Alan Moore to industry: FU; Industry to Alan Moore: FU2

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201009100145 Alan Moore to industry: FU; Industry to Alan Moore: FU2
Oh snap! Curmudgeonly genius Alan Moore delivers one of his most vinegary interviews yet, taking to Adi Tantimadh at Bleeding Cool mostly about DC’s abortive attempts to get Moore to give his blessing for those Watchmen sequels and spin-offs and what-nots. As Moore tells it, DC sent Dave “Watchmen” Gibbons to discuss the matter with Moore, which, to the shock of no one, upset Moore’s feelings. Moore wonders why DC is even seeking his approval, speculating that perhaps there is some kind of legal reason for the move. (Moore doesn’t seem to think that maybe they were just…trying not to hurt his feelings.) Anyway, Moore also wonders why they even need him anyway and delivers s bunch of sharp zings to today’s comics creators:

When Dave Gibbons phoned me up, he assured me that these prequels and sequels would be handled by ‘the industry’s top-flight talents’. Now, I don’t think that the contemporary industry actually has a ‘top-flight’ of talent. I don’t think it’s even got a middle-flight or a bottom-flight of talent. I mean, like I say, there may be people out there who would still be eager to have their name attached to WATCHMEN even if it was in terms of “Yes, these are the people who murdered WATCHMEN”. I don’t want to see that happen.


Was he that badly frightened by DARK KNIGHT STRIKES AGAIN?

Along the way, Moose also indicates that he doesn’t want to talk to any of his comics pals if they are coming as emissaries and notes that he isn’t friends with V for Vendetta artist David Lloyd any more because Lloyd didn’t thank him for his movie money> And Dave GIbbons, you were skating on thin ice and now it’s broke clear through!

So you know, it’s not as if I have some vendetta against the comics industry, I just want them to leave me alone and to leave my work alone.  I don’t want anything to do with the comics industry in future.  This is regrettable because I’ve got a lot of old friends in the comics industry.  However, given the way that Dave Gibbons was apparently used as a messenger boy, it seems to me that I can’t really afford to have any contact with anybody who is employed in the mainstream comics industry, because, it’s a shame, they may have just wanted to get in touch for old times’ sake, but I can never know that for sure anymore, because I’ve been given an illustration of what they are prepared to do in order to get me to play ball.

 
Moore remains busy with his recent audio project UNEARTHING, his magazine Dodgem Logic and some comics projects for Top Shelf. However, if he wants to leave current comics industry behind, the feeling is decidedly mutual. Cully Hamner got into some tweeterments with Kurt Busiek and others, having caught feelings a bit at Moore’s statements

Y’know, I actually agree with some of Alan Moore’s criticisms of the comics industry and its practices, BUT…To then add that this business is currently *totally devoid of talent* is just a bit uncalled for, I think. Insulting, even.


Skottie Young quipped:

Ever had a friend w/ a girl that cheated on him & says he doesn’t care but won’t stop talking about it. Similar to Alan Moore interviews.

Rob Liefeld remembered past interactions:

Been saying Alan Moore is a certifiable nut job for years. He continues to prove it over and over again. Moore used to dangle Steve Moore and his other buddies over me in order to produce more Supreme work. Funny how kharma works Alan.

And Frank Tieri delivered it Brooklyn style:

My mom thinks I’m top flight talent so fuck you Alan Moore.


Suffice to say… there won’t be many callers in Northampton very soon.

Comments

  1. Charles Knight says:

    With respect to Frank Tieri’s mother, I’d say middle of the table like Chesterfield or Port Vale.

    Still you have to love Moore, he knows how to get a reaction.

  2. As usual, bitter creators of today’s misbegotten ilk snarking on Moore ought to look in the mirror and realize that nothing they’ve made so far will have any lasting value, and yet DC keeps begging Moore to further exploit stuff from decades ago. That’s how far down the rabbit hole quality control has gone for mainstream comics.

  3. Can anyone cite what makes someone a ‘top-flight talent’? Are we basing definitions on paygrade or contribution to medium? Also is this an overall statement on corporate versus independent workmanship? Perspective is a main ingredient in misunderstanding.

  4. This was such a great comment by Alan.

    “Just simply get some of your top-flight talent to put out a book that the wider public outside of the comics field find as interesting or as appealing as the stuff that I wrote 25 years ago. It shouldn’t be too big an ask, should it? I wouldn’t have thought so. And it would solve an awful lot of problems. They must have one creator, surely, in the entire American industry that could do equivalent work to something I did 25 years ago. It would be insulting to think that there weren’t.”

    Amen. I relish every book that sparks as much creative fervor as Watchmen did back when I first read it. They’re out there.

  5. Chris Hero says:

    @KET -YES.

    Anyway, DC would be insane to do Watchmen sequels or prequels without Moore’s approval because they really don’t have much of a legal claim to Watchmen in the first place. But hey, what do I know, I only went to law school. I’m sure a bunch of graphic art people will post comments calling me names in a matter of minutes.

    As far as Moore’s feelings to the mainstream comics industry, I agree 100%. No one’s making stuff now as good as his 25 year old stuff is. Then again, there hasn’t been a novel as good as Gravity’s Rainbow, either.

    With the way Moore’s been treated by the comic industry, I can’t blame him for being upset. Also, anyone who uses a friendship to try using you to get more money for themselves isn’t a real friend anyway.

    Mainstream comic industry – step your game up. If you’re making comics and you’re mad about what Moore said, make better comics.

  6. Jack Fear says:

    …DC would be insane to do Watchmen sequels or prequels without Moore’s approval because they really don’t have much of a legal claim to Watchmen in the first place. But hey, what do I know, I only went to law school.

