November 13, 2020
[moore] La Frontera (2011) by Alan Moore and Melinda Gebbie … A charming, little-seen short story from Moore and Gebbie originally published in Spain.
November 13, 2020
[moore] La Frontera (2011) by Alan Moore and Melinda Gebbie … A charming, little-seen short story from Moore and Gebbie originally published in Spain.
November 9, 2020
[comics] Herb Trimpe, We Love You! … fascinating documentary about comic artist Herb Trimpe with scenes shot in the Marvel Bullpen during 1970 and 1971.
October 22, 2020
[books] Alan Moore’s Book Recommendations … A wide-ranging book list compiled from a number of interviews over the years.
October 19, 2020
[comics] Adrian Tomine in conversation with Seth … I wonder how they coerced Seth to use Zoom? :)
October 12, 2020
[moore] Alan Moore Rare Interview: “Superhero Movies Have Blighted Culture” … A standard-issue Alan Moore interview but good to hear his updates on what he’s currently working on and how he and Melinda Gebbie are dealing with lockdown in Northampton. ‘I’ve only retired from comics. I’m finishing off a book of magic now. It’s been stalled for a while but I’m also working on an opera about John Dee with [musician] Howard Gray. I’ve got some short stories coming out. And I’ve also been thinking a lot about what we want to do after The Show feature film. We hope that it’s enjoyable as a thing in itself, but to some degree it could be seen as an incredibly elaborate pilot episode, we think there’s quite an interesting story that we could develop out of it as a TV series, which would imaginatively be called The Show.’
October 7, 2020
[moore] “Providence Was Really Exhausting. Finishing It Felt Like Finishing College”: An Interview With Jacen Burrows … Long discussion with Jacen Burrows on his career at Avatar and collaborations with Alan Moore and Garth Ennis. ‘I didn’t know a tremendous amount about Lovecraft himself until we did Providence. There was stuff I’d stumbled across during research and stuff I learned from Alan. As you know, he writes massive scripts with a lot of extra information for context and he’d often pull stuff from some of the many research books he’d read and put it in the script so I could be fully informed about why we were taking things in certain directions during the production. It was quite helpful and rare, honestly, to have that much insight. The deeper thinking behind the scripted actions instead of just stage directions, you know? A lot of people find those Moore scripts challenging because of the density but I really liked it, even if it was a ton of work to get it all on the page.’
September 28, 2020
[comics] A List of Things Mark Evanier Learned About the Comic Book Industry … Great, amusing list from Mark Evanier. ‘In most fight scenes, the amount of time it would take actual combatants to throw all those punches is often less than one-tenth the time it would take them to speak all the words in their word balloons while they battle.’
September 23, 2020
[dredd] The Megazine That Never Was … The story of an unlaunched Judge Dredd comic from 1984. ‘Sadly, unlike the other stories from the Fortnightly dummy issue, Alan Moore and Mike Collins’ Badlander is a title that never saw publication. Marking the iconic Moore’s only work within the Judge Dredd universe, the strip was to tell the truth about what really happens to the Judges when they decide to go on “the Long Walk” — a piece of Dredd mythology where, instead of retiring, veteran Judges set off to provide justice and law in the radioactive wastelands of the Cursed Earth.’
September 22, 2020
[comics] Their Other Last Hurrah – Cinema Purgatorio … A Comics Journal review of Moore and O’Neill’s Cinema Purgatorio. ‘When the terrified gangsters speak about being hounded by that thing in their past that wouldn’t let them go why am I thinking about A Small Killing? And at this point I realize the problem isn’t the work; it’s me. Here I am, in front of this dedicated, fascinating, funny and (in many ways) educational series and all I can think about is intertextuality. Seeking the digs at Grant Morrison and wondering if the bearded madman portrayal of Howard Hughes reminds me a bit too much of Alan Moore himself. This kind of exercise can often be a time waster. A replacement for a deeper engagement with the work (mea culpa by the way). Doing it while reading a finishing work by two grand masters is the definition of not seeing the forest for the trees. You can also read the book on its own terms and just see two utter greatest playing their game, heaving a ball, no limits allowed.’
