Graphic Novel/Comics Review

DC Universe: The Stories of Alan Moore

(2006) Alan Moore, Titan Books, 12.99, trdpbk, 304pp, ISBN 1-845-76257-6


Back around 1988 DC published a black and white trade paperback of Alan Moore's Superman stories titled The Man of Tomorrow. This contained "The Jungle Line" from DC Presents 85, "For the Man Who Has Everything from Superman annual 11 (recently adapted for the cartoon series Justice League Unlimited), and "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow" from Superman 423/Action Comics 583, the swan song of the 'old' Superman, then about to be revamped by John Byrne. Fifteen years later (!) in 2003 DC published Across the Universe: The DC Universe Stories of Alan Moore in colour, but on crap paper and without including "Whatever Happened..." and, notably, the Batman one-shot title The Killing Joke. Now we have this book, colour, good paper, where applicable the covers of the issues, and 'missing' stories added back in. Very reasonably priced for the page-count too! ((Just to prove that I don't just bitch when the comics are overpriced...)) I shouldn't, by now, have to tell anyone just how brilliant Alan Moore is, nor how significant he has been in utterly transforming the comics medium over the last 20-25 years. Like Jonathan Ross in the recent Culture Show mini-interview with Alan, I sometimes think that if you don't already worship Alan's work, then you just don't deserve to have him! But, given I'm in one of my less selfish moods, I'll happily recommend this wonderful volume collecting Alan's non-Swamp Thing work for DC. Needless to say, there are a plethora of talented artists' work to enjoy also, including Jim Aparo, Al Williamson, Jim Baikie, Rick Veitch, Brian Bolland, Curt Swan, Dave Gibbons, George Perez, Klaus Janson and Kevin O'Neill, to name but a few. The intro to this book is the same intro used in the 2003 volume by Dave Gibbons and there's a new cover by Brian Bolland. Enjoy.

Tony Chester

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