Ryan's Reviews > Promethea, Vol. 3

Promethea, Vol. 3 by Alan Moore
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's review
May 03, 2011

liked it

Moore's interest in the occult takes over the book, and its quality suffers a great deal as a result. The "plot" still exists in some form, as Sophie travels up the kabalistic tree of creation, but it is second to Moore's attempt to synthesize Egyptian, Judaic, Roman, Greek, Norse, Christian, etc. mythologies into a complete system for understanding the world. It really starts to fall into the morass of new age mysticism and hippie simple-mindedness, complete with faux-insightful comments such as, "It's like, we don't have emotions; emotions have us, you know?" That's an actual quote. Moore seems to be very impressed with himself, even having the characters compliment each other on their "deep thoughts" by saying -- and again, this is an actual quote -- "Wow, that's really deep!" I would love to think that this is all just Moore taking the piss, but I know that, unfortunately, he thinks that this stuff is actually meaningful. It's not that various occult systems are not interesting objects of study; all the ways that humans attempt to organize and interpret reality are interesting. Moore just takes it all so seriously despite the fact that his "insights" are so obviously fabricated and require him to stretch and distort various mythological systems to conform to what is essentially a very conventional, and essentialist, Western understanding of human nature. The identification of an essential "father-masculine" force and "feminine-mother" force as the motive powers of the universe is perhaps the most egregious example of his anthropomorphic, heteronormative, and Euro-slash-JudeoXian perspective. But, the artwork by Williams continues to excel and, despite the story's major weaknesses, the graphic storytelling is truly cutting edge. It's just sad it doesn't serve an interesting plot.
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