alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher posting in [community profile] scans_daily



Although we've all been having fun posting lower-profile Alan Moore comics, we mustn't neglect the lesser-known work of other great comic book writers. Thus: Neil Gaiman's first published work in comics, from 2000 AD.


Shortly after befriending Moore in 1985 and learning how he wrote his comics for others to illustrate, Gaiman tried his hand at his own script. Titled "The Day My Pad Went Mad," it saw John Constantine returning home after the events of Swamp Thing's "American Gothic" (which was still running at the time) and dealing with the horrors that had sprouted in his fridge. Moore liked it, though he felt the ending was "a bit wonky." He did however insert an inside joke for Gaiman within Swamp Thing #51, in which John tells Alec that when he returns to London he'll face disconnected utilities and "something nasty evolving in the fridge."

"The Day My Pad Went Pad" remains unillustrated and unpublished to this day (though his second try at a script, "Jack in the Green," would eventually see print in 1999), but from 1986 to 1987 Gaiman did see four of his "Future Shocks" tales published in 2000 AD. (I've managed to track down three of them.) Together with his first graphic novella, Violent Cases, they paved the way for better-paying and higher-profile DC work.

In "You're Never Alone with a Phone!" (Prog 488, 20 Sept. 1986, art by John Hicklenton, 1.5 of 4.5 pages), a distant-future instructor lectures on the history of communications, from stone drums to smoke signals to letters to phones. Although simple at first, phones gradually saw additional features added, such as video and... this:







Eventually, "every phone on the planet" was outfitted with an intelligence circuit. This created a problem.





Then people got their phone bills and had a fit.





Telecorp International executives saw there was only one thing to do. In tears, they cut off the phone lines. Even when the lines came back on, the public had decided it would never be beholden to the telephone again. Which is just as well, concludes the instructor. "For after all, have we not reached the ultimate in technologically advanced message sending?"






In "I'm a Believer" (Prog 536, 22 Aug. 1987, art by Massimo Belardinelli, 2 of 6 pages), computer repair technician Harry Peterson finds himself stymied by one computer he just can't fix, even though he believes it should work. Just before falling asleep that night, he wonders whether "computers only work because we believe they do... So what happens if I begin to doubt they do?"


Harry gets his answer the next day, when he finds to his horror that every computer in the world has stopped working.





He manages to believe himself back into existence right in the path of his coworker Paul's cycle, too late for Paul to avoid hitting him. Fortunately Harry's okay, apart from having trouble remembering the last couple of days. Paul sends for an ambulance.






In "What's in a Name?" (Prog 538, 5 Sept. 1987, art by Steve Yeowell, 2 of 6 pages), Mr. Puddle, a successful author, speaks with a Professor Foggarty, who may be the only person who can help him. Puddle explains that he writes various genre and literary fiction under separate pseudonyms, whom he imagines as individual personas. The trouble is that these personas have begun to take on wills of their own and are now hijacking each other's stories, making Puddle write things he never intended. His romance heroine guns down the hero instead of reconciling with him. His SF/action characters make out with each other instead of fighting. The characters in his humour books go on serious academic tangents, while the characters in his literary novels start doing stand-up. So poor Puddle finds himself unable to complete any of his work.

Not to worry, says Foggarty, who has just the device for him.





Date: 2018-10-01 09:40 am (UTC)
tripodeca113: (Default)
From: [personal profile] tripodeca113
I guess everyone's got to start somewhere.

Date: 2018-10-01 10:39 pm (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
He started writing with a 1984 biography of "Duran Duran", the pop group, not the character from Barbarella, which he is... not especially proud of, so pretty much everything was a step up after that.

Date: 2018-10-01 11:04 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] agharta75
Hey, it's apprenticeship work. At least it got published.
From: [personal profile] lego_joker
... but is the timeline here quite correct? According to Gaiman's Twitter-thread on the importance of editors accepting unknowns, Black Orchid was the first thing of his accepted by DC, completely independent of any of his 2000AD work.

Profile

scans_daily: (Default)
Scans Daily

Extras

Founded by girl geeks and members of the slash fandom, [community profile] scans_daily strives to provide an atmosphere which is LGBTQ-friendly, anti-racist, anti-ableist, woman-friendly and otherwise discrimination and harassment free.

Bottom line: If slash, feminism or anti-oppressive practice makes you react negatively, [community profile] scans_daily is probably not for you.

Please read the community ethos and rules before posting or commenting.

April 2019

S M T W T F S
  1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 222324252627
282930    

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags