May 31, 2014


Cover for Tom Strong and The Planet of Peril N. 2. Penciler: C. Sprouse; Inker: K. Story; Colorist: J. Bellaire.
Peter Hogan is a well-know British comics writer with a long career in the industry. He collaborated with Alan Moore on the ABC's line, especially on Tom Strong series. After the conclusion of the line he wrote solo two miniseries of the character - Tom Strong and The Robots of Doom and Tom Strong and The Planet of Peril. He is also the co-creator - with artist Steve Parkhouse - of Resident Alien series published by Dark Horse. As announced just few days ago, he is also part of Electricomics, Alan Moore's most recent project.

Below you can read an interview I did with Peter Hogan, conducted via email in April and May 2014.
My special thanks to Mr. Hogan for his kindness and willingness.

Peter Hogan's entry at The Comic Book Database: here.
Peter Hogan.
smoky man: Tom Strong remains the only “survivor” of Moore’s ABC line. You contributed some issues to the original series created by Moore and artist Chris Sprouse, collaborated with Moore on the Terra Obscura miniseries and then, after the end of the line in 2006, you became the writer of the title producing the new miniseries Tom Strong and the Robots of Doom and the recent Tom Strong and the Planet of Peril.
What do you find interesting in writing Tom Strong? I think it’s an almost perfect mix of classic and modern, also a great vessel for entertaining and intelligent adventure stories.
Peter Hogan: Yes, I agree. Tom’s a great character, with a great supporting cast. A lot of people tend to pick up on the pulp trappings, but to me Tom is more of a Silver Age character. He has that purity of being, and whatever the modern world throws at him… I won’t say it has no effect on him, but he can handle it.

I also think that Tom Strong’s family plays a great, key role in his stories, the human dynamics. What is your approach, regarding this aspect? I am curious as a reader interested in better understanding the “creative process”, how you - as writer - approach and handle this specific characters and… characters general…
Well, the good thing about Tom and his world is that it’s on a very human scale. There’s continuity to be dealt with, there’s a complex array of relationships and quite a few characters to be taken into account … but it’s all of a manageable size, so it’s possible to write involving and dynamic stories. I think where the big superhero universes have gone drastically wrong is that they’ve been strangled by their own continuity. There’s a strength and an elegance to simplicity, which is what they once possessed but no longer do.
As to how the character dynamics work … the answer isn’t that easy, because I don’t truly understand it myself. I mean, you can plot out logically what should happen, what you’d like to happen … but the characters might not go along with it. It’s an aspect of writing that probably sounds pretentious to anyone on the outside, but it’s absolutely true. Characters will say and do things that really surprise and delight you, and whether it’s your own subconscious at work, or whether you’re channeling something from out of the Aether … who knows ? But that is genuinely how it works. Bad writers are the ones who can’t put their own egos to one side and allow that process to happen, and consequently their characters tend to be two-dimensional.
Chris Sprouse's cover for Tom Strong N. 23.
Character-driven story versus plot-driven story: which one is your favourite choice as writer? Or maybe this is not a proper question and it depends from time to time…
I don’t really think in those terms. You need good characters, and you need a good plot, whatever you’re doing. But I remember Neil Gaiman once defining ‘plot’ as : anything that keeps the reader turning the pages, and doesn’t leave them feeling cheated at the end. I’d go along with that. So, ‘plot’ can be a pretty loose concept, but you absolutely can’t do without good characters.

