Santa Cruz Good Times

Sunday
Feb 14th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Miracles and Marvels

Of all the announcements made at last months's Comic-Con in San Diego, perhaps nothing shocked the show floor harder than when Marvel blew the roof off of the convention center and revealed their complete acquisition to the full publishing rights of Marvelman. A character whose legal history rivals blog-xraymiraclethe most intense dramatics on display in even the most well written comics. To anyone unfamiliar, this may seem like a head scratcher. Just who is this "Marvelman" and why should I care? Well, I can answer that question with a name: Alan Moore.

Years before Moore made the jump across the pond to American comics and began his complete alteration of the comic book landscape with his work on titles like Swamp Thing and a little known 12 issue series called Watchmen, there was a British magazine called Warrior .  An anthology comic publication comprised of several serialized strips where the bearded one began to cut his teeth at redefining what the medium was capable of. Marvelman was one of the main features of the book which also included V for Vendetta. While the character himself dates back to the fifties as essentially a rip off of Captain Marvel, family and all (A secret word turns an ordinary person into a super hero with powers beyond those of mortal men, blah, blah, blah), it wouldn't be until Moore wrapped his hands around the title before the book would truly take flight and become something incredibly unique and beyond compelling.

Warrior eventually went under and the rights to Marvelman were picked up by Eclipse comics (switching the name to Miracleman to avoid any entanglements with the house of ideas) who collected the initial strips into a more "proper" comic book format while allowing Moore to finish his story with the help of a laundry list of high profile artistic collaborators including Rick Veitch, Alan Davis, and John Totleben. After finishing 16 issues of completely deconstructing the basic concept of a super-hero, the writing reigns were handed over to some guy named Neil Gaiman who penned several issues before the book fell casualty to Eclipse going under.

In the wake of bankruptcy, famous comic artist Todd Mcfarlane stepped in and snatched up Eclipse's publishing rights to the character with the intent of introducing Miracleman into the Image universe - even going so far as to actually have Mike Moran (MM's alter-ego) make an appearance in Hellspawn as well as releasing a limited edition statue and an action figure (now bearing a re-designed costume). This despite the fact that Gaiman along with several others were still co-owners of the rights to the character. The resulting legal battle would continue for years with seemingly no end in sight. All of which makes Marvel's announcement even more impressive and shocking.

Finally, after nearly 30 years, this book will be reprinted allowing all of those readers who have been left out this entire time to decide for themselves whether or not the book is actually worth the fuss.

Having spent a lot of time (and money) to get my hands on the Eclipse issues years ago, I can say with complete confidence that anyone interested is in for a serious treat. While overall it may lack the polish and fully realized structure of his later works, Alan Moore's run on Miracle/Marvelman is, in my opinion, his most passionate, dark and dangerous work to date- and is not only my favorite, but arguably
the best comic book ever written.
Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Heart Me Up

In defense of Valentine’s Day

 

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

Wednesday (Feb. 10) is Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Friday (Feb. 12) is Lincoln’s 207th birthday. Sunday is Valentine’s Day. On Ash Wednesday, with foreheads marked with a cross of ashes, we hear the words, “From dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return.” Reminding us that our bodies, made of matter, will remain here on Earth when we are called back. It is our Soul that will take us home again. Lent offers us 40 days and nights of purification in preparation for the Resurrection (Easter) festival (an initiation) and for the Three Spring Festivals (at the time of the full moon)—Aries, Taurus, Gemini. The New Group of World Servers have been preparing since Winter Solstice. The number 40 is significant. The Christ (Pisces World Teacher) was in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights prior to His three-year ministry. The purpose of this desert exile was to prepare his Archangel (light) body to withstand the pressures of the Earth plane (form and matter). We, too, in our intentional purifications and prayers during the 40 days of Lent, prepare ourselves (physical body, emotions, lower mind) to receive and be able to withstand the irradiation of will, love/wisdom and light streaming into the Earth at spring equinox, Easter, and the Three Spiritual Festivals. What is Lent? The Anglo-Saxon word, lencten, comes from an ancient spring festival, agricultural rites marking the transition between winter and summer. The seasons reflect changes in nature (physical world) and humanity responds with social festivals of gratitude and of renewal. There is a purification process, prayerfulness in nature and in humanity in preparation for a great flow of spiritual energies during springtime. Valentine’s Day: Aquarius Sun, Taurus moon. Let us offer gifts of comfort, ease, harmony, beauty and satisfaction. Things chocolate and golden. Venus and Taurus things.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of February 12

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Pub Watch

Mega gastro pub-in-progress at the Old Sash Mill, plus the best pasta dish downtown

 

How do you know love is real?

When you feel the groove in your heart and you’re inspired to dance. Becca Bing, Boulder Creek, Teacher

 

Temple of Umami

Watsonville’s Miyuki is homestyle cooking, Japanese-style

 

How would you stop people from littering?

Teach them from the time that they’re small that it’s not an appropriate behavior. Juliet Jones, Santa Cruz, Claims Adjuster