The first, and most important, thing to say about Alan Moore’s Jerusalem is that it’s not, for the most part, a difficult book to read.

For London <-|-> From Hell

November 12th, 2015

The following post was written as a response to The London Graphic Novel Network’s discussion of From Hell

Here’s Graphic Novel Network/Kraken bod Joel‘s final flourish, just so you have some idea what I’m arguing against:

when I read [Moore's] stuff I get the feeling is that nothing has been lead to chance and everything is designed for very definite and exact reasons you know? If other comics are a little jelly and playful and “make your own mind up!” – Alan Moore in a labyrinth of cold hard steel: arranged in such a way that the only possible stance you’ll allowed is that of a mouse – desperately trying to find its way to the piece of cheese at the end.

And here’s my response:

Joel, the way you describe Alan Moore’s work there makes it sound hugely unappealing. I don’t think your account of how his art works is fundamentally untrue, mind, but it makes his work sound awful, tyrannical even – “Imagine being held in the iron grip of The World’s Mightiest Beard… FOREVER!”


And yet… the sense of total control is undeniably part of Moore’s appeal, always has been. It’s there in the famous grids of repeating imagery in Watchmen, in From Hell’s attempts to draw together an occult history of murder, in Promethea’s attempt to overlay scientific theories on Judeo-Christian creation myths. It’s even in the carefully synthesised pulp that fuels relatively Thrill Powered works like V for Vendetta and Halo Jones and (why not?!) Crossed 100
It’s also the aspect that can curdle his attempts at humour, the thing that sometimes makes his self-consciously light and playful comics feel like anything but, the… oh shit, is this why he always crams those bloody songs into his comics? Is it the final test of his mastery, the compunction to try and make you hear music in a comic? Will he manage it one day?

Maybe. Or maybe he just read too much Pynchon and smoked a little too much Tolkien before going to bed last night.

“Modern life is rubbish, here’s an 8,000 page novel about my garden.”


July 6th, 2015



Doug stepped out into the sunlight, blinking. His dressing gown lolled open, exposing his paunch. Tina’s vest top, pulled on accidentally in his rush to get outside barely covered it and the thick black hair on his belly poked out obscenely. In one hand he held a spatula; the other reached reflexively into the dressing gown pocket for the lighter he knew wasn’t there. Last night’s beer emanated from his stale mouth and he rubbed his tongue across his teeth. He wanted to belch but found he couldn’t. Taking his eyes from the sky for a moment he glanced to his left. Kathy was stood on her front lawn, gazing upward with her mouth hanging slackly open. Her two year old hung at her legs, pulling on her arm sleeve whining in a low, insistent tone. Across the road the Petersons crowded around their camper van, all staring up.

The vast alien structure that hovered high above them was still humming it’s deep bass tone and rotating slowly. The bone like growths that sprouted from it creaked as they slowly undulated. The noise was awful, too much, too loud for Sunday morning. Doug couldn’t take his eyes from it, but his brain had already started to hanker for a Bloody Mary. Just as he was trying to remember if the tomato juice was still okay to drink, a jagged split opened up in the base of the structure. And that’s when it really began.

<ITEM> There’s a fresh crop of admin, waiting to be picked, with nosey bouquets of Sponsorship and more Christopher Walken than you can shake a (Walken) stick at. It’s time for a new SILENCE! the only podcast that predates the discovery of the moon. Seasoned pod jockeys The Beast Must Die and gary Lactus are joined by new season recruit Bobsy, and the fun flows like lava,

<ITEM> Grab your loved ones, batten down the hatches and hope for the best…here comes the Reviewniverse! And it’s a humdinger, packed full of nutritious good stuff, such as Martian Manhunter, Dr Fate, Black Canary, Robin: Son of Batman, we Are Robin, Doomed, JLA, Batgirl, Alan Moore, Berlin, Adventures of Tad Martin, The Amateurs, Airboy, 8House: Arclight, Zero, Annihilator, 18 Days, Kaptara, Crossed: Badlands, The Spire, Mythic, Fantasy Sports, Fury, World War Z, Channing Tatum, Tom Hardy, Lost Property, Material, Surface, Wicked & Divine and somehow even more…
<ITEM> Bobsy sings!

Click to download SILENCE!#148

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This edition of SILENCE! is proudly sponsored by the greatest comics shop on the planet, DAVE’S COMICS of Brighton. It’s also sponsored the greatest comics shop on the planet GOSH! Comics of London.