So Frank Miller's adaptations > Alan Moore's adaptations?

Smithnikov_v1legacy

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You do know thats a joke right, there are some comics Linkara says he enjoys from Frank Millar
Robocop vs Terminator, Miller's run on Daredevil, and he even says that Dark Knight Returns still holds up for him.

But hey, he expressed a left wing opinion, so by internet law, the SJW scarlet letter is gonna stick to him regardless.
 

bastardofmelbourne

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Fox12 said:
I politely disagree.

People say that Miller lost his mojo. I don't think he ever had it to begin with. My main, real issue with Miller is that his themes and ideas are very shallow. He touches on philosophical ideas, be he never scratches below the service. In TDKR, for instance, a news anchor brings up the issue of civil liberties, and whether it's ethical for Batman to be a vigilante. That was a really interesting question, and I was curious to see how Miller would flesh it out. Only he didn't. His response seemed to be "because he's Batman. Of course he's right." The whole book was like that. He didn't adequately explore any of his ideas. He seemed to suggest that Batman was rather mentally unbalanced at the beginning, but that thread is never followed. He seems to question whether Batman should kill or not, but he doesn't really go into any depth. I thought, for a moment, that Batman was a sort of parody of over violent superheroes, but then I realized he was being played seriously. Miller touched on a lot of important issues, but he never fleshed them out.

Compare that to Moore's Watchmen. We get a real in depth look at how deranged a person has to be to dress up and fight crime. Rorschach is mentally damaged, ozzy is obsessed with his legacy, Hooded Justice was a masochist... none of them were really doing it for anyone else. They made the world worse. Is it good to be a masked vigilante? Of course not. We even see this in V for Vendetta. Alternatively, look at Moore's exploration of the ubermansch. There are at least three in Watchmen. We have Rorschach, who forms his sense of morality, Ozzy, who represents a kind of ideal man, and Dr. Manhatten, who has evolved past our concept of right and wrong. They're all Nietzsche's "superman," and yet their all different. There's also the obvious pun of philosophical "supermen" who are also literal supermen. Moore's ideas are like a complex web, and they're thoroughly explored. I just don't get that from Miller.
I guess that amounts to a personal preference for philosophically-inclined comic books. Which isn't a bad thing; if someone asked me to pick a comic book for philosophy buffs, nothing by Frank Miller would be on the list. It's not what he's known for.

What I find, however, is that Miller's failure to explore contentious issues raised by his narrative doesn't actually detract from the quality of the narrative. Or, at least, it doesn't do it to a noticeable degree. The Dark Knight Returns is, essentially, "retired Batman gets back in the game," and it never gets more complex than that. It's a really good Batman comic because it's a really good examination of (and expansion of) Batman's character and that of his rogue's gallery. It doesn't answer fundamental questions about the efficacy of vigilante justice in stopping crime, but I don't think it needs to in order to be a good comic book.

In fact, while writing this I thought of one of my favourite Alan Moore comics; Tom Strong. In case you've never read it, it's an entertaining reconstruction of the pulp fiction science hero archetype popular in the 1930s. It has a talking gorilla, a steam-powered robot butler, a UFO that can fly to a mirror Earth on the other side of the galaxy, and a trans-dimensional high-tech Aztec empire. I kind of loved it; it was endearing and colourful and smart without seeming pretentious. It's also almost completely free of anything resembling philosophical inquiry; a few issues raise interesting ethical questions, but nothing substantial. It's not a high-brow comic. Considering this came from Alan "I literally put essays between the chapters of my comic books" Moore, it was kind of a delightful surprise. I'd say the same of his Top Ten series from the same rough time period, but I didn't like it quite as much.

I figure the statement that I'm rambling towards is, essentially, that comic books and comic book writers don't have to answer Serious Philosophical Questions (TM) in order to be good comic books/comic book writers. Just like everything else, really; none of the Avengers films have raised any questions smarter than "is it okay to spy on people in the name of national security oh wait they were all Nazis, I guess it's bad." They're still good films. TDKR has the subtlety of a brick in a sock; I don't think that makes it a bad comic. It doesn't ask complex questions about violence and retributive justice and mental health. It asks "Hey, what if Batman retired and got old and then had to get back into crime-fighting?" Then it answers that question. That's enough for me, really.
 

