Moore, Alan

Alan Moore fansite


What can be said that hasn’t been said about this already? It, along with The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller, changed mainstream comics forever. If you still haven’t read this because it has superheroes in it, open your mind a little bit and you’re in for a hell of a treat.

V For Vendetta

Made a little bit before Watchmen, this remains one of the great underrated comics in history. It didn’t get anywhere near the press but was just as good, if not better. This was before “Big Brother” type stories in comics weren’t totally cliche, so keep that in mind while reading this.

From Hell

The story (or at least a well-researched theory) or Jack the Ripper. This’ll be a movie I believe this fall with Johnny Depp and Heather Graham. It took ten years to make this and it’s something like 500 pages long. It’s won a bundle of awards, and deservedly so.

Saga of the Swamp Thing

His Swamp Thing run is kind of forgotten these days, but that’s what got him started here in the states. It completely changed the character and gave other writers material that they’re still using to keep what is now a miserable series going. This is the first volume and it shows what the Swamp Thing actually is: not a man who has been changed into a walking moss monster but a plant who thinks it is a man. Brilliant, groundbreaking stuff.

Swamp Thing: Love and Death

Continues the story with Swamp Thing going to hell to find the woman he loves.

Swamp Thing: The Curse

Will DC collect his entire run ever? Until they do, this is the last volume available. This probably collects up to around #42, and Alan wrote the series until #64, so there is plenty more out there to be gathered.

Swamp Thing: A Murder of Crows

Just found this on Amazon (9/2) for Alan Moore while I was looking around for covers. It doesn’t say the exact run, but I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that it’s probably directly after The Curse. This is one of the better series ever until it falls apart at the end, so if you have the first three books (or some of the older issues like me) you already know that this one is going to be required reading.

League of Extraordinary Gentlemen 1898

I’m way behind on his new stuff. Once I knew he was doing anything at all again, he was already a few issues into every series and I figured I’d wait until the collected works came out. That plan hasn’t worked very well as I’m still broke and I still haven’t bought some of them, this one included. I don’t know, I’ve heard good things about it and it’s Alan Moore. How can it be bad?

Batman: The Killing Joke

I know, I know, it’s a Batman book. But it changed the Joker forever, and that’s no mean feat.

Tom Strong: Collected Edition

Tom Strong is Alan’s take on the Superman character, or maybe it’s reprising his take on his Miracleman character. I don’t know, I still haven’t read this one yet.

The Worm: The Largest Comic Strip in the World

I didn’t even know this existed until I saw it on the Amazon page, so don’t ask me to tell you anything about it. All I know for sure is that it’s written by Alan Moore and Garth Ennis, so it has to be the best thing in the world. Right?

Top Ten Book One

In a town where every person has super powers, how do the cops keep order? The first of these books that I actually read, it made me feel stupid for not at least trying to pick this series up in the middle. Much more entertaining than I thought it would be, and I don’t know why I had a bad feeling about it. Because I mistakenly thought he was working for DC again and lost a little bit of respect for him, perhaps?

Top 10 Book Two

This is the last of the books I was able to buy with my “I still have a steady job, why not get this book?” money, and I don’t think I could have picked a better one. I didn’t follow this book as it was coming out, but there’s no way that it could have come out on a monthly basis. Every panel is packed with in-jokes and references to other comics and characters, from “Vacation on Infinite Earths” to a Hawkwoman feeding little baby hawks in a nest to Kang the Caterer. It’s been said before in other reviews, but this is pretty much Hill Street Blues with superheroes. There might have been three fight scenes in this whole book. It’s all about the characters and the human side of all these fantastic figures. After all, super powers kind of stops being a conversation topic when everybody in town has some. And always, always check out the backgrounds of these panels. There’s always superheroes flying around and doing something, more often than not you’ll probably recognize them. That brings me to my only problem with the book. If you haven’t grown up on comics, you’re going to miss a lot of stuff in here. I think the average person would still get a lot out of it, but this is for the comic book fans, plain and simple. It’s $14.95 and you don’t really have to read these two books in order, although I guess it might help for certain parts. It’s some of his best work in years, definitely the best of the “America’s Best Comics” line that I’ve seen.

A Small Killing

I read this book once about 7 years ago and remembered thinking that I’d better read it again when I was older because a lot of it flew right by me. Well, I’m older now and I don’t have a clue what happened to my copy of it. All I can tell you is that I saw layers and layers there that my teenage brain couldn’t penetrate at the time.

