Kirk's Reviews > Promethea, Vol. 1

Promethea, Vol. 1 by Alan Moore
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Jan 04, 14

Read in January, 2009

In which a chain-smoking Little Red Riding Hood sports a machine gun. A weeping gorilla laments not buying windows 95, and a hack writer misspells himself a path to Godhood.

Promethea has much to offer for both the general reader and writers alike. The tale begins with two stories, delicately interwoven. The great thing about the narrative technique used in the first chapter is that we get the legend underlying the modern-day tale without inhibiting the story. Whenever a story requires context of this nature, if not handled with finesse the story can become dry relatively quickly. Generally the backstory, while relevant to the overarching plot, does little to move that plot forward. Rather, the backstory seems to alleviate or absolve confusing points that arise later in the narrative, and augments the pace at which a reader can digest the tale. Here we see Moore's narrative both serving the traditional function of backstory, while simultaneously moving the plot line forward. Of course, Moore's parallel panel technique, employed in classics like The Killing Joke, serves to smooth the transitions between the backstory and the current tale of Promethea.

In addition to a great storyline, Moore touches down on a theory about imagination that parallels Jung's concept of the collective unconscious. Moore's ideas about imagination existing in a separate realm, in which all that has ever been conceived of exists, springs up in Supreme and several of Moore's other tales. It is developed to the greatest extent in Promethea, and should be held in high regard by Moore's fans for this reason alone.

But the book has so much more to offer. I highly recommend this title not just to fans of the graphic novel, but to all readers.

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