Back to Tom Strong. Another key ingredient of the series is… the sense of wonder, often with a classic sci-fi flavor. Which are your references or influences, or just simple interests regarding this subject?
Well, I’m only six months younger than Alan, so broadly speaking we have the same set of influences. We grew up with the same comics and movies and books … and up until the very late 1960s I think that all that sci-fi adventure material was largely very positive and optimistic, and the future was viewed as a set of dazzling possibilities. I think there are echoes of all that in Tom Strong, but it’s all filtered through a modern sensibility.
Which is a hard thing to pull off. It’s a bit like trying to do a Capra-esque fantasy movie now. It’s really, really hard, because the modern world isn’t as innocent as the 1930s, and you have to take that into account. It CAN be done – Groundhog Day did it, for one – but it’s hard.
Page 13 from Tom Strong and The Robots of Doom N. 6. Pencils: C. Sprouse. Inks: K. Story.
We are talking about comics which means… drawings and storytelling, of course. So… what about your collaborative relationship with artist and co-creator Chris Sprouse? I personally think Sprouse’s clean style is the perfect match for Tom Strong being able to create a classic sci-fi atmosphere for the city, the architectures, the machines… and, at the same time, to make the characters act with great naturalness…              
I agree. Tom is Chris’s baby, and he does him better than anyone else. For me, that’s a joy, because I know Chris will always come up with the goods and I can just trust him to get on with it. Hopefully Chris feels the same way about me! When Wildstorm asked me to revive Tom for Robots Of Doom, none of us were sure if Chris would be able to take part, but I’m very glad that he did.
And I think Chris would be happy to keep on with Tom forever. On my side, I have ideas for at least the next two storylines, so … I just hope they give us the go ahead to do them. 

Now Tom Strong is under the Vertigo label: did this impact in any way on the character and the way you handle him and his stories?
Absolutely not. It was just a change of label, and our editor now is Kristy Quinn, who was the assistant editor on all the ABC titles. I do think it’s a shame that they didn’t keep the ABC name on it, just because, but … it was their call. They probably felt you couldn’t have a comics line with just one comic in it. 

The Planet of Peril is still unpublished in Italy. I read the original issues but I don’t want to spoil any bit of the story… so, can you reveal anything about it for the Italian readers?
It sort of grew out of the fact that the last time we saw Tesla in Robots of Doom she’d just announced that she was pregnant. Which I thought was just a nice thing to do, to have Tom becoming a grandfather – and curiously, it also coincided with Alan becoming a grandfather ! Anyway, when it came time to think of a follow-up story it occurred to me that the pregnancy might actually be a dangerous situation for Tesla, since her husband is a fire-being. It could be life-threatening.
So what might save her ? I came to the same conclusion that Tom does in the story, and that leads him to travel to Terra Obscura. Since I’d wanted to go back there anyway, and this allowed me to do it, I was delighted. But it’s a VERY dark story, because Terra Obscura is in the middle of a crisis where millions of people are dying. So there’s no big villain here, and it’s basically a story about death and how people deal with it. People who were expecting a more conventional superhero adventure didn’t really get it, but the people who were a bit more open-minded seemed to really love it. Anyway, it does have a happy ending, and I’m very proud of it.
Terra Obscura volume. Cover by Janick Paquette. Ink: Karl Story.
You and Alan Moore. This is an obvious question for you, probably one you answered several times in the past… So, how did you collaborate with Moore on previous stories and… did you “consult” him, or ask him any “support” or “comment” on the new mini-series you wrote “solo”?
Well, with Terra Obscura it was a full collaboration – Alan and I sat face to face and thrashed out the plots, and then I went home and wrote the scripts. With the other ABC stuff, like the early Tom stories, we’d chat on the phone and sometimes he’d suggest things, but mostly it was me asking him questions about backstory and so on.
Then when Wildstorm asked me if I’d revive Tom a few years later, it was completely conditional on Alan being okay with the idea. So I rang him up, and fortunately for me he was happy for me to carry on. But there was kind of an implicit understanding that I was on my own from then on, and shouldn’t bother him about it at all. So from that point on it’s been just me.

What did happen to America’s Best Comics: A to Z? Will we ever see the two remaining planned issues?
I very much doubt it. They just cancelled the whole thing halfway through. The only one of mine that never appeared was the entry on Smax, which was the weakest one I wrote by far, so I’m not that sorry that it never came out. The remainder of those issues would have been written by Steve Moore, and that is a loss … I would have absolutely loved to see what Steve might have done with Promethea, but I don’t know if he even wrote a word of it before they cancelled the series. If he did, maybe it’ll surface after all his papers have been gone through.
The whole A-Z thing was weird. It was basically Alan’s idea. He was finishing up his last couple of issues for ABC, and so I think he envisioned this series as a way of rebooting the line, giving Wildstorm a springboard from which to relaunch all the titles. Looked at in that light, it makes perfect sense, whereas if Wildstorm already knew that they were going to shut the ABC line down it made no sense at all – but I think that was actually the case.
They just wouldn’t discuss future plans at all, and that had been the case for months and months before the A-Z series even got under way, so it’s not like it was the poor sales of that which made up their minds. I think they’d just decided to shut it all down the second Alan walked out the door … which is kind of understandable, but I think they could have made it work without him if they’d actually thought about it. They made a LOT of bad decisions back then. 