September 17, 2020
[comics] How legendary weekly British comic, 2000 AD, survived Covid-19 and thrived… Some great news for British comics. ‘Like many other children’s publishers during the Covid-19 lockdown, 2000 AD has also witnessed a significant uptick in subscriptions at a time when children – and their parents – were at home rather than school. The publisher saw a 6% rise in subscriptions between Q1 and Q2. Additionally, the publisher also saw sales up 94% on print editions from its webshop and a 56% rise in digital e-comic sales.’
September 8, 2020
[moore] Drawing Up Sides … Alan Moore Interview from 1984. ‘Politics is about trying to reduce human behaviour to something that can be understood, predicted and written about in The Daily Mail or The Sunday Mirror. It’s an attempt to apply a cold remote theory to something warm and vital, and in my book anybody who does that is a twat. Except when they do it through force of arms: then they’re a bastard!’
September 7, 2020
[comics] “This Was Cultural Genocide”: An Interview With Joe Sacco … Sacco is interviewed about his new book. ‘It’s also a question of what can a comic book do? How far can you push the reader into a very complicated issue. I’m always reading books that are very complex. Just as we all do. As a reader when you’re reading prose you expect a lot from yourself, I think. They have a lot of moving parts. In comics the advantage I think is that you have all these moving parts and illustrations can cement things in a readers head better. I tried to push things as far as complexity goes. Land claims are complex. You have the government of Canada, the government of the Northwest Territories, and then you have the different Dene groups each with its own agenda. You have the complexities within communities, the strains within communities over claims. The tension between communities. It’s all very complex. You’ll have to tell me if I pulled it off. It depends on the readers patience. I guess I’m expecting readers to be patient.’
September 3, 2020
[comics] Steve Ditko Designed Spider-Man to be Orange and Purple … Steve Ditko described his original design ideas to Jonathan Ross when they met. ‘So I said that Steve, I said ‘have you got any old work, do you want you want this? I offered him the Amazing Fantasy #15. He went oh, and he looked at it, he told me ‘you know they got the colours wrong.’ I said what do you mean? He said ‘well, when I drew that, when i came up with that costume, I wrote that he should be orange and purple.”
August 27, 2020
[comics] That time I looked up at Penrhyn Castle in Wales and saw Swamp Thing staring down at me…
August 26, 2020
[moore] Correspondence From Hell … The complete text to an epic late ’90s fax interview between Alan Moore and Dave Sim on just about everything. ‘Moore: The middle eighties was when comic books finally got laid. Media attention. Frank Miller in Rolling Stone, MTV. Maus cops the Pulitzer. Watchmen on University reading lists. The style and music press raving about Love & Rockets. Fuck, man, we had the “Cerebus-the-Aardvark Party” running in British elections in ’88. Reason tottered on its throne. Everybody was on Top of the Pops. We got everything we ever asked for, just as one often finds in real life or the better fairy stories, and just like in real life or the better fairy stories it turned out to be shit. For a few years there, everything we touched turned to gold, and now what the fuck are we going to do with all this gold? All this shit?. With honest and sincere effort, we made comics what we wanted them to be: as popular as any other 20th-century medium. As respected as any other 20th-century medium. What on earth were we thinking?’
July 13, 2020
[comics] An oral history of Carol Kalish: the most important comic book figure you’ve never heard of … Remembering the influential marketing exec at Marvel. ‘What she did was just bring sensible business practices to an industry that, when she started, largely worked out of cigar boxes. She modernized the comics industry in a lot of ways.’