    Then presumably you’ve heard of work for hire?

  7. Does Moore still have the ability to create something (in any medium) with the impact of Watchmen? Not based on his recent output. It’s fine stuff, but hardly groundbreaking. “Lost Girls”? ABC? His Avatar stuff?

    Pot, kettle.

  8. “Does Moore still have the ability to create something (in any medium) with the impact of Watchmen? Not based on his recent output. It’s fine stuff, but hardly groundbreaking. “Lost Girls”? ABC? His Avatar stuff?

    Pot, kettle.”

    Hmmm….well at least he’d always been willing to experiment, and still is, and bills have to be paid. Let’s face it, if it hadn’t have been for people like Alan and Frank, we wouldn’t have such an “open” field for creators today( and I say open guardedly, because people are still only willing to read spandex and tits comics in droves). And Alan also said that he has always worked in other media, though the last 25 years or so have been mostly taken up by comics, once again, words and phrases taken out of context can be made to suit any purpose and with the immediacy of the internet, we tend to be more “knee-jerk” in our postings and opinions, at least in printed media we have a cooling off period before a thought goes out into the world. I would advise everyone to go read the whole article before offering up any opinion.

  9. Justin Fairfax says:

    Which would be preferred…be a “Steve Ditko”, who never talks about anything, or an “Alan Moore” or “John Byrne” you wish would stay far away from interviews…?

    It is sad that currently Moore is currently not alking with Lloyd, Gibbons or Bisette, the three artists associated with his three biggest contributions to comics! Watch out, Kevin O’Neill…. :)

  10. Man, this reads like one of those bitter times when a band breaks up. One creator wants nothing to do with it and wants to leave it all behind, going so far as to say stuff other people take offense at. There’s the other creator who sees nothing wrong with more work together (and probably wouldn’t mind a little extra pocket money from it) and probably sees how DC’s probably going to do something any way eventually, so why not do something for it. Then there’s DC who has this property that they’d love to do more with, but they risk Alan Moore’s badmouthing it in the press any time they even attempt to do something. Plus all the creators not associated with the original Watchmen stories have this ridiculous aura surrounding the Watchmen to deal with where any work they might create is compared to Watchmen.

    It’s just kind of sad.

    As a consumer of products, I wouldn’t mind a “Tales of the Watchmen” set of books. Something like Michael Chabon’s Escapist comics or Marvel’s recent Strange Tales books. It might be fun. I’d love to conceivably see a story about Moloch drawn by Steve Ditko, or a Dr. Manhattan story written by Grant Morrison, or some stories about the Golden Age Nite-Owl. Maybe something by Paul Chadwick or The Hernandez Brothers or Michael T. Gilbert. Or a Chris Ware Ozymandias story… The mind boggles!

  11. Nurf? says:

    Well, the thing is – I am sad to say – which one in mainstream comics has created something even remotely close to V for Vendetta, Watchmen and From Hell? Or Dark Knight and Year One?

    1986 would have been a good endpoint for costumed heroes. They had been given the most loving and caring send-off of what could have been a good run. But nope…

    I am not talking about the comics medium as such, where Warren Ellis is giddily going mental on absurd concepts that push (not all the times, but often enough) the envelope.

    There is Garth Ennis (with Preacher), yes, there is Brian Azzarello (with 100 Bullets) that are coming close, but most people are quite happily turning out average or below average superhero work.

    And yes, this includes Grant Morrison.

    Don’t get me wrong. It’s nice enough stuff and it may pay the bills (and considering the harsh economic climate that is nothing to sneer at), but honestly? When I flip through the Diamonds catalogue, I barely see anything that is even attempting something of proper scope and depth, most certainly not in the superhero genre. It’s all dressed up PR markting bullshit like “Wolverine goes to hell… will he survive being confronted with his soul?” “The X-Men must look for Dracula to..”

    Some of it is competently written, most of it is more than competently drawn (hell, I love Skottie Young’s art and want to cuddle everything he draws), but they never leave something a two-dimensional pitch line at a retarded studio executive meeting anymore.

    Now, having said that, the market does not seem to be big enough, nor the intended audience wide enough to bring forth a series and/or graphic novel in the mainstream that could carry itself financially.

    It’s shame, that, but then, how many good novels do we get per year from the book publishers? Right, again… not that many. We do get a lot of bad celebrity shit, licensed shit, fake memoir shit…

    So I guess it’s not merely a comic industry problem.

  12. Snikt Snakt says:

    This whole article made me LOL, between Moore’s comments and others comic professionals’ responses. PURE COMEDY GOLD!

    Lets keep it all in perspective here. In the end it all comes down to comic creators are ALL writing/drawing stories about people who wear their underwear on the outside.

  13. I think Alan Moore keeps talking about it because people keep asking him about it. He has said over and over again, even in that interview, he doesn’t want to be bothered with it anymore.

  14. Joe Lawler says:

    “Then presumably you’ve heard of work for hire?”

    But if Watchmen will revert back to Moore and Gibbons if it goes out of print, then presumably it isn’t straight work for hire.

    I could be wrong there.

  15. Alan Moore:
    Just simply get some of your top-flight talent to put out a book that the wider public outside of the comics field find as interesting or as appealing as the stuff that I wrote 25 years ago. It shouldn’t be too big an ask, should it? I wouldn’t have thought so. And it would solve an awful lot of problems. They must have one creator, surely, in the entire American industry that could do equivalent work to something I did 25 years ago. It would be insulting to think that there weren’t.