Any desire to do something with the other ABC’s characters, under the hypothesis that it could be something possible? Personally I think you could write a great Top Ten run…
Well, I did get to do Top Ten – and a lot of the other ABC characters – in the A-Z series … but any more than that isn’t very likely. They haven’t even let Zander Cannon finish his run on the title, and I really wish they would. I was thoroughly enjoying it, and I know I’m not the only one.
Right now I’m waiting for them to agree to another series of Tom, which is my first priority. After that, I’d also like to do another series of Terra Obscura … and the only other character that might really tempt me beyond that is Jonni Future. If they ever ask me, we’ll see. 
Steve Parkhouse's cover for Resident Alien N. 0.
You are also writing an interesting comic for Dark Horse titled Resident Alien, with art by Steve Parkhouse. Can you say something about it? I read that Parkhouse provided the initial impetus for the series…
Yeah, that’s true. I’d worked with Steve before, and wanted to work with him again, and he’d said that he’d like to do something that involved aliens. Resident Alien is what I came up with, and it’s about an alien who’s shipwrecked here, waiting for a rescue ship that might never come. He’s been laying low, and masquerading as a doctor … and even though we show him as an alien throughout the whole story, it’s clear from other people’s reactions that everyone he encounters sees him as being human.
Anyway, when the local town’s doctor gets murdered, they ask him to help out. And he likes being a part of the town, and gets hooked on solving crimes … So, the movie pitch would probably be : alien detective. That’s pretty much all you need to know. The second series is just about to come out in trade paperback, Steve’s currently drawing the third series and I’m halfway through writing the fourth. We plan to be doing this for a while !

From your privileged perspective, what is your perception of comics today, both as a medium and as an industry?
As a medium it remains as fantastic as it ever was, and I think that will endure indefinitely, whatever effect technology has upon how people read.
As an industry it seems to be right in the middle of some big changes, and some of those changes are exciting and some of them are a little scary. We have far more publishers around now, and ones who are open to a wider range of ideas and genres, and that’s a very good thing – especially since the Big Two seem far less adventurous these days than they have been in the past. I’m reminded of dinosaurs, and I wish I wasn’t.
The industry will change, that’s the only thing that’s for certain, but … I wouldn’t want to place any bets on how ! Just so long as we can still create comics AND make a living, it’ll all be okay.

What about your future projects?
More Resident Alien, for sure. Right now I'm just putting together a proposal for a graphic novel, which I hope I can find a home for. And, as you know, I've done a short story for Electricomics.
Electricomics' people at work.
And... exactly, what is Electricomics?
It's an anthology of short stories written especially with electronic gizmos - things like tablets - in mind. Alan Moore rang me up about this nearly three years ago, and asked me if I'd like to take part. It's taken that long to get the project off the ground. The idea is basically to try and come up with stories that take advantage of an electronic medium, that couldn't be told the same way in print. So ... it's kind of an experiment, and was very challenging to write.

Can you also reveal us any detail about Cabaret Amygdala your contribution to it announced as "modernist horror"?
Well, it's actually called Cabaret Amygdala Presents ... Second Sight. Cabaret Amygdala was Alan's title, which I thought would make a good umbrella concept, like The Twilight Zone. Anyway, Alan asked me to come up with a horror story that would make people feel ... uneasy. It's not standard supernatural horror at all, because I can't really relate to that. There are aspects of the supernatural that I believe in, like ghosts, but I'm not at all scared of them. And most other aspects - the devil, vampires and so on - I just think are ludicrous, and also well past their sell by date. With this story I pulled together a couple of concepts that I personally find kind of creepy, and I hope other people will feel the same way.

