Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Why I Hate Alan Moore

Ok, this is gonna have to be a multi-part series because as soon as one types the words "Hate" and "Alan Moore", one can feel the hate mail flowing from the very folks who make one want to make this post.

So yeah, Part One - Alan Moore Did a Good Thing

He wrote the Watchmen. That's it. And then apparently the world stopped turning.

Well in reality he wrote more than that and contrary to the belief his "Jonestown-esque" followers, typewriters around the world turned into rusted doorstops the day Watchmen was published.

Now don't get me wrong, Watchmen was wonderful. I love the characters. I love nine panel layout (Go Giffen!!!) and I love seeing iterations of some of my favorite characters. Now here's where it gets hinky. It wouldn't have been nearly as good if Moore had used the JSA. This is important.

All of that stuff that happened in Watchmen happened because Alan Moore was free to do whatever he wanted. He was free because he didn't use characters owned by anyone else and I am not even going to get into whether or not DC owns those characters because I really don't care.

I will get into the fact that some amazing stories were written about Super heroes before Watchmen but Moorites seem to want to talk as if they'd out grown stories such as the Avengers vs. Count Nefaria or the Avengers vs. Korvac or Walt Simonson's Thor or the Dark Phoenix Saga or even Moore's own work with Swamp Thing. They discount Grant Morrison's Doom Patrol and Animal Man as well as Neil Gaiman's Sandman.

If one were to make an argument that Watchmen was more complex, i'd have to agree. I'd give bonus points to anyone who made this argument and then told me that they read the Church and State run of Dave Sim's Cerebus AND the Death of Captain Marvel but I can't imagine that there are that many of you out there.

Here is my Alan Moore Truth:
Watchmen - Amazing
Swamp Thing Amazing and in the DCU
From Hell - Amazing

Everything else like League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Tom Strong, Promethea, Supreme, Wildcats (yes WildCats), was good to better than good but some of it was written in his sleep and NO, it was not all better than anything else being published at the time.

It's too soon in the series to go into Lost Girls but if you haven't read it and would like to, just grab some crayons and go rent some porn. Then re draw everything you saw with the crayons but instead of whover your porn is about, inject the plot to Truth about Cats and Dogs and make sure the characters are Tootie, Jan Brady and Sissy.

It'll be about the same if not better.

As I said, Alan Moore did good thing. He wroet a Post Modern Superhero story and the world could have used that. The issue for his fans seems to be that they aren't aware that we are now Post Post Modern.

Comics should be done and are now being done in most cases by people who love comics, and not so much by folks with issues with comics. Once you decide that you hate comics and just take exception to what's being published and every publisher breathing then just go to Hollywood. Any one of you have the talent to produce something at least as good as anything Alan Moore doesn't want to claim. As if he'd been writing Hamlet and then someone turned it into a Hugh Grant movie.

More later...


Aaron Goldbeck said...

Good essay. I am going to forward it to cameron, just to hear him hyperventilate.

Aaron Goldbeck said...

oh, and you should get an RSS feed, so i dont have to go through all the trouble of checking back here every day.

Scooter Davenport said...

My beef with Alan Moore is that he likes to use the same format for so many stories.

His run on Supreme, while very good, every issue seems to read the same, with half the comic being flashback and the other present tense. It got old after a few issues.

Banana Oil said...

He once told a Tom Strong story entirely in trading card form though...

Scooter Davenport said...


The older Moore gets the more of a hack he becomes. Sure, he's trying new things, but they are usually very lame.

Unknown said...

I could take a story told in Baseball card form. I deal with all sorts of interesting story telling formats. What I don't like is Alan Moore fans who won't read Tom Strong at all. Doesn't matter what he writes or how he wrote it. That just want to push the freakin Watchmen because Watchmen is the comic for people who alledge that they (and Alan Moore) have out grown superhero comics.

Jen said...

so far it sounds like you dislike alan moore's minions and the hype surrounding him rather than the man himself. if so, i would agree but i still think "v for vendetta" was the best comic i've ever read.

Unknown said...

Yes, it would appear that that's what I am saying and it's true. The minions hack me the hell off BUT I will get to why the man himself yanks my chain too.

I'll get into all of the "Take my name off of it" stuff.

Unknown said...

Also as far as Supreme went, it wasn't that half of the story was a flashback that was important. It was that Alan Moore constructed a history for the entire Awesome line of comics through those flashbacks. THAT was brilliant IMO. If a person could make something created by Rob Liefeld look not just good, but GREAT, then he should be capable of making EVERYTHING great if not better.

Watchmen fans tend to not have read Supreme though...

Anonymous said...

I agree...he peaked. and thats all that needs to be said.

Anonymous said...

I googled 'I Hate Alan Moore' and this site popped up. I saw the Watchmen movie...hated it...and I want my twenty bucks back. For the record, Moore is a 'deconstructivist'. He waddles in...starts tearing down a genre...everyone without good taste goes "ooh!"...then he goes home and drops acid. So now he's up to more no good...but he's shown himself to be a one trick pony and ya'll are bored now so phooey on him. Yeah, the Romans got bored with the circus after awhile too.

Personally...if I ever meet the guy...I'm gonna clock him and take back my twenty bucks.

Post-Post Modern?

Call it what it is...reconfigured crap.

Unknown said...

I loved the movie and like I said before, it was a story that needed to be told.

Moore isn't always a deconstructionist. Tom Strong and Top Ten prove it.

I'm not sure that the Watchmen could have been told any other way. I've read other comics with the premise of "Govt Sponsored Super Heroes" or "Heroes Playing God" and none of them have the impact of Watchmen. Usually it's not long before we're right back to 5 heroes fighting a villain who rides a giant cybernetic dinosaur.

Sometimes this is cool and my gripe with Moore fans is that they really believe that comics died the day Watchmen was written and that there is no place for stories where good guys battle a mad scientist and his weather dominator.

Then those guys go and watch Lost like there's no tomorrow, which is written by guys who grew up on the work of Roy Thomas and Marv Wolfman.

DrCruel said...

My problem with the man is his abysmal, stupid, Left-biased politics. His fans seem to be of the sort that one would find at an ANSWER protest, and appear to be about as ignorant as he is of world politics.

Nothing that rises to the point where I would sock the poor fellow though. When he isn't insulting Americans, Republicans, Christians, or some other Left-approved hate target, he seems to be a generally nice and affable guy. From what I've seen of his kids he appears to be a great dad as well. He's certainly no more abusive than some of our own senators and congressmen, and I have no impulse to sock any of them.

It's just that his politics are taken from the radicals of the 1960s. That anti-US propaganda was already dated by the mid-80s, and is positively ridiculous now. The appeal for some people is that they never accepted that the Bolshevik backers of the Vietnamese communists were playing them for idiots - something like Watchmen, which attempts to make 60's era radicalism "hip" again, is a godsend to such people.

He may very well be a good comic writer. But for me at least, his inane, erroneous, and frequently spiteful commentary on US politics and culture is simply too distracting. I just can't warm up to "art" that has the promotion of Left-wing fascist ideas running through it.