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The Ballad of Halo Jones Paperback – August 1, 2005
Deluxe graphic novels
Premium editions of classic titles including "Preacher," "The Sandman," and more. Learn more
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Top Customer Reviews
Overall, Ballad isn't quite Moore at his best (Watchmen and From Hell), but it's ranks with his "2nd tier" work like Miracleman; and it's head and shoulders over more recent fare like League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. One negative: this trade from Titan reprints the full storyline in the original black and white, and format-size, which is much larger than the standard comic book format. During the late 1980s in the US, this series was reprinted in color and in standard size. I wish that this format had been retained...frankly, this is a big book on the bookshelf.
Such things happen in this story to young Halo, who trades in the futilities and disappointments of her childhood Welfare State environment for adventure in outer space -- which of course proves to have futilities and disappointments of its own.
The last third of the novel deals with Halo's experiences in the military --like Heinlein's STARSHIP TROOPERS or SPACE CADET -- although Alan Moore's take on space combat is decidedly less gung-ho than Heinlein's. Closer to Joe Haldeman's THE FOREVER WAR.
It's impressive to read how these seemingly disparate installments appearing in various 2000AD progs are feathered together to form this bittersweet ballad. Indeed, as this collection is universally hailed as classic space opera, the slow momentum from which it begins seems anything but. It starts with an all too common motif, the boredom and need for wanderlust in and for a distant future when even space itself has not only been conquered but hotly contested. Swiftly though, it changes to something more complicated, as life is wont.
Refreshingly, this is not a superhero story. It's hard science fiction, cosmically emblazoned within the sharpened panels characteristic of 2000AD's art and galaxy building. It's not necessarily speculative on our future (other than our cetacean friends reclaiming Earth upon our folly) but on the human condition, that specifically after another few millennia or so, human nature (the best and worst, of course), still won't change much. Written with subtle strength from the female vantage, as so many top sci-fi stories have been, Halo Jones is ultimately and believably not super, but heroic nevertheless.
But with all Moore's clever plotting and the roguish, keen sketching from Ian Gibson, this is the story of no one, or perhaps anyone who at the seductive scent of adventure, is brave enough to claim their own future, accepting the good and not-so-good outcomes with each step.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A great book. I've read them all individually, but now I have them all in one.Published 17 months ago by Jared Prothro
Very interesting and even funny at times. I was totally into it. If you're a Alan Moore you must give this a try. If you're not an Alan Moore yet, here's your chance.Published 17 months ago by Timothy Elliott
Moore is one of the Big Names in graphic novels -- and deserves to be -- and this is one of his best works. It's not only a "ballad," it's practically a saga. Read morePublished 18 months ago by Michael K. Smith
amazing. really. this is one of the best science fiction graphic novels a person can put their money into. Read morePublished 19 months ago by lundy
Alan Moore may have struggled to fit a 'girl's story' into a teenage boy's sci-fi comic (2000ad) - but his mastery of story-telling is apparent throughout this collected trilogy. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Tim Donderevo
Alan Moore's early slow mo take on future war is irresistible - one of his most charming creations. Bookend it with Top Ten.Published on November 29, 2013 by Simon Reeve
For the time it was written the story was groundbreaking for comics. The art is great and you're left wanting further adventures.Published on October 18, 2013 by Andrew J. Bator
I'm half way through this book, it's nothing but girls going shopping. I thought she was going off to space, it is taking way too long for the plot to get interesting. Read morePublished on January 21, 2013 by Justica
Although the fashion in this future story screams 1980's, the topics of wealth, poverty, world power and war are nearly always current. Read morePublished on February 1, 2012 by Amazon Customer