Thank you Peter for your time and the great answers.

Italian version: here.

May 30, 2014

Alan Moore reinvents comics: ELECTRICOMICS!

Big announcement dated 28th of May: ELECTRICOMICS!
Below, you can read the press release and the Electricomics' team "Welcome letter". 

You can also read more at:
Mitch Jenkins's blog: here.
Colleen Doran's Tumblr: here.
Todd Klein's site: here (about the Electricomics' logo creation)
and The Beat: here.

The most famous modern comic book writer in the world, Alan Moore, is leading a research and development project to create an app enabling digital comics to be made by anyone.
Already known for revolutionising the comic book industry in the 1980s, Moore is pushing boundaries again with Electricomics - an app that is both a comic book and an easy-to-use open source toolkit. Being open source and free, the app has wide potential not just for industry professionals, but also businesses, arts organisations and of course comic fans and creators everywhere.

“Personally, I can’t wait,” said Moore. “With Electricomics, we are hoping to address the possibilities of comic strips in this exciting new medium, in a way that they have never been addressed before.

“Rather than simply transferring comic narrative from the page to the screen, we intend to craft stories expressly devised to test the storytelling limits of this unprecedented technology. To this end we are assembling teams of the most cutting edge creators in the industry and then allowing them input into the technical processes in order to create a new capacity for telling comic book stories.

“It will then be made freely available to all of the exciting emergent talent that is no doubt out there, just waiting to be given access to the technical toolkit that will enable them to create the comics of the future.”

Electricomics will be a 32-page showcase with four very different original titles:
Big Nemo - set in the 1930s, Alan Moore revisits Winsor McCay’s most popular hero. Art by Colleen Doran. 
Cabaret Amygdala - modernist horror from writer Peter Hogan (Terra Obscura)
Red Horse - on the anniversary of the beginning of World War One, Garth Ennis (Preacher, The Boys) and Danish artist Peter Snejbjerg (World War X) take us back to the trenches
Sway - a slick new time travel science fiction story from Leah Moore and John Reppion (Sherlock Holmes - The Liverpool Demon, 2000 AD)

Electricomics will be self published by Moore and long time collaborator Mitch Jenkins as Orphans of the Storm, and funded by the Digital R&D Fund for the Arts. As a publicly funded research and development project, Electricomics will be free to explore the possibilities of the comic medium, without the constraints of the industry.

The app will be built by Ocasta Studios, under the guidance of Ed Moore (no relation). Ocasta create apps for the likes of Vodaphone, Yahoo, and Widerweb which link service providers and their customers. They are excited to be making their first foray into the world of comics.

The research team will be led by Dr Alison Gazzard, who has published widely on space, time and play in interactive media, and is a Lecturer in Media Arts at the London Knowledge Lab, Institute of Education. Joining her, Daniel Merlin Goodbrey is a pioneer in the field of experimental digital comics and senior lecturer at The University of Hertfordshire.

Moore’s daughter Leah will edit the project, having created the 150 page digital comic The Thrill Electric for C4 Education in 2011.

About the Digital R&D Fund for the Arts
The Digital R&D fund for the Arts is a £7 million fund to support collaboration between organisations with arts projects, technology providers, and researchers. It is a partnership between Arts Council England (, Arts and Humanities Research Council ( and Nesta (
We want to see projects that use digital technology to enhance audience reach and/or develop new business models for the arts sector. With a dedicated researcher or research team as part of the three-way collaboration, learning from the project can be captured and disseminated to the wider arts sector.
Every project needs to identify a particular question or problem that can be tested. Importantly this question needs to generate knowledge for other arts organisations that they can apply to their own digital strategies.
Welcome to…Electricomics.

Almost three years ago, Alan Moore had an Idea.

Whilst working with director Mitch Jenkins on The Show, an eerie film and TV concept which seemed to have a life of its own, he imagined the children in the background of a scene reading comics on transparent flexible scrolls called Spindles.
The comics, he idly supposed, would be Electricomics, and would be yet another facet of the multi-nuanced and multimedia world of The Show.