    Rob Liefeld:
    “A couple of the artists I gave [Alan Moore's script] to handed it back. The first ten pages is some of the most difficult, visually, it’s hard to crack. We’ll probably publish it in script form. I can’t crack this, life’s too short.”

    hihihihi

  16. I think, in a very arrogant way, Moore was commenting that DC doesn’t act as though they have any “top-flight” talent. Yeah, the Grant Morrissons and Goeff Johns are fan favorites, but where is DC’s, upcoming talent? Where is there next Geoff Johns or next big thing that isn’t being done by one of those two? We love their work but even while trumpeting Bendis, Marvel’s CB Cebulski is constantly promoting emerging talent. So yeah, Moore was inelegant but there are kernels of truth in there.

  17. The whole “no one has made anything good as my 25 year old work” thing may be true (for your value of “true” – great art really isn’t measurable), but that does not equall to saying “the comic market/industry/medium/food court/world is in artistic decline”. Is there a lot of crap out there? Sure there is, there always is more crap than good because genius is rarer than stupidity.

    A literary critic might complain that no one has made anything good as Infinite Jest (15 years old), Catch 22 (60 years old) Ulysses (90 years old) or The Divine Comedy (700 years old) – but they would not claim the literature is now worthless. Just because Citizen Kane always wins “best film” does not mean all other films are pointless rubbish. “Not the best” is not the same as “worst”

    Who knows what will be remembered in 25 years really? Can Moore be assured that his recent work will be put on the same level as Watchmen? I don’t read as much comics as other people posting here, and I only got heavily into it in the last few years – but there is no shortage of great comics to be found in any given month, I cannot see only negativity in an industry that gave us, In the last 10 years : Seaguy, The Filth, Chew, Unwritten, The Horde, Planetary, Queen and Country, Criminal, Jimmy Corrigan, ASTERIOS POLYP, Blankets, Scott Pilgrim, The Walking Dead, Human Target, Transmetropolitan, The Goon, Alice in Sunderland, X-Statix, All Star Superman, WE3, I Kill Giants, Pluto, Flight, Lucifer, The New Frontier…

    You may not like all of them (hell, I don’t), but if nothing on your list warms your heart than you are living in North Pole (or, apparently, you are Alan Moore).

  18. Lovely. An elegant informative interview by a living example of how an artist in modern times can approach their work with integrity and honor.

  19. I’ve never understood Moore’s attitude towards others using his creations when so much of what he has created over the years involved the work of others. He’s taken characters created by others and used them in stories I doubt the original creators would approve. For instance, making Alan Quartermaine an opium adict or featuring Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz in a porn book.

  20. Ian Daffern says:

    I’m not looking for new Watchmen stories either; but it is strange that he’s spent the last ten years telling stories that ‘remix’ and recombine characters from fiction; yet is content to say that his own are off limits.

  21. I thought the very reason Moore now works with public domain characters is so that he wouldn’t have to go through this stuff anymore?

    He clearly has no interest in movies, toys, video games, licensing, etc.. If he doesn’t own the characters they will no longer be after him (either directly or through his collaborators) for the rights to use them.

  22. It is remarkable the level of clueless contempt and misplaced resentment some people have for Alan Moore, when he has been guilty of nothing but making brilliant comics that they supposedly love.

  23. Synsidar says:

    Moore might have let his temper get the better of him when he dissed comics writers generally, since he probably hasn’t read many comics during the last several years. Perhaps he hasn’t seen universal critical acclaim for a comics writer in the press?

    There is material on the Web concerning unauthorized sequels. They’re not all bad. Two una-sequels about Sherlock Holmes have gotten good reviews. In a 2/15/09 essay on una-sequels, Charles McGrath wrote:

    There are a number of prequels and sequels that do this — that genuinely enhance our appreciation of the original text. The most brilliant of all may be Jean Rhys’s “Wide Sargasso Sea,” which retells the story of “Jane Eyre” from the point of view of the first Mrs. Rochester, the madwoman in the attic. It helped give rise to new, feminist readings of a lot of Victorian fiction. [. . .]

    Yet the urge to write sequels and prequels is almost always an homage of sorts. We don’t want more of books we hate. The books that get re-written and re-imagined are beloved. We don’t want them ever to be over. We pay them the great compliment of imagining that they’re almost real: that there must be more to the story, and that characters we know so well — Elizabeth Bennet, for one, or Sherlock Holmes, who has probably inspired more sequels than any other fictional being — must have more to their lives.

    A WATCHMEN sequel isn’t a guaranteed failure, but writing a successful unplanned sequel to a classic would, I’d think, require having such a complete understanding of the work and the writer’s intentions that he could be the writer’s confidant. He’d also have to have comparable skills and talents. Such a writer would probably be deterred by Moore’s antipathy to the project.

    SRS

  24. Brenticles says:

    For someone who is through with comics and doesn’t want to be asked about Watchmen, he sure does spend a lot of time talking about comics and answering questions about Watchmen.

  25. Seems like Moore is living out Harvey Dent’s line from Dark Knight, “You either die a hero or see yourself live long enough to become the villain.”

  26. ” but it is strange that he’s spent the last ten years telling stories that ‘remix’ and recombine characters from fiction; yet is content to say that his own are off limits.”

    I see this sentiment a lot, and I’d like to point out that Alan Moore has never said that his characters are off limits. He seems quite ambivalent to the idea of a Watchmen sequel. The issue at stake is that DC feels that legally they need his permission to create works using his characters and he has made it clear that he doesn’t want to deal with them as a company. It’s not about people using his characters. (You’ll notice that he’s not throwing a similar tantrum about the new Tom Strong and the Robots of Doom miniseries.)
    It seems, at least the way Moore interprets it, that DC wants or needs his approval for Watchmen spin-offs. He doesn’t want to give it to them because he feels they have treated him poorly. You might say that’s being a poor sport, or a cranky bastard, or what have you. But the only way that the Watchmen situation would in anyway be analagous to Moore’s use of public domain characters would be if Alan Moore not only used Wendy in Lost Girls, but also prevented J.M. Barrie from properly profiting from the original Peter Pan first.

