Jan 11, 2013

Retrospective: Alan Moore at Awesome

For the next five weeks, I'll be doing a five-part retrospective series on Alan Moore's time at Awesome Comics. You guys might remember that I did a similar series on America's Best Comics, Moore's imprint at Wildstorm. That entire imprint came about because at the time, Moore was working at Rob Liefeld's Awesome Comics, which was a consolidation of Liefeld's two companies, Extreme Studios (which published titles such as Youngblood, Supreme, and Glory, all part of the larger then–Image Universe) and Maximum Press (which published titles such as Avengelyne, which were thought of to stand on their own).

At Awesome, Moore was working with artists such as Chris Sprouse, Brandon Peterson, Steve Skroce, and Liefeld himself to create a whole new universe of superheroes that would play off the classic archetypes. Supreme quickly became a riff on the Silver Age version of Superman. Glory was intended to be their version of Wonder Woman. There were analogues for the Justice League and the Avengers both. It was fun to spot which characters corresponded to which archetypes, but more than that, it was fun to see Moore try his hand at it and reading the stories that came out of it.

Then Awesome lost a bunch of money and pretty much folded its comic line, leading Moore and his collaborators to Wildstorm. He'd written, at the time, 22 (or 23, depending on how you counted) issues of Supreme, two issues each of Glory and Youngblood, and the miniseries Judgment Day, intended to be their "big event" as well as the laying down of the foundation for future stories. Awesome also published Moore's proposals for Glory and Youngblood.

Unlike ABC, I discovered Moore's time at Awesome after the fact, and I'll be talking specifically about the products I own (the two Checker TPBs for Supreme, the TPB for Judgment Day, and the single issues for Glory and Youngblood). I also don't have a universal love for it, but that's part of the fun. Here's the schedule.

January 17: Supreme: The Story of the Year, Awesome's Superman and how Moore found the right riffs and tweaks to make this work.
January 24: Judgment Day, Awesome's big event and the foundation for its universe.
January 31: Glory, Awesome's Wonder Woman, and why it didn't work as well as Supreme did. I'll also be talking about Moore's proposal for the series and its connection to Promethea.
February 7: Youngblood, Awesome's young superhero team, a la Teen Titans. I'll also be talking about Moore's proposal for the series.
February 21: Supreme: The Return, the rest of the Supreme series after his history had been laid out, and how it ends with a tribute to the King.

Let me know what you think in the comments section, via email or via the Facebook page!

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