Eruditorum Press

The Coalition of Chaos

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Elizabeth Sandifer

Elizabeth Sandifer created Eruditorum Press. She’s not really sure why she did that, and she apologizes for the inconvenience. She currently writes Last War in Albion, a history of the magical war between Alan Moore and Grant Morrison. She used to write TARDIS Eruditorum, a history of Britain told through the lens of a ropey sci-fi series. She also wrote Neoreaction a Basilisk, writes comics these days, and has ADHD so will probably just randomly write some other shit sooner or later.Support Elizabeth on Patreon.

14 Comments

  1. Mark Pontin
    July 15, 2014 @ 1:27 am

    Good work.

    Reply

  2. Tallifer
    July 15, 2014 @ 2:31 am

    Swamp Thing is my favourite work of Alan Moore's, so I have been eagerly awaiting these posts.

    Reply

  3. Heath
    July 15, 2014 @ 6:25 am

    I'm so intrigued by Moore's scripts that speak directly to his artists. Great inclusion, and a nice drawing back of the curtain on process. I would never take Moore for one who would give so much deference and control to his pencilers, but thinking about some of his various works, I suppose one can see an intentional emphasis on the style of the artists employed.

    Reply

  4. Matthew Blanchette
    July 15, 2014 @ 7:48 am

    I'm probably not as familiar with Moore's run on "Swamp Thing" as I should be, but this whole section here:

    "Another consequence of the jumbled production schedule by this point was that the production of issues #19, 20, and 21 overlapped. Bissette was pencilling #19, and since #21 was always envisioned by Moore as the proper start to his run, with issue #20 serving to wrap up the stray plot lines of Pasko’s run in much the same way that his first two Captain Britain strips had cleaned up the debris of the aborted Thorpe run. This meant that issue #19 had to be penciled by a guest artist, although John Totleben provided inks, thus maintaining a consistency of style. (It is worth noting that the Bissette/Totleben team was a more collaborative pencil/ink team than many, and that Totleben had an unusually large degree of freedom to rework pages.) Moore was thus left in the uncomfortable position of writing his first issue for an unknown artist, meaning, as he admitted in the script, that “I’m afraid I haven’t been able to tailor it to your specific style as I would have done normally.” "

    …shouldn't that read "This meant that issue #20 had to be penciled by a guest artist", since Bissette, the regular artist, was working on #19, and with Moore's first issue being #20? :-S

    Reply

  5. Elizabeth Sandifer
    July 15, 2014 @ 7:50 am

    Yes. Fixed.

    Reply

  6. Elizabeth Sandifer
    July 15, 2014 @ 7:52 am

    I think part of what's so strong about Moore's catering to artists is that he is capable of doing so subtly. There's an interview I've read in recent memory for the Swamp Thing chapter where he points out how awful it would be if Bissette and Totleben drew Watchmen and Gibbons drew Swamp Thing, and it's a sound point – each of those works are immaculately crafted to the strengths of their artists, not in a flashy and over the top way, but in a way that goes to the core of what the books are.

    Although the most flagrant example is surely watching Moore realize that he has one of the best artists of his career on his silly Wonder Woman spoof, and that he might want to up his own game a bit and give J.H. Williams the book he deserves.

    Reply

  7. Anton B
    July 15, 2014 @ 8:55 am

    And then, until they dropped the letters page, have to suffer the complaints from fans of silly Wonder Woman spoofs that they didn't want to shell out nearly three bucks an issue for beautifully drawn lessons in tantric sex magic and tarot workshops.

    Reply

  8. encyclops
    July 15, 2014 @ 9:31 am

    I've always been curious about this exact transition but never knew much about it before. Terrific discussion — thanks!

    Reply

  9. Ben
    July 15, 2014 @ 2:37 pm

    I have to confess that I never knew about the existence of "Loose Ends." I always thought that "The Anatomy Lesson" was Moore's first Swamp Thing story. There's a good reason for it to be considered the landmark, as Phil will no doubt get to in the next Albion entry, but I'm glad the earlier issue has surfaced.

    Interestingly enough even though Moore and Tom Yeates never worked together on Swamp Thing, they would be associated later on. Yeates was one of the artists on Brought to Light, the graphic novel/exposé cowritten by Moore and Joyce Brabner.

    Reply

  10. Kit
    July 15, 2014 @ 11:06 pm

    Worth noting that Rick Veitch ghost-pencilled much of #21 due to this pressure, too (not to mention various others in Bissette's tenure; the two had been frequent collaborators for years, and co-painted pages at times). Many faces and postures are clearly Veitch's, and the first DC trade paperback even credits him for specific issues.

    (They refused to do so on the second one, out of alleged spite over the #88 and health-care issues.)

    Reply

  11. timber-munki
    July 16, 2014 @ 8:58 am

    Yep, just like in Milligan & Allred's re-launch of X-Force one of the many joys of it was the letter pages of the ealry issues with apoplectic fans of the previous version of the title denouncing the very abrupt change in pretty much everything about the comi except it's title.

    Reply

  12. Ben
    July 16, 2014 @ 3:05 pm

    Yeah, that's a perversely fun thing about Milligan's career. Pretty much any time he steps into an existing property he catches heat from the existing fans. Sometimes the companies involved judge his take to be a success and sometimes not, but one way or another he's remembered.

    Reply

  13. Robot Devil
    July 17, 2014 @ 9:14 pm

    Thanks for spoiling the end of Don't Look Now, Phil and Alan Moore. That ending was a shock when I first saw the movie

    Reply

  14. Daru
    February 18, 2015 @ 11:08 pm

    I'll be honest like some people above that I knew nothing at all about these transitional stories, as I first got into Swamp Thing with trade paperbacks further down the road, but I'll explain later how I got into it.

    Truly amazing is what I think when I see the artworks of Totleben and Bissette – fig.391 is wonderful. The paperbacks I read were in black and white (up to the end of American Gothic I think?) so I have actually never seen a lot of these pages in colour, which is a real revelation in reading these posts.

    Reply

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