Thursday, October 19, 2023

Some folk wish we were all back in 1963

I wasn't worried that we never got to see the end of the 1963 comic by Alan Moore and a dizzily brilliant array of artists. Even with that pedigree, it was just another Image comic in the 90s. I didn't think anybody was too upset. 

But I guess Don Simpson was, and while I really don't know what to make of Simpson's new comic, it's weirdly touching that somebody out there cares that much.

I always liked Simpson's very exact kind of comics well enough, I've had one weird issue of Megaton Man in my collection for years. And while I was never really compelled to track down the rest, I still have that one issue that I held onto. (I dunno, I think it was the guy made of yarn that put me off. He always looked so sweaty and gross). 

So the first Simpson comic I read in years was X-Amount of Comics: 1963 (WhenElse?!) Annual - a weird and happily unauthorized sequel to the earlier comic, and I really don't know how to feel about it.

I mean, I'm obviously on Team Moore, and more like the mindless zombies who like his work than the other analogues Simpson piles into the comic, and I do think that Simpson's continued digs at Moore only being in it for the money feel strange when the British writer is the only goddamn comic creator I know of who has rejected money in movie and royalties.

(Jesus Christ, I read the last issue of the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen again the other day, and the line from the young Nemo about what to do when you find yourself surrounded by a tempest, and how it's so much easier if you don't do it alone - that still gets me on the deepest level.)

But for all that, Simpson's new comic is a lot of fun. Hell, Moore isn't even the main villain in Simpson's eyes, with others, including Jim Lee, getting more of a spray in the back pages.

And one thing I do take away from the book is that Simpson is a very enthusiastic artist, who has happily followed his whims, and he was really into 1963, and wanted more. And assumes that there are legions of readers who feel the same.

But I lived through those days, man. There wasn't a huge cry of anguish when 1963 never finished. Who gives a shit about that, when we had Big Numbers to worry about? Fucking hell, which Image series did actually finish at the time?

1963 was always a curio, and the unfinished and open-ended manner it was let in could be part of the charm. But I sill appreciate how much Simpson cares about it, even if nobody else seems to.

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