So far so dull right? Big Idea Man has yet another idea.


Alan Moore ideas have an uncanny habit of inveigling themselves into reality, by fair means or foul, they emerge somewhere and demand to be taken seriously.

Almost a year on, when the small film project had inflated in the manner of an airbag deployed in case of cultural stupor, to become not just one but several films, not just one story but dozens of them woven together into a huge billowing cloud of wonder. It was then, that a colleague of theirs happened to chat to a friend and mention that scrappy little idea,

That was all the chance it needed, and before you could say ‘Hold on is this wise?’ or ‘ Don’t we all have other jobs to do?’ there was a meeting and a pitch and a funding application to the Digital Research & Development fund for the Arts. The path was not straight or quick, but in the end it arrived here, in this website, in this project, before your very eyes.

The team that was assembled then could not be more delighted, and more than a little surprised, to find themselves here and now in this position.

They have been charged with the task of producing new comics for the digital age.
They must attempt new storytelling techniques, create and use new comic making tools which they must then make freely available to everyone.

This large and somewhat daunting burden will be shared with them, by such mighty talents as Garth Ennis, Nicola Scott, Jose Villarrubia, Pete Hogan, Peter Snejbjerg, and Todd Klein.
The stories produced will not only showcase what is possible but also hopefully inspire others to do the same.
The Electricomics toolkit would give users the power to create their own
Different, better comics, completely new and fresh comics in every way.

Right now, as this project launches,
Electricomics is still an idea up in the ether, a hope and  a plan before it becomes a reality, but like I said, Alan Moore ideas usually find a way to get through.


Coming soon.

May 27, 2014

Moore and... God is dead!

From June 2014 Diamond Previews, an interesting surprise project by Avatar Press!

(W) Alan Moore & Various (A) Facundo Percio & Various (CA) Jacen Burrows

The greatest assembled team of writers unleash all-new tales of Gods and men in the biggest event of the summer! Two giant-size issues could only be kicked off with the biggest writer in all of comics, ALAN MOORE, as he brings a tale only he could tell - when his personal God Glycon comes to Earth! Reunited with Facundo (Fashion Beast) Percio, Alan himself stars in a story about where Gods really get their power. [...] 

The Alpha and the Omega, two epic tomes that you don't want to miss! 
Available with lovely Regular, Iconic, and End of Days covers by series cover artist Jacen Burrows. Also a Carnage Wraparound by German Nobile and Divine and Pure Art Retailer Incentives by Burrows. You also don't want to miss the Glycon Leather cover by Burrows or get everything at once with the Deluxe Collector Set!"
UPDATE (from Bleedingcool): 
"[...] Alan Moore returns to comics with a fully scripted stand-alone story as part of the God is Dead universe which is poised to enter its second arc entitled The Book of Acts. God is Dead launched in 2013 with Jonathan Hickman and Mike Costa as writers, later taken on fully by Costa, and drawn by German Erramouspe [...].
In August, a two-part significant addition to the story will include “Alpha” and “Omega” containing multiple stories of gods returned to earth, and encapsulated within Costa’s wider final answer to the question “Who killed God?” Alan Moore’s 10 page story with artist Facundo Percio (Fashion Beast), entitled “Grandeur and Monstrosity” delivers what comic readers almost certainly never expected to see: a full-blown discussion of the origin and significance of Glycon as a god. And so much more.
The story is set in the “modern day” of the God is Dead universe when many of the gods have already returned to earth, garnering worshipers and wreaking havoc, and the premise draws Moore even further into the world of current comics by including Alan Moore the character in a story of his own devising, as active participant and narrator. It’s a fourth-wall breaking astonishing appearance that shows just how experimental Moore is prepared to be as a writer.

As people become disillusioned by the returned gods, the noticeably unreturned god Glycon piques curiosity and hope in a few would-be-followers, drawing Moore into their desperate plea for a priest and an encounter with Glycon himself. Moore so deftly comments on the impact of “incarnated gods” and the ideas that sway humanity that the story, laced with “edgy” and very funny moments, acts as a kind of commentary on the whole God is Dead storyline. Expect to not only encounter Glycon for yourself as a reader, replete with his historical context, but also some of the other “returned Gods” in the Judeo-Christian tradition to react to this monstrous puppet deity.