GrumbleGrump

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Silvanus said:
Well, in part, he's on the money. Alan Moore's most notable works are exceptionally complex, both in content and style, and make extensive use of devices only truly possible on the page (the clearest example would be the pulp fiction-style pirate story which intersperses Watchmen, but there are subtler examples throughout). As for Frank Miller's work, 300 is ultimately a very simple story done in a memorable visual style, which is much easier to transpose to film. His Batman work and Sin City are somewhat more complex, but not to the extent of Watchmen or V for Vendetta.
Agreed. Most of what Moore writes is very complex. The simplest I've read of him is Whatever Happened To The Man Of Tomorrow. Miller tends to focus on a more stylish presentation, which is why his works translate better to movies. Although, I prefer the movies based on his stuff, since he tends to overburden his comics with dialog (I can't get through DKR, but I can read through the entirety of Watchmen without any problems).
 

Zhukov

The Laughing Arsehole
Dec 29, 2009
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Samtemdo8 said:
Zhukov said:
Simple stories are easier to adapt and shit stories are easier to improve.

Ta-dah!
Yeah, pretty much.

Granted, I'm simplifiying it. Mostly because being a pithy smartarse is significantly more fun than getting into lengthly arguments about comics.
 

Sonicron

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Mar 11, 2009
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Well, I just re-watched the Dark Knight Returns adaptation, and I was blown away. By contrast, the Killing Joke adaptation I watched two days ago just didn't work that well. Not a very bad film, to be sure, but there was so much stuff there that was either superfluous, badly explained (or not explained at all, so newcomers would get the wrong idea in many instances) or just didn't have the same impact it had on me when I read the comic book.
I'd say the question of how well a piece of literary work translates to film needs to be answered case-by-case. Some things maybe just work better on paper, especially those that rely on the reader's imagination to fill in the blanks.
 

Fox12

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Jun 6, 2013
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bastardofmelbourne said:
Fox12 said:
I politely disagree.

People say that Miller lost his mojo. I don't think he ever had it to begin with. My main, real issue with Miller is that his themes and ideas are very shallow. He touches on philosophical ideas, be he never scratches below the service. In TDKR, for instance, a news anchor brings up the issue of civil liberties, and whether it's ethical for Batman to be a vigilante. That was a really interesting question, and I was curious to see how Miller would flesh it out. Only he didn't. His response seemed to be "because he's Batman. Of course he's right." The whole book was like that. He didn't adequately explore any of his ideas. He seemed to suggest that Batman was rather mentally unbalanced at the beginning, but that thread is never followed. He seems to question whether Batman should kill or not, but he doesn't really go into any depth. I thought, for a moment, that Batman was a sort of parody of over violent superheroes, but then I realized he was being played seriously. Miller touched on a lot of important issues, but he never fleshed them out.

Compare that to Moore's Watchmen. We get a real in depth look at how deranged a person has to be to dress up and fight crime. Rorschach is mentally damaged, ozzy is obsessed with his legacy, Hooded Justice was a masochist... none of them were really doing it for anyone else. They made the world worse. Is it good to be a masked vigilante? Of course not. We even see this in V for Vendetta. Alternatively, look at Moore's exploration of the ubermansch. There are at least three in Watchmen. We have Rorschach, who forms his sense of morality, Ozzy, who represents a kind of ideal man, and Dr. Manhatten, who has evolved past our concept of right and wrong. They're all Nietzsche's "superman," and yet their all different. There's also the obvious pun of philosophical "supermen" who are also literal supermen. Moore's ideas are like a complex web, and they're thoroughly explored. I just don't get that from Miller.
I guess that amounts to a personal preference for philosophically-inclined comic books. Which isn't a bad thing; if someone asked me to pick a comic book for philosophy buffs, nothing by Frank Miller would be on the list. It's not what he's known for.

What I find, however, is that Miller's failure to explore contentious issues raised by his narrative doesn't actually detract from the quality of the narrative. Or, at least, it doesn't do it to a noticeable degree. The Dark Knight Returns is, essentially, "retired Batman gets back in the game," and it never gets more complex than that. It's a really good Batman comic because it's a really good examination of (and expansion of) Batman's character and that of his rogue's gallery. It doesn't answer fundamental questions about the efficacy of vigilante justice in stopping crime, but I don't think it needs to in order to be a good comic book.

