Mad Mad Moore

Adel Gabot

Alan Moore

10:32AM

Posting about V For Vendetta the other day got me to thinking about Alan Moore, the creator/writer, and his work over these many years.

The guy certainly has conjured a stellar line-up of comic book work that I’ve long admired: his run/revival of Miracleman/Marvelman; the aforementioned V For Vendetta; the legendary and seminal Watchmen (not to be confused with the Zack Snyder movie made from it; he abhorred that version and wanted nothing to do with it); the wonderful one-shot Joker origin story Batman: The Killing Joke; his run on Swamp Thing; the fantastically detailed Jack The Ripper tale From Hell; and a host of other notable work on various titles.

I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting him as I have my other comic book idols, like Neil Gaiman and Frank Miller, and by the looks of it I doubt if I ever will. It’s just as well; by all accounts he’s a real character, that one. Wild with his unruly beard and hair, and eccentric, with that aura of crazed, unreasonable brilliance that seems to be the province of anyone who’s remotely considered a genius.

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I especially loved his work on Miracleman. Moore revived a fifties milquetoast dead-end superhero (originally called Marvelman, but copyright issues with the DC character Captain Marvel prevented him from using the name) and recast him to be a god among men, and all that entailed. He created a realistic world that had an actual superhero living among puny humans.

Likewise his work on The Killing Joke, a unforgiving take on the Joker’s origin story that had Barbara Gordon (Batgirl) brutalised, raped and paralysed by the Joker and his henchmen. Strong stuff, and unyielding.

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Alan Moore, Frank Miller and Neil Gaiman form the supreme triumvirate of classic comic book gods in my book. All others can only aspire to try to at least match their combined work. Frank Miller stands out for his work on Daredevil, Ronin, and of course the classic The Dark Knight Returns; Neil Gaiman for his landmark Sandman series, among many other different and varied work.

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A warm salute to my heroes!


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