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  1. #1
    Fantastic Member Mark Trail's Avatar
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    Default Is Alan Moore a hypocrite?

    Article here, in which Moore criticizes superhero as follows: "All of these characters have been stolen from their original creators, all of them." The writer continued, "They have a long line of ghosts standing behind them. In the case of Marvel films, Jack Kirby [the Marvel artist and writer]."

    I see his point but, at the same time, Moore made his fame using the same characters, "stolen" from their creators: Swamp Thing (Wein/Wrightson), Superman (Siegle/Shuster), Batman and the Joker (Bill Finger/Jerry Robinson) and even, in the case of Etrigan, Kirby himself. Even "Watchmen" started out as a revamp of characters created by the likes Steve Ditko and others and LOEG is replete with his use of other writers' characters (everyone from Arthur Conan Doyle and Bram Stoker to Ian Fleming and J.K. Rowling).

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Extraordinary Member manwhohaseverything's Avatar
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    It depends. The character's are already corporate entities. There is nothing he can do about it other than speak about it. I do believe moore's superman works are heavily inspired by siegel's works. So,he keeps the creators in mind when he writes stuff.

  3. #3
    DARKSEID LAUGHS... Crazy Diamond's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Trail View Post
    Article here, in which Moore criticizes superhero as follows: "All of these characters have been stolen from their original creators, all of them." The writer continued, "They have a long line of ghosts standing behind them. In the case of Marvel films, Jack Kirby [the Marvel artist and writer]."

    I see his point but, at the same time, Moore made his fame using the same characters, "stolen" from their creators: Swamp Thing (Wein/Wrightson), Superman (Siegle/Shuster), Batman and the Joker (Bill Finger/Jerry Robinson) and even, in the case of Etrigan, Kirby himself. Even "Watchmen" started out as a revamp of characters created by the likes Steve Ditko and others and LOEG is replete with his use of other writers' characters (everyone from Arthur Conan Doyle and Bram Stoker to Ian Fleming and J.K. Rowling).

    Thoughts?
    Ignoring claims of morality, it was the owners of DC and Marvel who claimed ownership of the characters created over the years. In some cases, they even try to keep said creators from making money off of their own creation (ex. Ghost Rider). Then there's the stories of many comics creators who die in poverty or obscurity. So how is Alan Moore a hypocrite for pointing that out?

    If you work at a company where the owner gets the majority of the profits while the workers don't get much at all, are you just as responsible?

  4. #4
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    One of the reasons why DC is often hesitant to use Black Lighting is because they don’t want to have to pay out royalties to his creator, so he has a point.

  5. #5
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    Since I'm rather ignorant of business, maybe someone can answer me this; just how much would a company really lose if creators earned the full amount of money their creations were worth?

  6. #6
    Savior of the Universe Flash Gordon's Avatar
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    The WATCHMEN characters may have been inspired by the Charlton Comics characters but they're wholly their own characters. That narrative that Moore is a hypocrite for taking inspiration from Blue Beetle to create Nite-Owl or whatever is so tired. Everything is inspired by something else.

    As for Batman, Superman, and Swamp Thing? He did all of those a long, long time ago.

    Alan Moore did a lot for creators' rights and organizing the labour of the industry to campaign for those rights. He's always been an ally. He's also one of the greatest writers of our times.
    Last edited by Flash Gordon; 10-15-2020 at 03:08 PM.

  7. #7
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    I think that if you're a creator working with/for a publishing company, and you want to own the rights of what you create, be careful of what you sign, and don't take people at their word alone. Do that, and you should be pretty okay. If someone is in blatant breach of the contract, you should have a pretty good case against them, so you would hopefully not have too much trouble finding a lawyer to take it.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Falz View Post
    I think that if you're a creator working with/for a publishing company, and you want to own the rights of what you create, be careful of what you sign, and don't take people at their word alone. Do that, and you should be pretty okay. If someone is in blatant breach of the contract, you should have a pretty good case against them, so you would hopefully not have too much trouble finding a lawyer to take it.
    that's where I'm confused, did he and any other disgruntled creators not know what they were getting into? It is possible they were mislead. But at the same time didn't Alan Moore write some Green Lantern stuff, then get mad when other GL writers that came after him used some of his ideas in their stories? Seems hypocritical to me, not like Alan Moore created Green Lantern, why are his ideas supposed to be sacred and untouchable?

  9. #9
    Fantastic Member Hol's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Falz View Post
    I think that if you're a creator working with/for a publishing company, and you want to own the rights of what you create, be careful of what you sign, and don't take people at their word alone. Do that, and you should be pretty okay. If someone is in blatant breach of the contract, you should have a pretty good case against them, so you would hopefully not have too much trouble finding a lawyer to take it.
    Yeah I mean creators are adults and should know what they are getting into when they sign contracts. Just because a character blows up and makes DC or Marvel a ton of money doesn't mean the creators are being treated unfairly. Make a better deal. And if you do not have enough juice to make a deal you are happy with then don't sign. Publishers are taking a shot too. Not every character worked on for a publisher is a hit.

    And it is sad to see anyone (creator or not) poor. But is doesn't mean they deserve more money for a deal they agreed on.

  10. #10
    Boisterously Confused
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    Moore is one of comics greatest creative talents. He's also a cranky old coot.