Promethea Book One

OK, I’ve been puttering around the house for the last half hour, trying to avoid writing a review for this. I don’t know what I was expecting exactly, but this wasn’t it. I can’t say that this was bad, because it wasn’t, but I can’t say that it was very good either. I was wrong in thinking that it was his take on the Wonder Woman character. It’s a female superhero type, but that’s where the similarities stop. The story is that Promethea is, well, a story, and has been around for hundreds of years in some form or other. She’s always brought back when people write about her, usually inhabiting the body of the closest female to the writing, or sometimes to the inspiration for the writing. A college girl is researching Promethea for a term paper and ends up becoming her. Throw in an annoying friend, a superhero team called The Five Swell Guys (that part goes nowhere in this book), and a Weeping Gorilla (which is, by far, the highlight of the book), and you’ve got Promethea. If you’re looking for a bunch of good superhero fight scenes, you’re probably going to go away disappointed. There were only a couple in this book as Mr. Moore was trying to set up a history for the character. He was apparently trying to define her for the rest of the series, but he might have lost me already.

What problems did I have with this? It’s well written, sure. That’s a given with this man, so he has to throw in something to maintain my interest besides that. The man has raised the bar pretty high; he pretty much has to redefine comics every time out or the work isn’t that great. By the end of the first book, there’s nothing that hasn’t been seen before. It’s done well, but some of the dialogue is godawful (think “I’m an average person in an extraordinary situation so I’ll say ‘gosh’ and ‘but that’s not possible’ a lot” and you’re getting pretty close). Look, superhero books aren’t my cup of tea, I’ll admit that freely. It’s rare that I like one, and this doesn’t happen to be one of them, at least not yet. I’ve heard that it really picked up steam in the second half, so if I have the cash I’ll buy it and see how it went. If I don’t have the money, however, I honestly can’t say that seeing how this series continues is a priority right now. The bottom line is that this book is just mediocre and, as such, is a serious disappointment.

The Birth Caul

I have to be honest with you here: I couldn’t finish reading this. I’ll read it again one of these days so I can post a proper review here, but all I can tell you now is that it bugged the hell out of me. It just seemed like wandering spoken word type gibberish that Eddie Campbell wanted to draw for some reason.

Supreme: The Return

You wouldn’t believe how long I’ve been trying to get my hands on this story. I heard about it after it came out, as I paid no attention to Rob Liefeld’s comics at all, and by then it was out of print and uncollected. Sometimes I swear that these Checker people are reading my mind with the collections they’re putting out. This is the second collection of what I’m guessing to be at least three. I haven’t seen the first one, apparently it sold out quickly but they’re putting out another printing. Surprisingly, it really didn’t affect my understanding of the story. Sure, it might have helped here or there if I knew exactly what led up to certain things, but the main strength of this series was its vast history. As this character is at most ten years old, that probably needs a bit of explanation. This character is Alan’s take on Superman, pure and simple. I thought that was the point of Tom Strong and maybe it was; I still haven’t read it. There is a world for Supreme that houses the Revisions, which are all the failed versions of Supreme that were discontinued after a few months or a few years, going back decades. Read some of the OLD collections of Batman or Superman if you’re not aware of how many revisions they’ve had over the years. It’s a perfect story device for this because there’s an automatic history for the series, no matter what point you start reading it. Rick Veitch does some flawless work when flashbacks are needed for the sake of reminding readers of “old” characters, and he does a perfect tribute to Jack Kirby as well. Sure, at times it seems like a silly superhero comic, if you’re not reading between the lines, but that’s kind of the point. The actual story here (Supreme fighting villains who’ve escaped his prison, Radar (the Supreme dog) having thousands of puppies, Supreme revealing his secret identity) is good, but it’s secondary to the dissection of Superman that is on display and the incredible ability Moore has to make the silliest things believable and interesting. This is an amazing chunk of work for fans of Moore or just for fans of the medium in general. He’ll be known as the best comics writer ever when he’s gone (I know that he already is, but people don’t truly appreciate the greats while they’re still producing), and this, surprisingly for me at least, is some of his best work. It’s $24.95 but it’s huge, in case you were wondering…

Posted on December 14, 2004, in Reviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Moore, Alan.

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