Within comics studies, V for Vendetta can be understood as 'an unconventional approach to the costumed superhero comic', both in formal and conceptual terms. It dissolves the strict dichotomy of hero and villain which became a trademark of Alan Moore's work in the 1980s. In 'Behind the Painted Smile', Moore explicitly names the Batman comics as the most relevant intertexts within the medium itself, a title in which hero and villains are uncannily alike. It is precisely this proximity to superhero comics that offers an ideal entrance point for a discussion of Gothic concerns in V for Vendetta. In its treatment of total institutions, V for Vendetta is conceptually indebted to early Gothic fiction, such as Charles Maturin's Melmoth the Wanderer. V for Vendetta is as successful in activating the readers' active participation in negotiating the questions described in this chapter as the classics of Gothic fiction.
This book explores a number of Alan Moore's works in various forms, including comics, performance, short prose and the novel, and presents a scholarly study of these texts. It offers additional readings to argue for a politically charged sense of Moore's position within the Gothic tradition, investigates surreal Englishness in The Bojeffries Saga, and discusses the doppelganger in Swamp Thing and From Hell. Radical environmental activism can be conceived as a Gothic politics invoking the malevolent spectre of a cataclysmic eco-apocalypse. The book presents Christian W. Schneider's treatment of the apocalyptic in Watchmen and a reassessment of the significance of liminality from the Gothic tradition in V for Vendetta. It explores the relationship between Moore's work and broader textual traditions, placing particular emphasis on the political and cultural significance of intertextual relationships and adaptations. A historically sensitive reading of From Hell connects Moore's concern with the urban environment to his engagement with a range of historical discourses. The book elucidates Moore's treatment of the superhero in relation to key Gothic novels such as The Castle of Otranto and presents an analysis of the nexus of group politics and survival in Watchmen. The book also engages in Moore's theories of art, magic, resurrections, and spirits in its discourse A Small Killing, A Disease of Language, and the Voice of the Fire. It also explores the insight that his adaptations of H.P. Lovecraft, which are laced with heterocosms and bricolage, can yield for broader understandings of his forays into the occult.
tradition of Gothic liminality that includes works by William Godwin, Ann Radcliffe and Mary Shelley. In Chapter 10 , Claire Sheridan makes a compelling case that Watchmen also partakes of this literary inheritance, noting that although Moore and Godwin are both committed to anarchist politics, each remains acutely aware that it is only by the social dimension of existence that humans can overcome the
landscapes of ghost estates use the idiom of classical painting to evoke a sense of timelessness; the buildings assume the gravitas of a Poussin temple; the photographs are irradiated with the serene, purifying light of a Claude Lorraine. The light also represents a gothic, liminal space – the threshold time between dusk and dawn. Haughey describes the thinking behind his process in a