In fact, while writing this I thought of one of my favourite Alan Moore comics; Tom Strong. In case you've never read it, it's an entertaining reconstruction of the pulp fiction science hero archetype popular in the 1930s. It has a talking gorilla, a steam-powered robot butler, a UFO that can fly to a mirror Earth on the other side of the galaxy, and a trans-dimensional high-tech Aztec empire. I kind of loved it; it was endearing and colourful and smart without seeming pretentious. It's also almost completely free of anything resembling philosophical inquiry; a few issues raise interesting ethical questions, but nothing substantial. It's not a high-brow comic. Considering this came from Alan "I literally put essays between the chapters of my comic books" Moore, it was kind of a delightful surprise. I'd say the same of his Top Ten series from the same rough time period, but I didn't like it quite as much.

I figure the statement that I'm rambling towards is, essentially, that comic books and comic book writers don't have to answer Serious Philosophical Questions (TM) in order to be good comic books/comic book writers. Just like everything else, really; none of the Avengers films have raised any questions smarter than "is it okay to spy on people in the name of national security oh wait they were all Nazis, I guess it's bad." They're still good films. TDKR has the subtlety of a brick in a sock; I don't think that makes it a bad comic. It doesn't ask complex questions about violence and retributive justice and mental health. It asks "Hey, what if Batman retired and got old and then had to get back into crime-fighting?" Then it answers that question. That's enough for me, really.
Can't argue with that. Enjoyment is largely subjective, so people can enjoy whatever they like. Perhaps Miller just isn't my cup of tea. I prefer Watchmen, and Sandman, and Berserk. Maybe that says something about me. There's nothing wrong with a good story well told, though, and there's no denying that Millers got style.
 

CaptainMarvelous

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... man, Miller has written one storyline that I personally rank as awesome and it's Born Again.
Minus the fact that Karen had to become a Mexican pornstar because Frank Miller CAN NOT write women to save his life.
Everything else is on the same tier as Brian Azarello, it's GOOD but I wouldn't seek them out. Still don't understand why everyone jizzes over DKR.

But OT; Moore's adaptions are usually pretty poor because he crams a whole storyline's worth of ideas into a single issue. His run on Swamp Thing is a pretty good example of that, if you haven't read it OP you really should take a look.

To my mind, it's like packing a suitcase.

With Miller, there's a few golden bits in a cloth with shit stains on it. If you trim the crap stained parts off, it both fits and retains the gold bits easily.

Moore's is a golden cloth that could serve as a parachute, you have to butcher the SHIT out of it to make it fit into that suitcase until it's unrecognisable. Hence, V for Vendetta.
 

Lupine

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inu-kun said:
PapaGreg096 said:
You do know thats a joke right, there are some comics Linkara says he enjoys from Frank Millar
Maybe in the start, but the last Linkara videos about him were just plain hateful to the point I can't see them as jokes.
Not to be that guy, but that's more your problem than it is a problem with the critic. In fact it tends to be pretty obvious that Linkara does what the NC does and pushes the envelop of his character's emotional investment and dismay at things into a cartoonish level. I mean the man has a reoccurring Frank Miller has to fetishize everything joke complete with the clip from "The Spirit" with crazy incesty dialogue about the city.

Also I'd point out that if Frank Miller wouldn't say racially charged things kinda ad nauseam, maybe the racist joke would fall out of use? The sexist joke...probably not till he gets better at writing female characters and relies less on eye candy.

As for staying on topic, I say that the initial posts got this one in one. Even if they were downplaying Miller's work a bit. Alan Moore goes for more complex and media specific storytelling methods and Frank Miller tends to go for interesting visuals and gritty themes. One of those is obviously much more easily recreated in a film.
 

stroopwafel

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Apr 29, 2020
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I'm shocked by that picture of Frank Miller. Didn't know he was so sick. I really hope he's going to make it.

Anyways from Alan Moore I only (really) enjoyed The Killing Joke but from Miller I enjoyed a whole lot more. The Dark Knight Returns, Year One, Daredevil. There is a distinct style in Miller's work I really like. Moore has always been some incrompehensible long-bearded wizard for me. The Killing Joke however is a seminal Batman story and one of the greatest classics in the history of the character and the lore.

I have the same thing with some other creators as well though. For example I love Clive Barker's The Hellbound Heart and the original Hellraiser movie he co-directed but I could never really get into any of his other work. You like what you like, it can't be helped. :p