July 6, 2020
[comics] The Wreckage Part One | Part Two … Engrossing long read on Grant Morrison’s Doom Patrol. ‘So I guess I’m talking around the problem, said problem being – these comics don’t sit as easily as they might once have, for a number of reasons. They don’t seem so radical, for one thing, now that all their best moves have been copied by subsequent generations. It seems like these book have a lot of something that was very, very cool in 1990 and thereabouts, but which really isn’t quite the same thing precisely as “cool” in 2019. And it’s not like it’s uncool exactly, but nether is it the rather deathless 1960s Batman show, the virtues of which seem more and more enduring with every passing year, as we see that camp silliness was never really something anyone hated but self-righteous nerds. Stuff that purposefully eschews any attempt to be cool often ages better…’
July 3, 2020
[comics] Alan Moore’s Supermen…
July 2, 2020
[comics] Grant Morrison Batman Reading Order … I’ve been trying to work out the reading order of Grant Morrison run on Batman and Final Crisis – It’s complicated.
June 30, 2020
[comics] Milton Glaser and the DC Bullet … Todd Klein analyses the symbol designer Milton Klein created for DC Comics in the 1970s. ‘DC was still using letterpress printing for all their comics. Glaser’s design, with it’s thin lines and thin white spaces, looked great at a larger size, but comics printing wasn’t really up to making it work well at the small size used on covers. In the 1980s DC began gradually transitioning away from letterpress to offset printing with much better and more accurate presses, and then the original DC bullet would have worked fine.’
June 24, 2020
[comics] JAKA’S STORY: What It Was in 1988, and What Cerebus Used to Mean … A melancholy look at Cerebus and the fall of Dave Sim. ‘MELMOTH was spent talking about the illness and slow death of Oscar Wilde, at a time people were still dying regularly from AIDS and little was even being tried to stop it. It was deeply sensitive and empathetic. And I still see nothing insincere in Dave’s empathy and affinity to Oscar Wilde, both in the more fictionalized version of Oscar here, who is never not entertaining, but also MELMOTH where it’s virtually the real man himself. That’s what makes later on so baffling.’
June 19, 2020
[comics] 10 Questions: Chip Zdarsky Interviews Annie Nocenti … Fascinating discussion about Daredevil between the current and former writer of the comic.
June 11, 2020
[bignumbers] The Meaning of Big Numbers … Some interesting analysis of Big Numbers plot and what it might have meant. ‘If there’s mathematical order in the apparently chaos of these divinely beautiful fractal images, and we buy the theory that there must then be mathematical order and divine beauty to life, too, just an order too grand for us to comprehend (sure enough, the chaotic soup of unconnected human interactions in this story seem to end up giving the good people what they want, and punishing the bad people)… then perhaps letting a numerical system take over our life isn’t so different to our present existence. Perhaps there’s a divine beauty in that that’s beyond our comprehension, too. Perhaps the story is an optimistic one.’
June 9, 2020
[comics] Alan Moore’s Big Numbers Outline Chart… The script outline for AM’s unfinished comic Big Numbers typed out and handily converted to an HTML page with annotations.
June 4, 2020
[comics] Why I Hate Christians. … I love a rant from Dan Clowes – here’s a complete set of original art pages from Eighball #11.
May 14, 2020
[comics] An Interview with Rick Veitch… Dicussing his run on Swamp Thing. ‘My involvement was really a secondary career, I had a really great thing going at Marvel, writing and drawing a creator owned series at Epic. So I didn’t think of it as my money-making career, I really wanted to learn more about this… magic… Alan was conjuring. In the process I got to know the editor, Karen Berger, so it seemed natural that when Steve and John left, that I would become the regular penciller on the book.’
May 13, 2020
[books] Best 250 Adventures of the 20th Century … Great list of Adventure books and comics. ‘Neil Gaiman’s occult fantasy comic The Sandman (1989–1996) …As he searches for his lost objects of power, Morpheus genre-hops — from myth to pulp fiction, and everywhere in-between. Also, Gaiman inserts pop culture and literary references and jokes into nearly every panel. It’s a dazzling display of high-lowbrow literary fandom… one leaving even the most well-read fan wishing for extensive, Chester Brown-esque footnotes… which, thankfully, are now available via annotated editions. Sam Kieth, Mike Dringenberg, Jill Thompson, and others contributed appropriately eerie and amusing art, with lettering by Todd Klein and covers by Dave McKean.’