[...] the comic is also dedicated to Steve Moore in honor of his work and the lasting impact he had on the lives of his friends."

May 20, 2014

A major comic project is coming!

A frame from His Heavy Heart.
Excerpt from Mitch Jenkins' blog dated the 13th of May

"We will also be announcing a rather major new Comic project any day, as it seems the contract has finally been agreed. So much more on this to follow in the coming days...We can't wait!"

Me too! :)

May 19, 2014

Supreme and Youngblood by Alberto Ponticelli

Art by Alberto Ponticelli.
From Alan Moore: Portrait of an Extraordinary Gentleman book (2003, Abiogenesis Press, page 266).
Above, you can see a great Supreme/Youngblood illustration drawn by internationally renowned Italian artist ALBERTO PONTICELLI.
The illustration has been posted on this blog with the artist' permission.
For more information about Ponticelli, visit his site here.

May 12, 2014

Joe Bennett: Supreme Artist

Joe Bennett's re-creation of Supreme N. 41 cover.
Interview by Flavio Pessanha. Translation from Portuguese to English by Flavia Ferreira.
Interview done in March 2014.

Posted on this blog with Pessanha's permission. 


SUPREME is one of the greatest comics ever to be created and Joe Bennett - real name Benedito José do Nascimento - was in the right place at the right time. He was the only Brazilian artist to have worked with scripts written by Alan Moore and he was the responsible for the visual reconceptualisation of this work.

Initially, SUPREME was a generic and unoriginal character that mixed together elements of several other industry-consolidated heroic archetypes. Alan Moore took on the title in 1996 and worked with total freedom to alter and recreate the character. So he transformed SUPREME into a tribute to SUPERMAN, THE MAN OF STEEL. Arguably, he wrote the best story ever created of the first and greatest of all superheroes. Nearly 60 years of stories, multiple versions, various foes, contradictory mythologies… everything was unified in one unique story of the foremost superhero icon in comics.  

Benedito José do Nascimento was born in Belém, a city in the far north of Brazil. He started his Arts career in the national titles Calafrio (Shiver) and Mestres do Terror (Masters of Terror), and in 1995 his unique art won him a spot in Image under the pseudonym Joe Bennett. In the following year, his partnership with Alan Moore began and he was in charge of the artistic conceptualisation of SUPREME and, in 1997, he was invited to work for Marvel in the title AMAZING SPIDERMAN. From this point onwards, Bennett’s career turned into an extraordinary artistic brainstorm: he was working for Marvel, DC Comics and a few other houses, drawing a pantheon of their most notable characters.

Alan Moore BR, the Brazilian Facebook page dedicated to Alan Moore: here.
Joe Bennett and... his powerful drawing tools!
AMBr:  Joe, you drew the first Supreme stories that Alan Moore wrote. How do you appraise the work you did back then?
Joe Bennett:  I wish I could go back in time and redo it all. [But] the ‘Image Era’ limited my style. I could have done something much better like for instance the issue I did recently for SUPERMAN; that should have been my draughtsmanship for SUPREME.   

But Extreme - the Liefeld's studio inside Image (then Maximum Press and then Awesome Comics) - was known to impose a specific art mould, the "Liefeld school", correct?
JB: Yes, back then it was like that, only those who kept to that prevailing style could draw for Image and I never liked that, but I needed to work. I have always been a fan of the classic in comics: Hal Foster, Alex Raymond, John Buscema, Garcia Lopez. It was a pain for me to draw in that Image style because I have always had a good narrative, but there was no room for good storytelling, it had to be just the visual and the thrashing. It was hard, but I adapted fast and soon enough I went back to my original style.
Variant cover for Supreme N. 41. Pencils by Joe Bennett.
And how was it, to work with Alan Moore scripts? Was his level of detailing very high?
JB: Yes, it was enormous. And I always say that I feared changing anything, because if he asks you that a dog crosses the road in the background, you get scared not to draw it… Who knows if that dog is going to become a cosmic entity in the future of the script? [laughs] But it was very good, it was a lesson on how to do scripts.

