Moorcock's Miscellany
Go Back   Moorcock's Miscellany > THE MULTIVERSE > The Inner Landscape ◦ Articles, Interviews & Reviews

The Inner Landscape ◦ Articles, Interviews & Reviews This forum contains articles about Mike's work, Interviews with Mike and Reviews of Mike's books, comics, etc. Note: New threads are moderated and will need to be approved before they appear. If you have something you think ought to be hosted here please PM a member of the site staff.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 05-02-2008, 05:53 AM
The Cosmic Balance's Avatar
The Cosmic Balance The Cosmic Balance is offline
The Final Programme
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 3,679
Thanks: 3
Thanked 56 Times in 41 Posts
Default 'Michael Moorcock and the Comics of the Multiverse' by Rick Klaw

This article originally appeared in Michael Moorcock’s Multiverse #6, DC Comics, April 1998 and was reprinted in GEEK CONFIDENTIAL: ECHOES FROM THE 21ST CENTURY, edited by Rick Klaw, (Monkeybrain Books, 2003).

It is reprinted at Moorcock’s Miscellany by kind permission of the author.

Michael Moorcock and the Comics of the Multiverse

It was an inauspicious start for the man who would become one of the most important genre writers of the latter half of the 20th century. In1956, at the age of 16, Michael Moorcock began contributing to Tarzan Adventures, a weekly boys’ magazine containing both text and comics.

Over at Tarzan Adventures, Moorcock scripted text to Hal Foster’s Tarzan strip. The only English plates of the strip had been destroyed in the Blitz, so the magazine had to work from Spanish-language plates. The Spanish-illiterate Moorcock would whatever seemed to fit the illustrations, often including well-known sf people of the time as characters. Sometime in 1957 Moorcock took over the editorial reigns of the magazine. He remained as editor until 1958, when he was dismissed for placing too much emphasis on written fiction rather than the cheaper-to-produce black & white strips.

Moorcock then began working on a succession of comic magazines for Fleetway including Sexton Blake Library, Kit Carson, Robin Hood, and Billy The Kid, first on the annuals and then on the actual weeklies. The annuals were hardbound Christmas versions of the weeklies and monthlies.

During this period, Moorcock also edited issues of Thriller Picture Library, Cowboy Picture Library, and others. By 1965 he had written or co-written issues of Karl the Viking, Kit Carson, Buck Jones, Dogfight Dixon RFC (which he helped to create), The Life Of Alexander, Skid Solo, Zip Nolan, Highway Patrol, and Bible Story Weekly. Contrary to popular belief, Moorcock never wrote issues of Wrath of Gods, Deathworld, or The Trigon Empire. By the end of 1965 he had all but stopped writing comics…

…that is, until he wrote the Jerry Cornelius strip for International Times in 1969/70. The strips, co-written with M. John Harrison amd illustrated by Mal Dean and Richard Glyn Jones, are reprinted in The New Nature Of The Catastrophe (Millenium/ hardback and trade paper editions only. Mark Reeve cover).

The Sonic Assassins was a comic strip written by Moorcock and illustrated by Jim Cawthorn for Frendz magazine in 1971. The story featured an adventure of the band Hawkwind.

Though it’s not strictly a comic book, we should note Elric de Necromancien (1970) by Phillipe Druillet. This French artist’s portfolio is the first set of illustrations devoted to Elric. Moorcock later added text for the British edition Elric: The Return to Melniboné. (Unicorn Books 1973, reprinted Jayde Design 1997).

Moorcock (with Jim Cawthorn) plotted the infamous Elric meets Conan story for Marvel’s Conan the Barbarian #14-15 (1972). The story was scripted by Roy Thomas and drawn by Barry Windsor-Smith, and is noted for the inaccuracies in Windsor-Smith’s portrayal of Elric, for which he later apologized.

In 1973 the first Elric adaptation appeared courtesy of Steve Grant and John Adkins Richardson. This fanzine is rarely seen and has never been reprinted. Steve Grant and Bob Gould then produced the original Elric “The Prisoner of Pan Tang” for Star*Reach #6 (1976). Also in ’76, Jim Cawthorn produced the first of three Moorcock adaptations: Stormbringer, followed by The Jewel In The Skull (1979), and The Crystal & the Amulet (1986).

Moebius began his classic Airtight Garage of Jerry Cornelius in 1976. This story has nothing to do with Cornelius and was never intended to, but is rather an in-joke. Years later, when the stories were reprinted by Epic, the character’s name was changed to Lewis Carnelian.

1975 saw one of the most bizarre adaptations of a Moorcock story to date with “Behold The Man” being adapted in Marvel’s Unknown Worlds of Science Fiction #6. This version, adapted by Dough Moench and Alex Niño, brings to mind the jungles of the Philippines rather than the arid landscapes of the Middle East. To add insult to injury, the cover spotlights a crucified spaceman, complete with space suit!