  27. Brenticles, He’s said a number of times he is always willing to answer any question asked of him. He would prefer not to have his opinion of Secret Agent Infinite Crisis Wars Attacks asked, but its the interviewers time so he just starts talking.

    And on some level I understand it, but I really agree with Jamie and really wish people would stop asking him the mainstream industry. I know its good for Bleeding Cool’s (or whatever site it is that does that month’s interview) page views but is that really worth all the kerfluffle.

    Full disclosure – I think Promethea is the greatest comic series of all time.

    But just like everyone else on the face of the planet, and for some reason this still seems to amaze a lot of people, Alan Moore can be an asshole sometimes.

  28. I wonder if Moore’s comment wasn’t more about his perception that DC is more interested in wringing every last drop of profit from its existing properties than it is in finding and fostering new talent and new work. We might not get something that’s better than Watchmen (though I think we have, and will), but we will almost certainly get something better than “Dr. Manhattan in ‘Nam.”

  29. Joe Lawler says:

    “He’s said a number of times he is always willing to answer any question asked of him. He would prefer not to have his opinion of Secret Agent Infinite Crisis Wars Attacks asked, but its the interviewers time so he just starts talking.”

    Exactly. People need to stop asking Moore questions he’s answered dozens of times.

  30. Patrick Meaney says:

    The big thing that confuses me about this is the Watchmen movie failed on a financial level. I don’t think WB is going to invest in any further Watchmen stuff in film or TV. And, I don’t think many people are clamoring for Watchmen sequel or prequel comics.

    I’m sure there’d be an interest if they happened, but the zeitgeist that produced Watchmen is over, and there’s been a lot of new ground broken since, both in superheroes and out. Moore may say that people have spent the past 25 years just trying to live up to his stories, but I’d argue he’s spent the past 15 years of superhero work trying to live up to Flex Mentallo.

  31. Tom Spurgeon says:

    Which is particularly awesome because Flex Mentallo didn’t come out until 1996.

  32. I find it interesting all the speculation we’ve seen about DC mining every last drop out of something that sequels for which are simply rumor and conjecture at this point. Most of which the evidence for with has been provided by someone with an obvious and deep seated bias against the company he speaks continually speaks about bu refuses to speak to.

    Also, not for nothing, but DC and Warner Brothers are a company. One could argue their whole existence is based on the concept of exploiting their own properties. That’s what comic book companies do.

    As far as “nothing being original in 25 years”, this is clearly false as is shown by the multitude of titles already presented in many responses already, and it shows Alan Moore being Alan Moore as he has done time and time again in the past few years. Nothing that comes out today good every be as awe inspiring or influential to culture as the things done in the mid 80’s, I know. Except there’s plenty of great stuff that comes out. It’s just that the large majority of the comic book buying public doesn’t try or want to read it. So because DC is corporation and is going to attempt to sell as many books as possible, because it’s what they are supposed to do as a corporation, they are going to sell what people are buying.

    It’s fine for the supposed comic literate to piss all over today’s books and constantly throw back to the times of Moore and Miller when “times where really good and comics were truly challenging” but I’m sick of hearing it myself.

    Put up or shut up. If your so disgusted by the current state of comics today, go create something that will challenge the public and can stand next to Dark Knight or Watchmen. Prove it. But please please please stop blustering about something that you have no intention on attempting to change.

  33. @Tom Spurgeon: Which just goes to show you what an accomplished magician and writer he is.

  34. @Joel Lawler I’m sorry but no one is forcing him to talk about this. If you don’t want to talk about Watchmen anymore and you no longer want anything to do with it, than stop talking about it. DC’s official stance on this whole sequel thing has pretty much been no comment for the most part. Their not leaking stories to rumor sites or anything like that, at least to my knowledge. So if you want to be done with it, be done with it. That’s the most hypocritical part of the whole “interview”.

  35. Tom Spurgeon says:

    Wait, it wasn’t an interview?

  36. Horatio Weisfeld says:

    Who’s Alan Moore?

  37. Horatio Weisfeld says:

    The POST A COMMENT is displaying others’ names and email addresses for some reason.

  38. Horatio Weisfeld says:

    Hrrmmmmm

  39. Tom, Alan Moore should need no defending, but thanks for doing it anyhow. Reading supposed fans of Alan Moore publicly trash him for having the audacity to speak up about his gross and prolonged mistreatment by DC comics is nothing short of nausea inducing.

    For a bunch of schlubbs who grew up reading superhero comics, you would think some of the grade-school lessons about justice they inundate themselves with would have rubbed off more.

  40. Since Moore is still active (i.e. his Avatar book) does that mean he’s basically shit-talking his own collaborators as well?

  41. Moore: “They must have one creator, surely, in the entire American industry that could do equivalent work to something I did 25 years ago. It would be insulting to think that there weren’t.”

    Heh.

    Hahahahahahah!

    No. No, Alan, I’m afraid not. You’ve moved on, Gaiman has moved on, Morrison seems strictly concerned with giving his Masters exactly what they want & while Bendis and Whedon are certainly crafting some enjoyable comics as of late, it’s the literary equivalent of a nice bag of Cheet-O’s. Nothing wrong with that – but neither The Avengers or Buffy are going to change the landscape of comics anytime soon.

