Alan Moore, writer of Watchmen, genius. He is one of the first writers to establish a literary and structural tone to comic books that rivals traditional novels. It’s no secret that Alan Moore is not a fan of the care-free licensing that major comic book companies (Like DC) take with writers’ characters. He has always decided to take his name off writing credits when a movie is made based on one of his many genius comic stories. With the disaster that was The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen movie, Alan Moore became more frustrated with the whole licensing process.
Because of this, I don’t think he gets out in public that much. Actually, for many years I just knew him as that dude with the beard…
Yup, thas him! That’s all I knew of him. He never really seemed human, like if I ever met the dude I would cower in his presence. I never really heard him speak or got a sense of his personality until this fateful Set the VCR Moment: (there’s the jump!)
The Simpsons have been around for some 20+ years. Many folks already know about Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, Maggie and the rest. One of the more memorable settings is the Android ‘s Dungeon & Baseball Card Shop run by the guy known only as “Comic Book Guy.”
Coolsville is a new comic book shop right across the street from “Comic Book Guy’s” Android ‘s Dungeon & Baseball Card Shop. The owner of Coolsville is laid back, has everything, and all in all is a cool guy (and geek!) named Milo (voiced by Jack Black). Instead of stopping at the usual Android’s, Bart & Lisa along with many of the other Springfield children head into Coolsville for the grand opening. Part of the festivities is a song and dance by Milo, and a panel of comic book legends with Dan Clowes (Ghost World, Art School Confidential), Art Spiegelman (Maus), and the legendary Alan Moore (Watchmen, V for Vendetta, From Hell, etc…). Milhouse innocently waits in line for Alan Moore’s signature. When Milhouse gets up to speak with Alan Moore is when you should Set the VCR…
Set the VCR
Milhouse innocently goes up to Alan Moore to get him to sign a copy of the classic Watchmen Babies: V for Vacation, and Milhouse asks Alan Moore what his favorite Watchmen baby is…
Then Alan Moore speaks!
“You see what those bloody corporations do? They take your ideas and they suck them! Suck them like leeches until they’ve gotten every last drop of marrow from your bones! “
Soon after that Comic Book Guy storms into Coolsville and starts trashing the place. Dan Clowes, Art Spiegelman, and Alan Moore then turn into superheroes!
Watch a bootleg clip of the episode here (I apologize, its a really bad bootleg):
Even though the later seasons and episodes of The Simpsons didn’t have the same gusto and emotion that older Simpsons episodes had. This moment had me rolling! Who knew Alan Moore would guest star on The Simpsons, and do the whole superhero bit to boot? After this moment, Alan Moore became more than just that genius dude with a beard who wrote Watchmen. He seemed more personable, more human. If I ever meet him (I hope to one day), I know I can talk to this dude. That’s the impact.
PS: I heard he shaved off the beard…