My idea for a graphic novel is this:
Title – Jesus H. Christ
It is the story of Jesus. It is a Smallville-esque story told in a pseudo-modern setting, akin to Godspell. The hook is that no one knows what the H stands for.
Initially it is thought it stands for Horus, because Jesus was raised in Egypt, attending the mystery schools there. He returns to Jerusalem with his family fully believing he is the rightful Pharaoh, King of the World. His unseen Spirit Guide tutors him in the ways of the world. Quite a head trip for a twelve-year-old.
After confounding the priests and scribes with his esoteric knowledge, he is admitted to the Mystery Schools of Judea. Jesus is more interested in learning about the Greek Mystery Schools as his Spirit Guide leads him to his new friend, Saul of Tarsus. The two rapscallions cause mischief and soon the H in his name is believed to stand for Hellenist. As the two grow in knowledge, Saul becomes more serious in his studies, and begins to distance himself.
After the falling out with Saul, Jesus becomes disillusioned. His Spirit Guide patiently works with him, reminding him about his King of Kings status. Showing him the whole world and his rightful place as ruler. Finally, trying to put away childish things, Jesus sets off to join a sect in Qumran. When he leaves Qumran, he ends up in the desert on a forty day fast… his final struggle with his Spirit Guide.
I had originally intended to have the H represent his phases of life. Horus, Hellenist, and Hebrew. I wonder if I might expand this to include many other H words. i.e. Human, Holist, Hosanna (For his triumphant ride into Jerusalem), etc. His Spirit Guide switches between the Holy Spirit and Satan, which is why he ebbs and flows in his spirituality. They both appear identical, except for a black mark under one eye on Satan. To Jesus, this mark fades in and out on the Spirit Guide. It takes his whole life before he concludes there are two different Spirit Guides.
The real trick will be to incorporate Eastern and Western worldviews. – “…where East meets West in a maze of pleasure!” Daniel Amos, Mall all over the world