May 12, 2020
[comics] ‘Morning Of The Magician’: Swamp Thing meets Jesus Christ – The Lost Swamp Thing … Full script and pencils for Rick Veitch’s unpublished Swamp Thing #88. ‘In his first major storyline, Veitch had Swamp Thing going backwards in time, meeting up with historical DC characters, and historical characters in history. The storyline had been mapped out in advance, and editors had been notified, and there was some concern as Veitch wanted to end the story with Swamp Thing meeting none other than Jesus Christ…’
April 30, 2020
[comics] You are so fucked! … By Evan Dorkin.
April 24, 2020
[comics] A Holy Grail in the Library of Congress: Visiting Steve Ditko’s Amazing Fantasy #15 Original Artwork … A look at the original art for the first Spider-man comic. ‘The pages look like they were drawn yesterday. The ink is dark, the pages are crisp and you can still read the phantoms of Stan Lee’s erased pencil notes to artist Steve Ditko (“Steve, remove spider—change position of hand.”). You can also see, very clearly, when Ditko ignores Lee’s edits in Spider-Man’s origin story.’
April 21, 2020
[comics] Brian Michael Bendis’ Stuck at Home Comic Book Reading List … Another good list of comics to read while stuck at home. ‘Akira by Katsuhiro Otomo- On a list like this including Akira is like saying you like the Beatles or Nirvana. Way to go out on a limb! But soooo many people say to me, “Oh, I always meant to read that.” Well, there is no better comic book binge-reading meal than Akira. It is completely fulfilling.’
April 20, 2020
[comics] Graphic Content: At the Intersection of Comics and Crime With Howard Chaykin … Recent interview with Chaykin on crime comics. ‘Although EC’s CRIME SUSPENSTORIES was hardly a crime comic book—rather, it was a stream of variations on bad marriages where divorce was never considered as an option while murder was the obvious choice—still, the look of this material, in particular the brilliance of Johnny Craig, is deeply informed by the fatalism and nihilism of the novelists I’ve mentioned, as well as the sort of movies reflecting his outlook. His stuff owes an unacknowledged debt to Cornell Woolrich. And Wallace Wood’s rotting urban disturbia in SHOCK SUSPENSTORIES completely informs my mind’s eye view and understanding of Jim Thompson and David Goodis. In terms of more recent crime comics, I loved the first few arcs of 100 BULLETS. I’m very fond of the CRIMINAL series, as well.’
April 14, 2020
[comic] Free Viz Comic … Free download from the great British humour comic. ‘Under the powers vested in us by the Fulchester Town Council Emergency Powers Act 2020, here is your third FREE Viz download to keep you safely out of trouble for the next bit of the hoo-ha.’
April 13, 2020
[comics] Biffo the Bear in Lockdown …
April 7, 2020
[comics] Tom King’s 12 Comics to Read While You’re Sheltered in Place … interesting list of comics.‘DC Universe: The Stories of Alan Moore – Alan Moore is the master of modern comics and this is my favorite work of his. It collects the one-shots and short stories he did for DC in the ‘80s, including his work on Superman, which in my opinion are the best superhero comics of all time. Writers and artists have been mining these few comics for inspiration for decades and will continue to do so for decades more. Many of the secrets of modern comics are found in these pages. Please don’t tell.’
April 3, 2020
[comics] 5 Tips for would-be comics writers from Alan Moore … ‘This is by no means the most glamorous profession. Don’t say that I didn’t warn you.’
March 31, 2020
[comics] Bryan Talbot Offers Free Comics Compilation Download … With comics written by Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman, Nick Cave and others. Download: PDF / CBR.
March 25, 2020
[comics] Frank Miller’s “Famous Detective Pin-Up” portfolio … a gallery of Frank Miller art about classic pulp detectives.
March 16, 2020
[comics] A jam comic cover from Mick McMahon, Brian Bolland, Dave Gibbons and Kevin O’Neill … Created for a 1979 Society of Strip Illustration (SSI) newsletter.