You were already on it before Alan Moore got on board. How was this change of scriptwriter?
JB: I even thought I would be out… But no, I stayed. And it caused me diarrhoea for three days, seriously… I was nervous.  

Did drawing for Alan Moore demand more time? How long did it take you to make a single issue?
JB: No, what took me time was to read the script. There were four sheets for each page, or even more. But as usual, I finished an issue in twenty days.
Page from Supreme N. 41. Pencils by Joe Bennett.
You were one of the few Brazilian artists to have worked with Alan Moore. How important is it to your career, in your opinion?
JB: I think I was the only one to have done a script directly from him, because if I remember well, Avatar launched something, but it was a text adapted to script and the illustrator was Brazilian.
It was very good for my career, gave me an enviable CV, and for the fan in me, it’s a dream that came true, imagine a guitar player that plays at the local bar, playing alongside John Lennon? It was more or less like that.

What have you been doing these days, have you any authorial project coming up?
JB: Today I’m doing IRON MAN for Marvel and SOLAR for Dynamite. Concerning personal projects, I took a break from that, there is no chance of that happening in the near future, and I think that it probably never will happen.

What do you think of Alan Moore’s criticism of mainstream comics and his statement that readers became attached to an immature model of comics?
JB: I sign below it. I think comics are worn-out because whereas in the old days comics were created for all kinds of public, nowadays it is something that they make to see if it can get in the cinema or other mediums. I haven’t read comics for nearly twenty years because I can’t be bothered. I love my job, but I’m not obliged to read the new stuff that’s out there. I think they are all very silly. 
Cover for Supreme N. 42. Pencils by Joe Bennett.
Comics are not an expensive medium; you can make cosmic stories at a low cost. In cinema, it costs a fortune and to boost box office revenue, they work with a motion picture rating system for young people. Is it bad that comics have to be made for a younger audience so they can be compatible with its films?
JB: Yes, I think it’s awful. We would never see a Moore’s SWAMP THING released by a company like DC, nowadays. They no longer wager on something like that because everything is so shallow so it can be readily exported to Cinema and TV. It’s a massive shit, that’s what it is.   

Before the 1980s a comic book sold over half a million copies, nowadays if a comic book sells fifty thousand copies it is considered a hit. What happened to the industry?
JB: The industry has spiralled down because it has not evolved and the other mediums have. It’s very common to see huge crowds of people who are IRON MAN fans that never read anything about him or other heroes either. 

AMBr: What is the future of comics, Bennett? To what direction is it going to evolve?
JB: To be honest, I don’t know. Migrating to digital is the way out to many publishing houses. As for the production, it will still be on paper and ink… until one day everything will be done on the computer, in the Cintiqs of the world. But by then I’ll be retired (laughs).
Page from Supreme N. 42. Pencils by Joe Bennett.
What about comics in Brazil? Would you like to front projects that are geared towards our market?
JB: Yes, of course. I have something in mind, and it would be something rather good. But if there was never an industry before, there won’t be one now when the last ones to leave are turning out the lights.

In retrospect: Your career has been going for twenty years - which one is your favourite work? And which one would be your greatest dream? 
JB: Aside what I have accomplished with Moore, what I will do next is my favourite. I’d love to draw SUPERMAN again… I did only one of his comics, but I liked it so much. And if the scriptwriter were Warren Ellis, it would be fucking awesome.
Page from Supreme N. 43. Pencils by Joe Bennett.
To wrap it up, what material would you recommend to comic readers?
JB: All those by Moore and by Gaiman. All those by Miller prior to SIN CITY, minus the recent stuff, forget it because it’s all rubbish.

AMBr: Thank you very much, Joe Bennett.

Special thanks to Joe Bennett for conceding us this interview and for drawing the iconographic and stunning piece of art that opens this article. This artwork from 2014 is based on the cover of SUPREME N. 41, published in August 1996, when the Alan Moore phase began. [AMBr]