    The long & short of it is this: There isn’t anyone – at least not up at DC – who has either the talent or the blessing to break new ground. They’re far more concerned with pleasing 40+ year old fanboys with nostalgic events – despite the fact that this audience keeps dwindling with the passing of time & sales figures concretely prove that. A Geoff Johns is more in line with what DC wants in its stable than another you: Someone who will crank out continuity-fueled pap that makes them feel all warm & fuzzy inside.

    Comics are, far the most part, comfort food these days (not to mention prime mining ground for an equally intellectually-bankrupt Hollywood). Rather than being a medium where anything or everything is possible from the starting point of a blank page – it has become more of a recycling plant. That’s why they want your nod of approval to mass produce a shit-ton of Watchmen crap. Because rather than take the risk of hiring & publishing someone new who will turn the industry on its ear, it’s far easier to simply churn out ‘Rorschach: The Virtues of Selfishness #1-12, the hardcover collected edition, the paperback collected edition, and the Absolute collected edition.

  42. MHF, if the comics you read are just comfort food, I would kindly suggest you are reading the wrong comics. I highly recommend checking out the brilliant stuff coming out regularly from publishers such as Fantagraphics, Top Shelf and Drawn and Quarterly. There is more good stuff coming out now than there ever has been in the history of comics, in my view… just not in the insular and dried-up world of corporate superhero comics.

  43. Seconing Horatio’s middle comment. I nearly posted as Brian Jacoby from Secret Headquarters earlier. I’ve never even MET Brian!

    Something going on with the ident fields today.

  44. Comic2read says:

    Other comic book writers and artists are very jealous of Alan Moore. They wish they could be as creative. I don’t take their comments too seriously.

    DC should have seen miles away how Moore would react to them sending Dave Gibbons.

    DC should watch that Wiseguy episode how a record compnay keeps trying to buy off a resisitant John Lennon type but Vinnie persuades the famous musician by offering an intangible (the best pastrami sandwich in New York.)

    It’s not money they should offer. If I was DC, I’d offer a new line to him as “Alan Moore Comics” with his script approval and make him an editor.

  45. Dave Elliott says:

    I think Alan did this interview to make clear his position so people would stop asking him about it. He went into detail and make his stance very clear (at least to me). Yet people are still trying to read something else into his words as though they don’t want to hear them.

    In other countries when a creator no longer wishes his series to continue, that choice is theirs (and should be).

  46. @Dave How was his position not already clear about this in the multiple interviews he’s granted over the last 10 years or so?

  47. Dave Elliott says:

    @Erik. It’s not whether it was clear to us but Alan clearly states people are still asking. What was interesting is that he chose to be so open about his relationships with his other creators.

  48. I think Moore’s actions, by and large, speak louder than his interviews. I disagree with his blanket statements about the comics medium, his statement regarding the talent pool in mainstream comics is similarly overreaching and unfounded. But I respect how he’s handled himself in the face of repeated bullshit and how he’s dealt with his collaborators regarding credit and compensation. He’s his own man, something we champion in our scripts and our comics and movies but rarely ever in real life.

  49. “The big thing that confuses me about this is the Watchmen movie failed on a financial level.”

    But as a book, it was overwhelmingly successful.

  50. Scapegoat says:

    Always amazing… I’m a small artist from Germany, and I find that even in the small community of artists around me, the same conflict happens over and over again.
    If an artist has a vision, brings it to life, giving his all – he is likely to be exploited by some group or company. At first, on the way to success, everybody will be supportive and loyal, but with success comes greed. And there’s nothing viler than a greedy company. And as always the artist has to make a decision: join the wolves, or turn around and walk away.
    Alan Moore clearly did the latter.
    Now why won’t he just let it rest? Because, dear fans, of YOU. Let’s just think about Joss Whedon continuing Buffy as a comicbook. The first thing coming up was the banter “He’s doing it for the money!”
    Now, Alan Moore has a lot of self respect, and he wouldn’t want to be accused of that kind of corruption. So the best thing he can do is to keep telling people over and over again that he just does not want to be compromised, and that he is willing to sacrifice everything before his reputation – even friendships.
    He has never exploited any of his co-creators, and never backed away from speaking out loud.
    In this, he has been an inspiration and role model for me as an artist.
    So, why can’t he just be left alone, as he clearly has chosen? What would you rather have him do? Sell out to companies that want to exploit his best works even MORE?
    Or just be silent and NOT be an inspiration to other artists?
    This is one man of honour, and he’s fighting the good fight. Right on.

  51. Micah says:

    We3. Frank Quitely will be preserved in jars and studied, just like Akira.

  52. I say we do as he asks, and leave him alone. no more interviews, no more attention…and if DC owns the characters…well, its their choice to do what they please and let the audience decide with their $$$.

  53. @Jimmy Well said.

  54. hikaru go says:

    If he really wants to be left alone, he should think twice of his verbosity. John Lennon was tired of questions about the Beatles but y’know… if John Lennon talks about the Beatles, people are going to listen.

  55. Indeed we would. He’s dead, you know? If he spoke from beyond the grave, hell, even I would listen.
    Seriously, it is up to DC to decide what they waste their money on. It’s all about movies these days. Since WB owns DC, I don’t think they need to make profits on comics. Those are only commercials for movies-to-be-made, and people actually PAY for reading those commercials. So, if they want a prequel on Watchmen (which would have to include totally new characters, since Watchmen has told us its history ad nauseam already), who will really care? Nobody’s gonna read that, because the movie sucked. And the fans of the original comic will not read it because Alan Moore’s name won’t be on that comic, but he is like the god of comics or something.

