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V For VendettaWriter: Alan Moore

Artist: David Lloyd

Publisher: DC

Synopsis: A nuclear war has pushed England into becoming a totalitarian regime. The media is a puppet of the controlling interests, the police or "fingermen" are brutal thugs given free reign, and freedom is a thing of the past. But high atop the roofs of London, a mysterious figure in a smiling mask known only as V is committing a series of crimes aimed at damaging the fascist regime. Is V a hero? Or is he a madman out for revenge? And will England be better off for his interference?

How Is It?: One of Alan Moore's earliest works, this still demonstrates his flair for tightly woven stories, unique characters, and observations about society and civilization as an organism. It also features the "apocalyptic" themes that are prevalent in many of his work. The structure, though unrefined, is still striking and compelling as we move through several "acts", and it all hangs together remarkably well considering that the story was published as a series of four-page shorts over an extended time, without a developed outline. The art leaves something to be desired; it's done in a vague and undeliniated style, and the colours are flat and bland. But the statements Moore is making, while perhaps a little over-the-top, remain valid and important to our time and place. Moore was a little bit of a gloomy gus at this point, and indeed he still is, but he has something to say and he says it in an entertaining way.

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