    If you read his Prometha, you get a pretty clear picture of how he views reality and capitalism. It's a really good read, BTW, if a bit of a skull bender.

    I don't think him a hypocrite. True, he made his fame on others' creations, but its not like he took ownership of that IP, and has sat around harvesting the surplus from those creations. I can see where your question comes from because he altered Swamp Thing and Marvel Man almost as much as Marvel Studios has Thor or Scarlet Witch. However, I think his real beef is about IP owners hoarding the monetary benefits of the comic creations.

    I do think his position on IP ownership unrealistic. That's not to say wrong, but given how the laws of IP ownership work, he shouldn't expect otherwise. Comic companies probably deserve his windmill-tilting a bit less than the society that sets the rules of intellectual property.

  11. #11
    Astonishing Member Zelena's Avatar
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    The interview is here, though… The CBR article is mostly reported speech and a bit incomplete.

    I must admit that Moore was quite effective in showing that if super-heroes were existing in the real world, it would be quite creepy.

    Edit: When he said that “all of these characters had been stolen from their original creators, all of them”, he didn’t say he hadn’t done the same. So not a hypocrite for me.

  12. #12
    Astonishing Member Riv86672's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Trail View Post
    Article here, in which Moore criticizes superhero as follows: "All of these characters have been stolen from their original creators, all of them." The writer continued, "They have a long line of ghosts standing behind them. In the case of Marvel films, Jack Kirby [the Marvel artist and writer]."

    I see his point but, at the same time, Moore made his fame using the same characters, "stolen" from their creators: Swamp Thing (Wein/Wrightson), Superman (Siegle/Shuster), Batman and the Joker (Bill Finger/Jerry Robinson) and even, in the case of Etrigan, Kirby himself. Even "Watchmen" started out as a revamp of characters created by the likes Steve Ditko and others and LOEG is replete with his use of other writers' characters (everyone from Arthur Conan Doyle and Bram Stoker to Ian Fleming and J.K. Rowling).

    Thoughts?
    Yup, he’s a big time hypocrite.

  13. #13
    Benefactor / Malefactor H-E-D's Avatar
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    Alan Moore is not a cranky old coot, he's a disillusioned veteran of the industry.

    https://twitter.com/leahmoore/status...50019072356353

    Quote Originally Posted by Leah Moore
    The idea that the man who loved superhero stories so much he gave up his job and plunged recklessly into writing comics, which at that time was *insane* of him to do, loved them so much he filled every panel (and arguably every balloon and caption) with that love, Loved them so much he tried to make them into something that provoked thought and feelings, that addressed issues, that spoke to people the way superheroes had always spoken to him. That seems crazy to me. I have his collection of Marvel comics, dogeared from reading, from love. I heard so many times abojt his excitement at finding a stash of second hand Marvel comics in a junkshop, in a box, or buying them off the spinners in Great Yarmouth on holiday. He could not love superhero comics more if he tried. Jack Kirby was his idol, Ditko was his idol. It was that love that made him who he was! In the 80s he brought ecology and politics into his superhero comics, in the 90s he wrote 1963 which was a glowing fizzing love letter directly to his beloved superhero comics, he wrote that at the same time as From Hell, Lost Girls...

    He literally cannot hide his enthusiasm for what he loves. On holiday he makes comics with his grandkids and the fun they have choosing names and designing costumes is awesome. Hard to say who loves it more.

    I often think about how many things he clearly says with a smile that get reported in text as deadly serious.

    Best example of this is an interviewer once said "so...i hear you don't like kids...why is that?" And dad couldn't work it out, until he remembered being asked what advice he would give, and he'd said "Keep dry, and away from children". It was written on a box of matches.
    Last edited by H-E-D; 10-15-2020 at 02:40 PM.

  14. #14
    Mighty Member LordMikel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    Since I'm rather ignorant of business, maybe someone can answer me this; just how much would a company really lose if creators earned the full amount of money their creations were worth?
    So this is an example.
    https://www.celebritynetworth.com/ar...ay-off-batman/

    Basically Jack Nicholson said, "I'll be Joker, take less from for the movie roll salary, but I get a cut of all depictions of Joker memorabilia from the movie." He ends up making a lot more money because of that.

    Now personally, I think Marvel/ DC should be putting that kind of a clause into every contract they sign. "If you create a new character, and he becomes popular and we sell merchandise of him, you are going to get a cut of that revenue." Why, because you want people to create new characters. Bruce Timm and Paulk Dini create Condiment King, and McDonalds comes along and says, "Hey, we'd like to use that character for a series of commercials against Ronald McDonald, we will pay you 10 million for his use" then DC should be saying thank you, and pay them 1% of 10% or whatever and keep up the good work. Because that is revenue they never could have expected.

    But all of this creator stuff is why Image was formed. I crate it, so I get to own the rights to it.
    I think restorative nostalgia is the number one issue with comic book fans.
    A fine distinction between two types of Nostalgia:

    Reflective Nostalgia allows us to savor our memories but accepts that they are in the past
    Restorative Nostalgia pushes back against the here and now, keeping us stuck trying to relive our glory days.

  15. #15
    Benefactor / Malefactor H-E-D's Avatar
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