It’s been a bit since I’ve done a comic corner, and I’ve been seeing a lot of search hits for my last comic related blog post on Superman comics. So, I figured it was high time that I write another one.
When I was a kid reading comics I thought that the only thing in the comics world was Marvel, DC, and Star Trek comic adaptions. That was before I first read Watchmen. A high school teacher lent me a copy, and it changed the way that I looked at comics forever. From that point on I was reading titles outside of the main two publishing houses. Sin City, Man Called Kev, Local, Y: The Last Man — I wouldn’t have read any of these if it weren’t for the writing of Alan Moore. Moore didn’t just change the way that I look at comics, he changed the way that everyone looked at superheroes and comic books in general. The way that he put his own spin on titles like Batman and Swamp Thing and then went on to change the mythos of the superhero in Watchmen changed comics in general. And changed them for the better. If you haven’t read any of Moore’s stuff, I have listed here a short primer of three of my favorite Alan Moore titles.
The Killing Joke
In the pantheon of super villains, the Joker ranks among the most devious and brutal. Before Christopher Nolan and Heath Ledger approached the character in The Dark Knight, Alan Moore took his turn at the villain. The Killing Joke not only shows the brutality of the Joker, his disdain for Batman, but it also gives the reader a pretty good origin story. Put it all together and you have a short, one off comic, that shows you the dynamic created between two of the DC universes’ best known characters. Also, the end of the story has a pretty good easter egg that may or may not be the best ending to any comic book ever.
When you think about superheroes in the 21st century, Watchmen should be the first comic that comes to mind. With Watchmen, Moore broke the old stereotype of the faultless superhero. Instead of being superheroes first and people second, they were now people with flaws that showed through into their superhero identities. Watchmen showed the reader superheroes who were deeply flawed, and superheroes who were more involved with themselves than with the world that they were helping. It can be said that if Watchmen hadn’t be written then comics like Sin City, Spawn, and many others would never have existed.
V for Vendetta
Think 1984 on steroids. The world has gone to shit, and the new UK government is trying to keep everything together. Concentration camps, secret police, and state media are all common place in this post-apocolyptic tale from Moore. Everything looks like it will be status quo, with the government suppressing any dissent — then along come V. V is a champion of freedom and anarchy and a construct of Moore’s political opinions.
Interested in apocalyptic stories? Try out my newest story just published on Amazon, Tim and the Breakup of Impending Doom!