Archive | April 2, 2008

How Swamp Thing Got His Groove Back

Swamp Thing was always a much-better-than-average comic book. But it didn’t become a great comic book until Alan Moore (of Watchmen andSwamp Thing V for Vendetta fame) started writing it, in a classic 45-issue run that revolutionised the comics industry and, inter alia, directly laid the foundations for a still more celebrated work, Neil Gaiman’s Sandman.

In this video, Moore explains some of the reasoning that led him to take Swamp Thing in a new direction (with a fairly obvious ethico-political subtext – Moore is an anarchist, after all). In most genre fiction, Moore notes, “transformation is seen as horror, change is seen as a source of horror, and the status quo is seen as source of comfort and stability.” Hence prior to Moore’s run the scientist-turned-monster protagonist spent a lot of time shambling around “bound by fungus and feeling sorry for himself … like Hamlet covered in snot,” whereas Moore decided to have Swamp Thing embrace his new status, “exploring the possibilities of change and transformation, trying to show it as a positive thing.”

Phantoms of Lost Liberty, Part 3

The Libertarian Nation Foundation website at has been having the following problem:

Libertarian Nation Foundation 1. For some people, it worked if you didn’t put www in front of the address but not if you did.
2. For others, it didn’t work at all, with or without www.
3. For still others, it worked fine, again with or without www.

I guess (3) wasn’t really a problem, except insofar as it prevented those who, like me, were in group (3) from realising that there was a problem.

In any case, mighty webmaster Wayne Dawson thinks he’s fixed it. But he was in group (1) while I was in group (3), so it’s hard for us to tell whether problem (2) was fixed. Therefore: if you were previously in group (2), would you do me the favour of checking out the link, both with and without the www, and letting me know whether it works? Muchas gracias!

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