  56. Scott Rowland says:

    Not really impressed with Moore as a person. Some of his work was quite good, some perhaps also good, but not to my taste. But wow, he seems like such a jerk to work with.

    Sad that Moore has decided to be a jerk to the his co-creators on V for Vendetta, Watchmen, Saga of the Swamp Thing, and 1963. (Note, that his not wanting to do a project is not why he’s a jerk — it’s perfectly reasonable for him to decline a project he’s not interested in — it’s his personal skills that are lacking.)

    I’m looking forward to Steve Bissette’s Tales of the Uncanny/ Naut comics much more than any future Alan Moore work.

  57. The hypocrisy and bs that comes from Alan Moore never ceases to amaze me. Truly how he can talk about no one doing anything original when most of his work is far from that. Not to mention the idea that Watchmen or anything else he wrote for DC is his is also laughable.

    But in the end i’m not surprised by what he’s turned into let’s face it, alot of fans and media are mostly responsible for making him the way he is. When you get praised as a genius and everyone talks about how great your work is, it’s hard to not become a deluded and insane individual. Don’t be surprised if Morrison sounds the same when he’s Moore’s age.

    Thankfully, not everyone has bought the Moore is a genius stuff and sure as hell doesn’t worship Watchmen and Killing Joke as great work which they aren’t. Some people see through the bs and can call him out on what he truly is overated and a sad bitter example of what not to become.

    FU2 is the perfect reply to Moore and his crap.

  58. You know, having read this piece and the comments ascribing any criticism of Alan Moore to “jealousy,” I would like to point out a few things in my own defense.

    1) Not once did I criticize (or even comment on) the quality of Alan Moore’s work;

    2) Not once did I criticize (or even comment on) the quality of Alan Moore’s character or any aspect of his person– I do not know the man, and therefore don’t have the right to;

    3) Not once have I ascribed motive or intent;

    4) Not once have I criticized *anything* other than a *single, specific comment* as being uncalled-for and insulting to an industry of creators as whole.

    All I’ve done is point to *one statement* and muse that it was, well, kind of mean. That’s it– and that after saying I agreed with many of his other points. I did not take it as a personal insult, as the man did not insult me personally– I doubt he’s even *aware* of me.

    I love and admire Alan Moore’s body of work– it was an influence on me as much as the rest of my generation of creators– but I don’t deify people. He’s a human being who made a public comment I found to be rude and obnoxious, and I expressed that opinion as a member of an industry and a generation. I stand by what I said.

    Now, “jealous?” You bet your ass.

  59. I have a question. Are the people who are saying that Alan Moore isn’t a good writer OR original the same people who say that Alex Ross is a terrible artist?

  60. “I have a question. Are the people who are saying that Alan Moore isn’t a good writer OR original the same people who say that Alex Ross is a terrible artist?”

    Are you suggesting that one’s opinion of one creator has anything to do with one’s opinion of the other?

  61. Ross & Busiek’s Marvels and Ross & Waid’s Kingdom Come don’t even come close to Watchmen or DK Returns? I’m just asking….

  62. Nawid A says:

    Honestly, every time I see a Moore interview, I sigh, not because I don’t value his views, but because the backlash against him is ridiculous, when in reality, I can’t find a single account of him being the wrongdoer.

    And he is, without a doubt, the greatest comic writer in comics history. Maybe not the greatest comics individual, but out of the writer only class, I can’t name many to compete.

  63. Nawid A says:

    Also no respectable writer would want to do a Watchmen sequel.

    DC would have to go out of house for that wouldn’t they? Who would they get to write it? Their “top” writers (I’m ranking them with how the company seems to treat them not my personal opinion) are Johns and Morrison. I’d read a Morrison Watchmen book only because it probably wouldn’t be much about Watchmen at all but I’d think DC would want a less eccentric take.

    I’m thinking of my favorite writers and cartoonists in comics now. Cooke couldn’t care less, I’m sure. It’s not Aaron’s style. It’s not Hickman’s style. It’s not Ellis’ style. Either of those three would probably avoid it like the plague. Kirkman only really works well on inspired projects. Rucka would never do it and his storytelling style is pretty much the opposite of Moore’s.

    Yeah, I guess I’d read Morrison’s Watchmen. But I don’t know if he’d do it either. Anyone else and I don’t give a fuck.

  64. “Ross & Busiek’s Marvels and Ross & Waid’s Kingdom Come don’t even come close to Watchmen or DK Returns? I’m just asking….”

    Says who?, this is what Moore and his worshippers forget that not everyone has drunk the Moore is a genius and Watchmen is the greatest thing ever kool-aid.

    I’ll easily take what Busiek/Ross and Waid and Ross did on those books over Watchmen and it’s not because of the art. It’s because both told stories that were good from start to finish unlike Watchmen will falls apart at the end like alot of Moore’s work.

  65. Um, Just pointing out that the above post supposedly from me actually wasn’t from me, and that there seems to be problems with the comment function.

  66. “Are you suggesting that one’s opinion of one creator has anything to do with one’s opinion of the other?”

    No. I’m asking because I really want to know.

  67. Wraith says:

    Maybe now both Marvel and DC will get a clue and stop bending over butt backwards in order to make popular and/or critically acclaimed creators like Moore happy.

    Instead of trying to do everything in their power to make Moore happy so that he can do new work for them, the Big 2 should start offering work to those older creators who (a) actually want to work for them and (b) needs the work. How about hiring Larry Hama,Norm Breyfogle (sp),Priest,Scott Lobdell,Jim Starlin,Sal Buscema,Herb Trimpe,and countless other older creators who have done more for the Big 2 and the industry as a whole, then Moore has done.

