“This could be an entire other article, sell this to Wizard magazine, 'Rob Liefeld goes after Alan Moore'” -- Rob Liefeld, during our interview for this week's cover. Since I don't work for Wizard, and this particular tangent didn't make it into the paper, you're gonna get it here, because it's just too good not to share: the “controversial” artist talking some smack on one of comicdom's most acclaimed writers, creator of Watchmen and V for Vendetta among many others...
“Alan Moore – he just did his own thing. We just stayed out of his way. He had written a miniseries for us called Badrock/Violator...at the time, Alan was doing purposefully campy, over-the-top kinda stuff. We loved the few stories he had done for Superman, and I’m not stupid so we just got out of the way [writing Liefeld's SUPREME] and let him roll.”
“We didn’t get the right artist for him until about ten issues in, then the second year, they put together a great run. That 24 issues was as well –received a comic as you’re gonna find, I still meet people who are like, wow, that was great, but we had no input. That was Alan. And to me, honestly, that was Alan’s last great stuff. Because when Awesome, my main investor went belly up --my investor had a video game company, a recording company, andf a comic book company, and overnight, they were all gone -- and Alan, I think had really dug what he was doing with us, because by then he’d expanded it from Supreme to Youngblood, to Glory...I still have all his original proposals, they’re a riot, dude. He’s definitely taking archetypes and doing the Alan Moore version...I called him up one time and said, 'Hey Alan, how about we do a Teen Titans style book,' and he went quiet and he goes 'That’s what Youngblood is.' I thought that was our Avengers-type book.”
“But then he took that formula and just kinda did that same thing, I mean, Tom Strong is Supreme, it’s flattering that he found his groove back with us and started winning awards back with us because people forget, he’d fallen off the map, you can’t really find a great Alan Moore book from ’90 to like ’96, when he did Supreme, even the stuff he did for Todd [McFarlane] was derided like he was asleep at the wheel, like he didn’t care because it was campy, whereas with Supreme he gave it that Silver Age with a twist, and nobody was doing that. And again, what he did for Supreme was ripped off for the next five years by all the other writers. He’s always been a trendsetter.”
“If you’ve done business with Alan, you have a different opinion of Alan. He markets himself as a poet, but he’s just a ruthless businessman, like everybody else, he kept wanting to more work because he just wanted to get paid. Jeph Loeb, he can tell you.”
“You worship at the altar of Alan, and then you go, oh, he’s just another guy that’s looking to get paid, and that’s why he’d do 3-4 books a month for us. Literally, he’d send three scripts through the copy machine”
“He’s brilliant, but to me I think he’s been revealed as someone who’s spiraled wildly out of control. Like, he had a falling out with Wildstorm, you know, he’s having another falling out with DC, he won’t work for Marvel. At some point you put yourself on line and go, well, gee, Alan, is it everyone else, or is it you?”
“Alan just wants to get paid more money, that’s it. Sorry Alan. I got my body of work out of Alan Moore, he doesn’t intimidate me, I don’t put him on a pedestal like Jack Kirby and Frank Miller,. He’s just a guy who wants to get paid, and he cuts deals for himself that he doesn’t like down the line, and then he gets whiny and cries about it...Hey man, he worked for me for two years, I was quiet for like ten years. And then I watched him burn every other bridge, and I go “Hmm.” Although we didn’t have a falling out with him. He just stopped working with us, because he now wanted to invest in his new universe with Wildstorm comics, and again, like I said, OOPS! That went up in flames. He gives 'temperamental artist' a new meaning.”
“And he comes out and he lets everybody know now 'I’m going to crap all over the adaptations you do,' he’s shown no loyalty to his fellow artists like Dave Gibbons or David Lloyd. He knows that by coming out and crapping on the movie, he’s gonna keep a certain percentage of the fan base away. He’s an interesting cat, someone should do a documentary, I’m waiting for the CRUMB version of Alan Moore.”
“He once called us up to tell us that he had just been in the dream realm and talking to Socrates and Shakespeare, and to Moses, dead serious, and that they talked for what seemed to be months, but when he woke up, only an evening had passed, and he came up with these great ideas. And I’m tellin’ ya, I think it’s shtick, dude. I think it’s all shtick. I’m gonna start saying that stuff. Cuz you know what? It makes you instantly interesting. Like 'O yeah, last night I was hanging out with Socrates. Came to me in a dream. We played poker . We dropped acid.' That’s the kinda stuff Alan would say all the time, and he’d say 'Oh, I’ve been practicing dark magic.'”
Liefeld goes on to describe a comic book pitched to him by Moore that he still owns the rights to, entitled War Child. Written shortly after Moore saw Pulp Fiction for the first time, it's a knights-of-the-round-table concept set in a Tarantino-esque inner city gangland setting.
“I have him on tape for 4 hours just talking about it; it’s my most cherished possession”
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“You haven’t lived until you’ve heard Alan describe the heroes – this is in the near future – getting trapped in an amusement park in Compton, where one of the rides you go on is a drive-by shooting.”
“A couple of the artists I gave it to handed it back. The first ten pages is some of the most difficult, visually, it’s hard to crack. We’ll probably publish it in script form. I can’t crack this, life’s too short.”
“There’s standing atop a building, looking in through the window at a certain angle, while the person is sitting doing their hair looking at themselves in the mirror...and the panel descriptions, you go, how do I shoot this? I could shoot it with a camera, but like all the storyboards? It’s just very difficult.”
“He’s a genius, a showman, a shrewd businessman, and a whiner. I have no intention of working with him again.”