Next SFF Author: Christopher Moore
Previous SFF Author: Michael Moorcock

SFF Author: Alan Moore

Alan Moore (born 18 November 1953) is a British writer best known for his comic books including Watchmen, V for Vendetta, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen and From Hell. He is frequently described as one of the best graphic novel writers ever. Moore started writing for British underground and alternative fanzines in the late 1970s before achieving success publishing comic strips in such magazines as 2000 AD and Warrior. He then was asked by DC Comics to work on major characters such as Batman (Batman: The Killing Joke) and Superman (Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?), substantially developed the character Swamp Thing. In the late 1980s and early 1990s he left the comic industry mainstream and went independent for a while, working on experimental work such as the epic From Hell, the pornographic Lost Girls, and the prose novel Voice of the Fire. He then returned to the mainstream later in the 1990s, working for Image Comics, before developing America’s Best Comics, an imprint through which he published works such as The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen and the occult-based Promethea.
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Saga of the Swamp Thing: Book One: The figures seem to jump out of the pages

In this column, I feature comic book reviews written by my students at Oxford College of Emory University. Oxford College is a small liberal arts school just outside of Atlanta, Georgia. I challenge students to read and interpret comics because I believe sequential art and visual literacy are essential parts of education at any level (see my Manifesto!). I post the best of my students’ reviews in this column. Today, I am proud to present a review by Jacob Brummeler:

Jacob Brummeler is a sophomore at Oxford College of Emory University and is pursuing a double major in Playwriting and Media Studies.


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Watchmen by Alan Moore (writer) & Dave Gibbons (Artist)

Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons

What if superheroes were real? I mean really “real”: what if they grew old and got fat, had spouses and families, carried emotional baggage (sometimes a serious psychosis), and just generally had to deal with everyday life? These super-heroes aren’t inherently all good, either. Just like public servants — police, politicians, doctors, etc. — many begin with the best intentions, but some become jaded and others are only motivated by self-interest from the start. In other words, if superheroes were real, they would be just like us,


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V for Vendetta by Alan Moore

V for Vendetta by Alan Moore

For those who claim that comics lack sufficient depth and complexity, fans generally recommend Alan Moore’s Watchmen, V for Vendetta and From Hell, Frank Miller’s DARK KNIGHT RETURNS and SIN CITY series, and Neil Gaiman’s SANDMAN series. These are considered “gateway” titles likely to convince skeptics that comics (often labeled “graphic novels” to lend them more gravitas) are a legitimate artistic medium for sophisticated and compelling storytelling for adults.


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Batman: The Killing Joke by Alan Moore

Batman: The Killing Joke by Alan Moore

Frank Miller’s Batman: The Dark Knight Returns (1986) and Batman: Year One (1988) completely reinvented the caped crusader as a dark and conflicted figure. This time, it was Alan Moore’s turn to reinvent Batman’s greatest rival, that homicidal madman The Joker. Batman: The Killing Joke (1988) tells its compelling story in just 51 pages, but the writing and artwork are so phenomenal that it has retained a legendary status.


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Masked: Superheroes move into the realm of prose

Masked edited by Lou Anders

Superheroes — and supervillains — have always been problematic. They are usually all but impossible to kill, but have a single vulnerability that everyone seems to know about, and to aim for, a tradition that goes all the way back to Achilles (who was invulnerable because he was dipped in the River Styx as a baby — except for the ankle by which his mother held him when doing the dipping). Even after death, they always seem to come back in some form or another; Superman, for instance,


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Next SFF Author: Christopher Moore
Previous SFF Author: Michael Moorcock

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