Moorcock returned to original comic writing in 1979 when he supplied the plot to The Swords of Heaven, Flowers of Hell. This graphic novel, with script and art by Howard Chaykin, was a new tale of the Eternal Champion and has become a sought-after Moorcock collectible.

Starting with Frank Brunner’s wonderful adaptation of Elric of Melniboné in Heavy Metal in 1979, the next ten years saw a plethora of Michael Moorcock adaptations, most of them published by Pacific then First Comics. Artists involved with the adaptations included P. Craig Russell, Michael T. Gilbert, and Mike Mignola (some of his best earlier work). By the end of the 80’s the adaptations had all but dried up.

Saga of the Man-Elf (1989) was a strange little comic from Trident. Writer Guy Lawley and artist Steve Whitaker incorporated several of Michael Moorcock’s characters with the blessing of Moorcock himself.

For the first time since 1956 there was a five-year period of no Moorcock comics until the adaptation of the Elric short story “Jesting With Chaos” in Weird Business (Mojo Press 1995). This painted story was adapted by Franz Henkel, Shea Anton Pensa, and Ted Naifeh.

1997 saw the release of one of the most eagerly anticipated Moorcock adaptations of them all: Stormbringer. This version of the famed tale would be illustrated by P. Craig Russell, whom many consider to be the greatest Elric artist of them all.

What does the future hold for Michael Moorcock and comics? There are rumors of an adaptation of The Final Programme and Moorcock has hinted around at possibly producing some more original comics. Who knows? It’s all possible in the endless reaches of the Multiverse.

© Rick Klaw 1998
___________________________________________________________________________
The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the iniquities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of darkness, for he is truly his brother's keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. And you will know my name is The Lord when I lay my vengeance upon thee.

Last edited by The Cosmic Balance; 05-02-2008 at 05:58 AM.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to The Cosmic Balance For This Useful Post:
  #2  
Old 07-06-2008, 11:50 PM
Gilgamesh's Avatar
Gilgamesh Gilgamesh is offline
Citizen of Tanelorn
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 255
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Cosmic Balance View Post
This article originally appeared in Michael Moorcock’s Multiverse #6, DC Comics, April 1998 and was reprinted in GEEK CONFIDENTIAL: ECHOES FROM THE 21ST CENTURY, edited by Rick Klaw, (Monkeybrain Books, 2003).

It is reprinted at Moorcock’s Miscellany by kind permission of the author.

Michael Moorcock and the Comics of the Multiverse

It was an inauspicious start for the man who would become one of the most important genre writers of the latter half of the 20th century. In1956, at the age of 16, Michael Moorcock began contributing to Tarzan Adventures, a weekly boys’ magazine containing both text and comics.
...

© Rick Klaw 1998
Not to disagree with Mr. Klaw, but when I was a kid back in the early 70's, I had a chance to read some of those old Tarzan Adventures, collected in a large bound volume. At the time, they were very enjoyable and seemed to be quality work. They certainly didn't come across as "inauspicious."
Reply With Quote
Reply
Go Back   Moorcock's Miscellany > THE MULTIVERSE > The Inner Landscape ◦ Articles, Interviews & Reviews

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
FAQ: What comics have been based on Michael Moorcock's books/characters? Whiskers FAQ 0 09-07-2011 07:32 AM
FAQ: What comics has Michael Moorcock written? Whiskers FAQ 0 09-07-2011 07:31 AM
Michael Moorcock's Multiverse dasNdanger Q&A ◦ Questions for Mike & News 55 08-03-2009 03:53 PM
Michael Moorcock's Multiverse Whiskers Elric: The Making of a Sorcerer 13 07-11-2005 04:43 AM
Michael Moorcock's Multiverse ThanosShadowsage Mike's Comics 15 11-24-2004 10:54 AM

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Become a Member

Register


Michael Moorcock

Home Page
Author Biography
The Q&A
Contact Policy
Reviews
Bibliography
Reading List
Web articles/stories


The Miscellany

Forums
Image Hive
Media Hive
Wikiverse
Buy Books


About Moorcock's Miscellany

Code of Conduct
Site History
Site Policies
FAQ
Credits
Copyright Notice
Make a Donation


Search

Search HOWTO
Google Search
Forum Search
Forum Tag Swarm
Image Search
Image Tag Swarm
Wiki Search
Random Wiki Page


Join us

Announcement emails
@MoorcocksMisc on Twitter
Jerry Cornelius on Facebook
RSS Feed


JAYDE DESIGN has a large selection of M.M. books and magazines for sale. Several hundred items, including many first editions, "Eternal Champion" omnibuses,
scarce 'New Worlds' issues, plus many other items...

For a full, printed for-sale list, or if you have specific wants, please e-mail:

JaydeDesign@
CompuServe.com



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 03:03 PM.