March 11, 2020
[comics] Hand Painted Colour Guides for the Death of Gwen Stacy Issue of Spider-Man from 1973 … Some historic comics process art spotted the Bristol Board tumblr.
February 19, 2020
[comics] The horror comic that wasn’t: Alan Moore and Bryan Talbot’s Nightjar … Pages from one of Moore’s lost comics.
February 14, 2020
[comics] Young Alan Partridge Adventures #1 … ‘Issue 1 – The Poachers of Swaffham Wood!’
February 10, 2020
[dredd] The Best Comics of the Decade (Are All Judge Dredd) … Some interesting analysis of the last ten years of Judge Dredd comics. ‘With seven pages per chapter there is never much time to overthink things. 2000AD remained the pinnacle of to-the-point presentation – never more than necessary, never less than what you want. These are procedural comics taken to its zenith. Henry Flint, John McCrea, Colin MacNeil, P.J. Holden and (of course) Carlos Ezquerra have all brought their own little touches to the world of the strip, always in service of the story. But, the reason Judge Dredd is the best comics of decade is more than that. It’s more than any single story or creator. It’s not about what it does, it’s about what it is. To me at least, Judge Dredd in the 2010’s is zeitgeist. It’s a story about one of the biggest moral questions in the West – can you be a good man in a bad system?’
February 6, 2020
February 1, 2020
[comics] 100 of the Best Horror Comics of All Time … ‘Gyo: An undercurrent of black humor runs throughout much of Junji Ito’s work, and nowhere does he play with that contrast as fruitfully as in Gyo. Subtitled The Death-Stench Creeps, Gyo commits dozens of pages to bloated, infected humans essentially farting themselves to death, but any hint of a laugh is dashed when the full scope of Gyo sets in. These gasbags are trapped in mechanical carapaces drudged up from the ocean floor, remnants of some long-ago war effort returned to haunt the living. What at first seems like “only” an invasion of land-bound sea creatures (including the most chilling shark scene to ever take place out of the water) soon turns into an Apocalyptic vision of body horror as only Ito can conjure.’
January 28, 2020
January 20, 2020
[comics] “I Feel Like Comics Needs Its Own Thing” … Daniel Clowes interview from 2014. ‘I’m doing The Complete Eightball right now, and I’m doing all these new images for it, for the covers and the slipcase and all that. And I’m trying to draw all these old characters for the first time since I originally drew them, some of them 20 or more years ago. And it’s funny, some of the ones that have this kind of real angular stiffness, I literally can’t draw it as stiffly as they originally looked, even though I’m trying to. I’m trying to recapture that feeling, and it’s just impossible. I’m much more relaxed and confident, and you can’t, like, summon a lack of confidence like that. I’ve been really trying to, like, listen to the same kind of music I used to listen to and really get in the same “headspace” as they would say, but it’s very difficult.’
January 17, 2020
[comics] Captain America by Ed Brubaker Reading Order … I’ve been bingeing on a lot of Ed Brubaker comics recently and this reading order was a great help. ‘It’s the most celebrated run on the Captain America modern series.’
January 14, 2020
[moore] A Handwritten Alan Moore Interview from 1987 … ‘Q: If Jim Shooter and Dick Giordano wrestled, who would win? Alan: The mud.’
January 9, 2020
[comics] Sandman to Hark! A Vagrant: the best comics of the decade … another comics roundup of the past decade this time from the Guardian. ‘Providence by Alan Moore and Jacen Burrows (2015-17) – The capstone to Moore’s remarkable career in comics, Providence is a horror narrative of staggering depth and detail. The book works as a complex meditation on identity and morality, but it’s also a huge addition to the body of narrative gamesmanship surrounding HP Lovecraft, who lived and worked in the city that gives the story its name. Providence (the comic) at first appears to be a collection of oblique, linked short stories and then resolves into a gigantic vision of inevitable – providential – destruction, wrought by countless tiny, familiar failures.’