Alan Moore Will Write Crossed Series Set 100 Years Into the Future
In spite of a professed discomfort with the horror genre, beloved comic writer Alan Moore has signed on to write six issues of the speculative horror series Crossed, which will take place a century into the future.
[Credit: Avatar Comics]
Crossed depicts a post-apocalyptic world that has been ravaged by a virus that causes the infected, distinguishable by the cross-shaped rash on their faces, to act on all of their most evil impulses. But unlike the infected in zombie narratives like The Walking Dead or even other mind-altering pandemic narratives like 28 Days Later, the Crossed maintain normal levels of intelligence, and as a result are far more dangerous and far more recognizable as humans. The series is most definitely not for the faint of heart, as by all accounts it makes the world of The Purge look like a Disney movie. It contains graphic depictions of murder, rape, torture, infanticide, amputation, essentially every (often sexualized) act of violence imaginable.
Crossed was created by Garth Ennis, best known for the comic series Preacher and a nine-year stint on The Punisher, who is, incidentally, the most nihilistic, violent, and horrific version of a mainstream superhero.
Moore, who just finished a million-word novel called Jerusalem that is reportedly too large for him to lift, will write an entire century of "missing history" for the world of Crossed, as well as "creating an entirely new world." He admits that Crossed is "extremely horrible," but wanted to write for the series as a result of its dystopian leanings, which will only be enhanced by setting it in the far future. "I think people think of Crossed as a horror story, and I can see why," said Moore. "But actually I've always had my problems with genre, and I am coming to the conclusion that genre has really only ever been a convenience. Now, looking at Crossed, I was actually thinking that this, for my purposes, is a horror story, but it's also a science fiction story. I was thinking that Crossed is actually a science fiction story that has got a really, really high horror quotient. So that was the way that I started approaching it. I was treated Crossed as a 'What if?' story, which is the premise of most science fiction... What kind of human future would there be at all? Would humans all be gone?"
[Credit: Avatar Comics]
Ennis was more than flattered that the legendary writer, who was behind classic graphic novels like V for Vendetta and Watchmen, was interested in his series: "So it turns out Jimi Hendrix wants to play in my band. He wants to sing my songs. I don't usually worry about vindication, but Alan is probably the one person whose opinion would be enough to change my mind about what I do. He's the most talented individual the medium's ever seen or ever will; that he's writing Crossed means everything to me."
Crossed writer Simon Spurrier is similarly impressed with Moore's talents: "Other writers hint at their cleverness through a lens of smirking mysteries, Alan invites you in for a cup of tea and lets you poke his with a sharp stick. You don't have to think he's right to think he's Right. Likewise, you don't have to enjoy horrific things to find value in horror fiction. And you don't have to like Crossed to know Alan's take on it will be very, very interesting indeed."
The Crossed series, as a whole, has achieved cult status, but is unsurprisingly controversial. Many critics have annihilated it for its "gratuitous" and "pornographic" violence, while others, while conceding that it's not "enjoyable" per se, find value in its bleak indictment of human nature, its exploration of the loss of humanity in the few non-infected survivors (much like the critically acclaimed Walking Dead), and its willingness to shock the reader and explore terrain that most would shy away from.
One five-star Amazon review read, "I hate this comic. After I 'm done reading it, I'm going to create a pine box, place this comic inside, and set it on fire. It has literally destroyed a piece of my psyche. And for all that, it deserves 5 STARS."
Crossed +100 will come out in December.