first edition copy of The Iliad“ has lead countless Internet users on a quest to find first-edition copies of the ancient, orally-derived work. See, print’s not dead yet!
According to Davies, since The Boy Next Door was released in the U.S. on January 23rd ‘The Iliad, first edition’ has been the top search term on AbeBooks.com, surpassing even To Kill a Mockingbird despite recent renewed interest in Harper Lee.
However, Davies also offers some perspective for anyone horrified by American audiences’ ignorance of Greek epic poetry (which, like, simmer down, elitists. Of all the failings a human can have, not knowing much about a boring-ass book written in dactylic hexameter seems pretty forgivable to me):
There have been numerous editions of The Iliad printed since the 16th century and each new edition would have its own first edition, so in that context the movie’s dialog is actually correct.
Take that, pedants. Also:
It appears people who have watched the film are trying to identify the actual edition handed to Lopez, which has dark yellow and blue boards. I cannot match the book seen in the movie to anything currently for sale on AbeBooks. It could be a movie prop and not even be a real book. It certainly appears to be an attractive book.
That it does.