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DC Universe: The Stories of Alan Moore Paperback – January 4, 2006

4.2 out of 5 stars 41 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

While Moore was evolving the superhero story with his work on Swamp Thing and Watchmen in the '80s he was also taking smaller freelance assignments for DC Comics. The works in DC's newly assembled collection of these stories (all previously available in various collections and put together for the first time here) don't possess the same momentousness as those titles but still provide an interesting side of Moore's oeuvre. Many of the stories are superheroes tales told with such wit and imagination that they reach all the promise the genre offers. The best is "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?," a heartfelt sendoff to the Silver Age–era of Superman comics rendered by the greatest Superman artist, Curt Swan. Many of the shorter pieces feature Moore's knack for coming up with science fiction twist endings that always amuse. The Green Lantern back-up "Mogo Doesn't Socialize" is as inventive as it is brief. Other stories feel like a dated part of the grim 1980s."The Killing Joke," featuring Batman and stunning art by Brian Bolland, and a Vigilante story are both dark and serious tales but they lack both Moore's virtuoso storytelling tricks and the complexity and humanity of his best work. (Jan.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

After setting the superhero genre on its ear by overhauling Swamp Thing and before (temporarily) departing mainstream comics for such projects as From Hell (2000), Moore frolicked in DC's playground by penning occasional stories about the company's biggest stars and a few, neglected second-stringers. His artistic collaborators on those pieces were no slouches, either, particularly fellow Brits Dave Gibbons (Moore's collaborator on the acclaimed Watchmen) and Brian Bolland. Most of these tales have been collected before (see Across the Universe, 2003), but this book includes two stories that had previously been published in discrete volumes: "The Killing Joke," a genuinely chilling portrayal of Batman's greatest foe, the Joker, as a dangerous madman rather than a nettlesome clown, and "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow," a heartfelt last look at some three decades' worth of Superman villains, supporting characters, and outmoded detritus (e.g., Krypto the Superdog) before the character received a sweeping, mideighties revamping. Combining these landmark tales with Moore's 13 other DC Universe stories makes this book a no-brainer addition to graphic-novel collections. Gordon Flagg
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: DC Comics (January 11, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401209270
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401209278
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 0.4 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #53,488 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Tim Janson HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 26, 2006
Format: Paperback
Over the past 20 years Alan Moore has become one of the most celebrated and enigmatic writers in the comic book industry. He has written such books as the critically acclaimed "Watchmen", "V for Vendetta", as well as reviving the failing "Swamp Thing" series, all for DC Comics. In addition to these runs, Moore wrote a number of "guest stories" for various DC characters in the mid-1980's and that is the subject of this new trade paperback. The book doesn't represent Moore's best comic writing and unfortunately none of the great stories he did for Swamp Thing are included in the book. Rather, these are a series of stories written for 16 issues of various titles between 1985 and 1988. They are all super hero tales and thus Moore did not have the kind of free reign that he did (mostly) on Swamp Thing but you can still get a great sense of his talent, even in stories for mundane and relatively forgotten characters like the Omega Men and The Vigilante.

In Superman Annual #11, Superman has been attacked in his fortress of solitude by Mongul who has attached a strange symbiotic life form to Superman's chest. He stands unmoving as Batman, Robin, and Wonder Woman arrive to see him. The creature puts Superman into a world where his greatest heart's wishes come true...he is back on Krypton which was not destroyed and has his own family including a son...a son who he has to painfully tell good bye to in order to fight off the effects of the creature.

DC Comics Presents #85 has a similar story. This time Superman has been infected by a Krptonian fungus that is causing him to experience fever, loss of powers, and delusions. After studying the fungus for twenty minutes, his microscopic vision gets out and he heads south...by car...
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Format: Paperback
I'll review each individual story. Expect gushing praise

1) For the Man who has Everything-This classic story is normally remembered for its framing sequence, in which Batman Wonder Woman, and Robin II Jason Todd show up at the Fortress of Solitude to visit Superman for his Birthday, but are attacked By the villain Mongul, who has incapacitated Superman with the Black Mercy plant. The internal story of a possible Krypton that has fallen from glory is often forgotten, but no less interesting. 5 out of 5.
2) Night Olympics. This Green Arrow story is short, interesting but lacks substance, and uses Black Canary as a plot device to motivate Green Arrow instead of being treated like the badass metahuman she is 3 stars.
3)Mogo Doesn't Socialize. Written with almost Silver Age glee, this fun story has some cheesy dialogue but is intensely fun 5 stars
4)Father's Day This Vigilante story is good but controversial and a little inconsistent. The sudden shift between parts one and two in the characterization of the abusive father and his daughter's attitude towards him is jarring, and can take you out of the story. 4 stars
5)Brief Lives- a strange and surreal little tale in the outskirts of the DC universe, in which a group of megalomaniacal spiders attempt to inform a pair of blue giants that they have been conquered. Shades of Dr. Manhattan in the giants? 5 out of 5
6)A Man's World. The goofy tone does not suit the strange story twist. This tale should be utterly horrifying, but it fails to hammer in that horror properly. Creepy and borderline Misogynistic 1 star
7)The Jungle Line A crossover of Moore's take on Swamp Thing with Superman. Covers familiar ground with Supes but really gets across Swamp Thing's inner good will and kindness well.
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Format: Paperback
These stories are simply the best. Unlike the new hardcover which leaves out a lot of Moore's most famous stories (but does include a lot of the Wildstorm stuff, where this collection does not). Also, there's another version of this collection in softcover that has Alan's face and image on it. But that one leaves out a couple key things including the amazing intro to "Whatever Happened To The Man Of Tomorrow". All that said, this is the collection to have. It includes the original coloring for Killing Joke as well. One of my favorite stories in the collection is a Batman story called MORTAL CLAY which was drawn by George Freeman and is worth every penny of the collection. Not only is it mind-blowingly clever, but it even reveals that which is so often ignored in Batman's character -- his compassion.
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Format: Paperback
It hasn't received much publicity, but DC screwed up big time with this TPB. It's a combination of the earlier Accross the niverse TPB with the PF format "What Ever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?" collection and the Killing Joke one shot. well, when DC put this together someone forgot to restore the famous opening paragraph of WHttMoT which for the original collection was placed on the back in leiu of an original text piece.

Now normally this might not be that big a deal, but that paragraph is famous and a powerful piece of writing. It might be corrected in future collections, but for now I'd recommend picking of the original Accross the Universe TPB instead and the seperate releases of WHttMoT and Killing Joke.
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