  68. Dr Thomas says:

    I take “top flight creators” to mean anyone who has created a work equal to Watchmen. Has anyone at DC or Marvel created such a work in the last 5 years or so?

  69. Nawid A says:

    If we’re just talking superheroes than I suppose All Star Superman by Morrison/Quitely and The New Frontier by Cooke could be called equal to Watchmen.

    Cooke would never do it (and he’s a terrible fit for it) and as I said before, I would actually read a Morrison Watchmen book. Because it would likely be insane.

  70. I think the problem is to find a work as layered as Watchmen. “New Frontier” was a fine work, but very straight-forward. As a matter of fact, it was made to connect lots of different story to one gigantic plot. It was the opposite of a multi-layered story in its intention. The purpose was to straighten out the many backstories of the many heroes in it, with a little critical undertone as to the anti-communist policy. The political matters were a straight homage to Watchmen, which also gave superheroes a political significance.
    Watchmen, however, does have many aspects that I have – pains me to admit it – not found in other comics.
    The very fabric of the Watchmen-universe is laced with a basic criticism of humanity itself. I mean, what does it tell about human arrogance if the smartest man on Earth comes up with a plan so convoluted, so bizarre, so big, and then it all falls to pieces because of a madman’s journal in the hands of a fat kid (as it is quite clear how this all ends after the last page to me). If that is the smartest man alive, boy are we in trouble. And I’ve found no other comic that oes that far in unmasking us as simpletons and buffoons.
    So, no, there hasn’t been a comic like this. Just my opinion.

  71. Nawid A says:

    @SamE

    Agreed.

  72. @Dave Elliot: Bravo Sir.

    @EJ: Huh!Well…let me tell you an anecdote about Alan Moore. When I went to his massive castle there in Northampton and approached him on his golden throne, eyes lowered so as not to offend this magnificent god, supplicating myself, supine on the obsidian floor, trembling with fear and awe. Come to beg at the well of all knowledge that is *echoey voice here* ALAN MOOOOORE. I shat myself, I can tell you. (That was all irony, if you missed it)

    You are making suppositions about a man’s character, sirrah! And that is not on. I mean, it would be the same as me calling you a “twat”,based solely on your posts here, but I wouldn’t because I have no idea what you are like.

    Please, if you have nothing to add to the discussion that isn’t relevant then keep quiet.

    Oh Yeah,before I forget- though I don’t like his work at the moment, I hear Grant Morrison is a very nice chap too.

  73. :@EJ: Huh!Well…let me tell you an anecdote about Alan Moore. When I went to his massive castle there in Northampton and approached him on his golden throne, eyes lowered so as not to offend this magnificent god, supplicating myself, supine on the obsidian floor, trembling with fear and awe. Come to beg at the well of all knowledge that is *echoey voice here* ALAN MOOOOORE. I shat myself, I can tell you. (That was all irony, if you missed it)

    You are making suppositions about a man’s character, sirrah! And that is not on. I mean, it would be the same as me calling you a “twat”,based solely on your posts here, but I wouldn’t because I have no idea what you are like.

    Please, if you have nothing to add to the discussion that isn’t relevant then keep quiet.

    Oh Yeah,before I forget- though I don’t like his work at the moment, I hear Grant Morrison is a very nice chap too.”

    I’m just calling him out for what he is, I know alot of people get caught up when it comes to Moore that they can’t see him for the bitter nutjob he’s become but others do. And that criticism is just as valid and relevant as the worshipping of him that goes on here which is sure as hell not ironic.

  74. @EJ: Dude, do you read the other posts? look at what Dave Elliot said above, because someone’s eccentric ( and let’s face it, it helps in this job) or doesn’t follow the herd(as most people are happy to do these days, you only need to see the drivel that’s served up on the telly and on the big screen, and listen to the crap that passes for music these days) and they are “a nutjob”. Just because someone has the brass balls to plough their own furrow (an alien concept these days)then they have slipped over the edge into insanity?

    Just for the record; I love a lot of Alan’s work. I certainly respect him as an artist, whatever medium he chooses to work in, but that doesn’t mean I slavishly fawn over everything he does. I hated Tom Strong and Supreme, I’m not a massive fan of “A Small Killing” and I jigged along to “The Emperors of Ice-cream” lo those many years ago, though it was akin to going to see one’s eccentric uncle getting up and having a bash at some avant-guard music, but I can still respect what he’s trying to do.

    In the whole of the interview I don’t think that a bitter word was really spoken by Alan. I got a sense of sadness that he asked friends not to talk about a certain subject and they insisted on bringing that subject up, even though they knew they might be risking what was probably a special relationship. Alan’s a person who has been stabbed in the back so many times over the years that he has every right to be bitter, but I can assure you that he’s not, even from just reading his words in an interview you get that!

  75. @NawidA: Both those books are very good, they are different to Watchmen, they are perhaps not so densely layered with the subtle underscoring that Alan gave to his story. But Both are fine books, that perhaps would never have existed if WATCHMEN had never been published.

  76. “@EJ: Dude, do you read the other posts? look at what Dave Elliot said above, because someone’s eccentric ( and let’s face it, it helps in this job) or doesn’t follow the herd(as most people are happy to do these days, you only need to see the drivel that’s served up on the telly and on the big screen, and listen to the crap that passes for music these days) and they are “a nutjob”. Just because someone has the brass balls to plough their own furrow (an alien concept these days)then they have slipped over the edge into insanity?

