The League of Extraordinary Gentleman COMIC BOOK review [Alan Moore]

Book Reviews
The League of Extraordinary Gentleman COMIC BOOK review [Alan Moore]
Dec 15, 2000, 04:47

THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN by Alan Moore, Kevin O'Neill, Ben Dimagmaliw and Bill Oakley;  America's Best Comics, 2000

What a complete gas. Most anyone familiar with comics ought to know about Alan Moore by now, so I'll skip the introduction. What I really like about this hardbound collection of comic books is the way Moore and penciller O'Neill have created a completely convincing, detailed rendition of a souped-up Victorian England. The basic plot of this series is that British military intelligence has recruited Captain Nemo, The Invisible Man, Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde, and Allan Quartermain as an ad hoc unit to foil various plans against The Interests of the Empire. Moore has obviously spent time over dime novels, newspaper broadsheets, and Victorian novels (at one point here there's a reference to Prime Minister Plantaganet Palliser for gosh sake) to get the feel of the times and the rhetoric. Every nineteenth century science fiction gambit is employed (balloons float over Paris by the dozens) and every Kipling-esque bit of racism is well placed (the Empire is threatened by “Johnny Chinaman” and an American schoolgirl has the independence flogged out of her). It's the best a comic book can aspire to, a world with internal consistency and a feel of its own. I look forward to further chapters.

-Bruce Adams

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