§ Quotable Interview with Alan Moore #147 in a series is up at Mania, and whle the most quoted part has been where he marvels that Blackest Night is mining a story he wrote over 20 eras ago, we’ll quote this part:

AM: Yes, it has. And, can I just say I’m sorry? That was never my intention for every book to be like that. The reason I wanted to do them like that was because nothing else was like that. I wanted to do something that was different. If I were, god forbid, still doing superhero comics today, just like my ABC work from a couple of years ago, they’d be very very different from the Watchmen or Marvelman template. They’d be much more about having fun—whether that be intellectual fun or just plain fun—much more about that than doing any revisions. I think, ultimately, that approach that I brought in—taking previously existing characters and reinterpreting them—has probably led to very grim and very un-enjoyable comic books. I didn’t want everyone else to copy what we were doing. And especially, if they were going to, I’d have preferred it if they’d copied the freshness and originality of the ideas—and, if they had managed to express a bit of the joy that we expressed, even in Watchmen, in Marvelman, and Swamp Thing.

Yes, there were some very grim passages in all those books, but there were also passages of great joy. And, it seemed to me that people basically took from it what they were able to take from it—mostly a slightly depressing atmosphere and the idea that everybody had to be a grim, ruthless psychopath. Even characters like Stanley and His Monster—should they be reinvented as grim, brooding psychopaths? That completely robbed comics of a lot of the charm that, for me at least, they once had. Again, it was never intended as a blanket approach for all comic books. It was just an experiment that I was trying, and it worked better in some cases than it did in others. Yeah, Marvelman and Watchmen—those are pretty good books. On the other hand, where I was doing the same things in The Killing Joke, it was entirely inappropriate.

sugar and spike§ Speaking of joy, Richard Bruton reviews The Toon Treasury Of Classic Children’s Comics, which is a marvelous feast for any comics lover, but he reports, that it impressed the most important audience of all, at least in his household:

And when it does fall into the little hands it’s intended for it is a wonderful thing to behold: I left it on the coffee table last weekend and come back half an hour later to find Molly lying on the floor face buried in the adventures of Scrooge McDuck and absolutely engrossed. After that she went on to discover Sugar & Spike, Little Lulu, Pogo and countless other wonders. They may be old, but these are classics for a reason and the joy they bring is a delightful thing to witness.

§ Opposite direction: 10 of the worst manga of all times.

§ Speaking of Alan Moore, ADD wonders

How great would it be if someone at the new, post-Levitz DC started asking why Alan Moore won’t work for them anymore? How much greater would it be if the company actually made it right with the man? The only ones that would benefit from such a scenario, of course, would be Moore, DC, and us, the readers. In other words, everybody. These corporations have an obligation to look inside themselves at the harm they have done, to their industry, to the artform, and to their own bottom line.

§ What is PIctureBox doing at SPX? Find out the exciting answer right here!

§ The very smart G. Willow Wilson discusses Islam and comics at Broken Frontier:

There’s a general belief that you can’t stop controversy from springing up around Muslims, yet I couldn’t start one. I was pretty excited about this—it hinted at something I’ve believed for a long time, namely, that there is more room for art among the orthodox than is commonly thought.

The success of THE 99 in the Arab world—a theme park is in the works—was the first encouraging sign that the relationship between Muslims and comics were thawing. Though billed as a comic attenuated to orthodox Islamic beliefs, THE 99 actually goes places I wouldn’t dare: it ascribes the qualities of God to human heroes.

§ R. Sikoryak profiled in the NY Daily News — once that would have been a headline, now it’s just a nice story!

Sikoryak combines iconic American comics with complimentary literary classics, creating a new identity for both works that is entertaining and thought-provoking. His comics are an example of how much the genre has grown up, and how far it’s come as a serious form of art.

§ Another nice profile, this one of Robert Venditti, which is timely ‘cuz THE SURROGATES is opening this weekend!


  1. Everyone is talking about “The Empire of Tears”, but what about “In the Blackest Night”?

    I suspect that the Black Lanterns and Nekron will be defeated when the seven ring corps form to create a white lantern (the symbol an amalgam of the seven icons), most likely centered around Rot Lop Fan, the F Sharp Bell (a Green Lantern who is sightless, and thus has no concept of light or color).

  2. Why would DC benefit from “making it right” with Alan Moore now? The whole origin of the original spat as I understand it was that DC promised that the rights to Watchmen would revert to Moore and Gibbons after it went out of print, but the reprint has never gone out of print and DC would seem to have no reason or incentive to do so. Making it right would deprive DC of a lot of cash, wouldn’t it?

  3. Well, DC also sold Watchmen tchotchkes, but didn’t share the proceeds with the creators because they were called promotional items. Amongst other things, it goes beyond bad early contracts.

    Anyway, the idea behind making it right is a bit more than it’d being a mensch thing to do, but that a good working relationship with one of the most successful and prolific creators in comics ever is just a good thing to have.

  4. Also, Edward, you suppose that Moore’s future works will not sell, an assumption that has been proven wrong time and time again.

  5. I wrote a long, rambly thing on Comics Alliance about this because I’m a loser, but rather than reprint all that, I’d just point out here that Blackest Night has very little to do with anything Alan Moore ever wrote. It just takes a starting idea from one of this stories that said there’d be a vague and scary epic battle at some point, which is hardly what you’d call an original idea in any sense. Moore obviously hasn’t read any of the current GL comics and is just mouthing off as he sometimes does because he’s Alan Moore and he likes to tweak DC given the chance, so why don’t we all just move along?

  6. For crying out loud, the Charlton group of super-heroes were starting points for Moore and Gibbons’ Watchmen!! I’m with Kiel, not only should we move along (and I think most of us have), but a few souls need to learn to get along.

  7. Kiel, you’re right. Moore hasn’t read Blackest Night and doesn’t care to. He just likes sticking it to DC when he can. It’s a shame all the babymen take that as some judgement on them personally, but then again, they are babymen.

  8. “I’d just point out here that Blackest Night has very little to do with anything Alan Moore ever wrote. ”

    I’d agree with that, Moore generally writes things worth reading.

  9. How lame of geoff johns to take characters and ideas create by someone else and use them for his own purposes. I can see Moore looking down with contempt at that practice.

  10. My biggest issue with Blackest Night stuff (and increasingly most Big Two comics) is they have the air of “warmed over fan fic”. I mean, how many times has the whole “lantern spectrum” idea probably been pitched numerous times over the years. Same with Zombie stuff. None of which to say is that the work is poor, but Sturgeon’s Law and all that.