    Just for the record; I love a lot of Alan’s work. I certainly respect him as an artist, whatever medium he chooses to work in, but that doesn’t mean I slavishly fawn over everything he does. I hated Tom Strong and Supreme, I’m not a massive fan of “A Small Killing” and I jigged along to “The Emperors of Ice-cream” lo those many years ago, though it was akin to going to see one’s eccentric uncle getting up and having a bash at some avant-guard music, but I can still respect what he’s trying to do.

    In the whole of the interview I don’t think that a bitter word was really spoken by Alan. I got a sense of sadness that he asked friends not to talk about a certain subject and they insisted on bringing that subject up, even though they knew they might be risking what was probably a special relationship. Alan’s a person who has been stabbed in the back so many times over the years that he has every right to be bitter, but I can assure you that he’s not, even from just reading his words in an interview you get that!”

    Ok let’s get a couple of things clear just so that we’re on the same page, i’m not calling Moore a nutjob because he’s eccentric. I don’t care about that, the guy can be as weird and against mainstream as he wants. What i’m calling him out on is him and his whole conspiracy schtick, because no the world nor DC comics is trying to get him and he sounds insane when he makes those claims.

    As far as him not sounding bitter I don’t know what to tell you but he’s been bitter for years this isn’t new. The guy continually talks about how much he’s over comics and past squabbles, yet he never seems to shut up about either. He makes ridiculous accusations about today’s comics and writers without reading any of the material to me he’s bitterness personified.

    That’s my biggest beef with the guy, if he’s over comics and wants to do eclectic work outside the mainstream fine. Just make sure to not throw dirt on things he’s knows nothing about. Not to mention continually complaining about how you’ve been screwed then turning around and slapping DC in the face when the new management is trying to make amends makes him look even worse.

    Finally let’s not go overboard with The Watchmen hyperbole just like Alan Moore just as much good comics would have been release with his existance as without.

  77. … turning around and slapping DC in the face when the new management is trying to make amends…

    Sort of like how a wife beater makes amends by buying a diamond ring.

  78. so am i the only one thinking he’s mad at that leah girl? (and for once i aint talking about the rumble girls one) you know the writer of that sherlock holmes book, and that dracula book. and damn i knew people hate their kids, but to go out and diss their work like that…. this is worse than the julio iglesias wont sing with enrique debacle.

    it’s kinda sad he’s being this mean to his daughter when she’s pregnant. geesh, worst granpa ever.

  79. “Sort of like how a wife beater makes amends by buying a diamond ring.”

    Yes because that’s exactly how Alan Moore has been treated by DC what is wrong you? smfh.

  80. Nawid A says:

    @Polly

    Where is this even coming from?

  81. Brett says:

    So, DC Comics has PROMISED (!!!) to get their ‘TOP-FLIGHT-TALENT’ to work on prequels and sequels that revist Watchmen, a work of art from 1986 that revitalized the comics industry?

    The last time DC Comics had TOP-FLIGHT-TALENT revist a work of art from 1986 that revitalized the industry was just recently voted ‘The Worst Batman Story Ever Written’ when Kevin Smith lifted his leg so he can leave his mark on Miller and Mazzucchelli’s Batman Year One by having Batman pee in his panties during one of the most pivitol scenes in the work.

    I’m with Alan on this one. The disgusting practices of those leading the industry speak for itself, echoing from the lowest sewers of filth and excrement.

  82. Brett says:

    You know, come to think of it, its too bad Spider-Man wasn’t published by DC.

    I’d unleash all of their TOP-FLIGHT-TALENT on Aunt May.

    Problem solved.

  83. Allen Rubinstein says:

    I’d say we’re at most ten years away from total recluse.

    I read one issue of the “second season” of Top Ten. There were no sneaks in it. It wasn’t an incompetent story, as far as I could tell from one chapter, but Top Ten was all about the sneaks. No cameos, no jokey appearances in the corners, nada. It was just a straight-forward ensemble cop drama with super powers. What was the fucking point? Did they hold a meeting and say, “We want to make sure and suck all the joy out of reading this comic. Let’s remove it’s most compelling aspect.”

    I thought the most recent League installment was really boring.

  84. Interesting that you chose to use a photo I took of him over ten years ago:)

  85. Nurf? says:

    @ Allen Rubinstein

    You do know that Moore didn’t write Top Ten: Season 2, right? The lasat thing Moore wrote there was “The Forty-Niners” graphic novel.

  86. “if it hadn’t have been for people like Alan and Frank, we wouldn’t have such an ‘open’ field for creators today”

    One could also argue that Frank Miller and Alan Moore helped narrow the field.

    Instead of having a more diverse industry, we just have writers/artists who create super hero comics with presumably more diversity. I would say that FROM HELL, LOST GIRLS, or SIN CITY did more to expand the art form than WATCHMEN or DARK KNIGHT (but none of those works were as popular as their dark-gritty-super-hero stories, which remain the norm).

  87. stealthwise says:

    I’ve been reading quite a few superhero comics lately, and I gotta say, I don’t see anyone providing anything that looks like “top-tier” work. There’s stuff that’s good for its genre, but not a whole hell of a lot that’s innovative or really going outside of the box in terms of craft.

  88. I think sitting at home all day smoking pot has resulted in Moore watching a touch too much X-Factor. Is he trying to become the comic book Simon Cowell? His comments are downright offensive.

    Sometimes I think he forgets that all he did was create Watchmen, he didn’t create comic books as a medium. Yes he’s an amazing writer and he’s always spouting off about how no one has done anything as good as it since then. Does he decide to forget that he himself hasn’t done anything as good since then as well?

  89. A acceptable faculty of appearance can be developed by searching at altered magazines, accepting account of what’s in and what’s out. Going to museums is consistently a acceptable affair to do as well.

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