[identity profile] arbre_rieur.insanejournal.com posting in [community profile] scans_daily
The 90s has a rep as a bad time for mainstream comics, and rightfully so. It was some terrible black hole of awfulness, sucking even normally decent writers into its depths. It was almost as if anything produced in the 90s (yeah, yeah, there were a couple of exceptions) would automatically suck, simply because it was 90s, and if a comic was made in the 90s, it was going to be terrible. Because it was the 90s.

Even Alan Moore managed to be complete crap in the 90s (though he recovered towards the tail end of that decade). Some of his work during this period is really appallingly bad. As evidence, I present to you the two-lane pile-up in mini-series form that is Spawn: Blood Feud.



So, something is going around viciously slaughtering people in New York. Meanwhile, Spawn is having strange dreams.





Sadly, half of the series is sequences like the above: page after page of hilariously purple prose about how much Spawn's costume loves to hunt and kill. Gah. Actually, it's probably less than half, but it feels like that much, what with how tedious it is.

Spawn is feeling frustrated about how he has absolutely no idea what his costume really is.



Meanwhile, the police hire a specialist to deal with the murders. This guy's a Moore creation, a celebrity paranormal investigator, yet he somehow still manages to be utterly uninteresting as a character.





Some of what the warning flyers say, per a later page: "Advise citizens to stay indoors after sunset... warn that although folk talismans such as crucifixes or garlic may prove effective, they are not to be relied upon..."

The thing killing people is off killing people again. For these sequences, Moore's been pulling an old trick from his playbook and showing it all from the killer's perspective.



Spawn awakens from another of his costume dreams to discover...



The first issue also contains a curiosity in the form of thumbnail sketches that Moore that submitted with his script.





Do you guys want to see pages from the remaining issues of this mini-series, or are you wailing, "No! No more!" Please let me know. If it's the former, I'll post more, but if it's the latter, I'll just skip straight ahead to the project where Moore reached the nightmarish peak of his early-to-mid-90s awfulness: the Spawn/WildC.A.T.s mini.

Date: 2009-07-31 07:46 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlroberson.insanejournal.com
Yes, he hacked for Image about that time and most of it was pretty horrible.

But FROM HELL, which he was trying to keep alive in the wake of Kitchen Sink's and Tundra's collapse, not to mention the collapse of his marriage and of Mad Love, was worth it.

Date: 2009-07-31 08:51 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tahngarth.insanejournal.com
Well, it all led to Supreme and then the ABC line, so a few speedbumps are okey. :)

Date: 2009-07-31 08:58 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] statham1986.insanejournal.com
Every writer's got at least a couple of stinkers in their closet, it's just that Moore's got proportionately less stinkers than most. He still did some great stuff in the 90's, like Wildcats, Supreme, From Hell, stuff like that, and he could've actually made something out of Rob Liefeld's garbage, if the idiotic one hadn't been so resistant to the idea of, y'know, paying his writers.

Date: 2009-07-31 11:34 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] wizardru.insanejournal.com
You know, I'm no big fan of a LOT of comics of the 1990s, but painting with this broad of a brush seems to missing a LOT of good comics.

Here's a sample of comics from the 1990s:

Kurt Busiek's Astro City
America's Best Comics (including Tom Strong,
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen
Mark Waid's initial run on The Flash
Kingdom Come
Marvels
Warren Ellis' run on Excalibur
Transmetropolitan
Planetary
The Authority
Preacher
Bone
Sin City
Death: the High Cost of Living
The Invisibles
MOST of Gaiman's Sandman
100 Bullets
Hellboy
Sandman Mystery Theater
Death of Superman/Funeral for a Friend/Reign of the Supermen
Peter David's runs on Hulk, Supergirl, Young Justice
Thunderbolts
The ENTIRE Milestone comics line


I mean, seriously dude...there were good comics from every publisher and in every line. Just because image put out some crap and the X-titles went south for a while along with some other big names doesn't mean that the entire decade was a lost cause.

Date: 2009-07-31 12:41 pm (UTC)
kingrockwell: he's a sexy (Snarky Vic)
From: [personal profile] kingrockwell
Well sure it sucks, it's Spawn! What did you expect?

Date: 2009-07-31 01:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] volksjager.insanejournal.com
Totally agree with you about the 90's. Industry wide there was just so much crap about. Bad themes embraced in marketing , products and writting.

Date: 2009-07-31 04:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] halloweenjack.insanejournal.com
Moore had a bad run of luck in the late eighties/early nineties, mostly due to the collapse both of Tundra Publishing (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tundra_Publishing), which was handling most of his independent work at the time, and his marriage. I see this sort of thing both as a purely-to-pay-the-bills sort of thing, and also more impetus to do stuff like 1963, his retro run on Supreme, and eventually America's Best Comics.

Date: 2009-07-31 08:23 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] geoffsebesta.insanejournal.com
I think a much better comic could have been made from these thumbnails.

Date: 2009-07-31 08:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] buttler.insanejournal.com
In Moore's defense, no good could possibly come of Spawn.

Date: 2009-07-31 10:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] his_spiffyness.insanejournal.com
What does it say when Allan can do more with Rob Liefeld than he can with Todd McFarlane?

Ew, the layout.

Date: 2009-07-31 11:09 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] nefrekeptah.insanejournal.com
The one that stands out to me most here is the scene where the killer, well, kills; there is absolutely no way to make heads or tails of that scene! I had to look at Moore's thumbnails before I could figure out that it was supposed to be breaking into an elevator, and what the hell is with the BUMBUM things on the side of the panels? Is that supposed to be a heartbeat? Who's heartbeat? And what's it even doing there? A heartbeat in the soundtrack is a good idea to ramp up tension in a movie, but comics don't have soundtracks, so all it's doing is shrinking the already muddled panels, not to mention taking away from the atmosphere by looking pretty effing stupid.

Also, on a tangent subject, why in the hell is Yost so hellbent on bringing back the 90's X-men in X-Force? I thought most sane X-fans do their hardest to forget that time period, not relive it!

Date: 2009-08-01 08:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] psychop_rex.insanejournal.com
Well, nobody's perfect. Personally, I don't actually think this is all THAT bad; it's certainly not great, but it's adequate. (Anyway, Spawn is not exactly a literate character; methinks he's dragging Moore down.) And if you ask me, I'd say the real problem-era for comics was the mid-to-late '80's grim-'n-gritty era, the era of big guns, fierce scowls, a high body count, and Rob Liefeld.

Date: 2009-08-02 02:54 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] thebat_man.insanejournal.com
Pages from remaining issues and the Spawn/WildC.A.T.s mini? Why not, would be good for a laugh and end some of the repulsive Alan Moore worship. Roll the ugliness.

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