Experimental, electronical, experiential elective reading
Alan Moore’s comics career is noted for his experimentation with the form, but his latest endeavour could be the most ambitious yet. The newly launched Electricomics sees Moore team-up with creators from around the world for a project that aims to redefine what comics are in the 21st century.
Available now on iTunes — and for free, no less — the anthology features four experimental tales in one app. The word “app” does it a disservice though, as the final product blends influences from traditional comics, animation, games, and film into something that almost defies categorisation.
While digital comics have been around for years now, only a few publishers have tried to evolve the medium beyond the same experience you get on the printed page. Marvel’s Infinite Comics format comes closest to something new, swiping through panels optimised for screen reading, but even they are designed to later be added to print editions.
With Electricomics, each strip uses the technology inherent in tablets to manipulate the reader’s experience. Alan Moore’s Big Nemo, an update of Winsor McCay’s classic newspaper strips with art by Colleen Doran, has characters moving through the panels, each step taken with a tap of the screen. Leah Moore and John Reppion’s Sway, drawn by Nicola Scott, plays with time travel, readers tilting their tablets back and forth to jump through different eras and follow the non-linear tale.
Peter Hogan and Paul Davidson’s Second Sight meanwhile borrows from point and click adventure games, with key points on each page that can be interacted with, changing the flow of the story. Finally, Garth Ennis and Frank Victoria’s Red Horse abandons conventional page layouts for an endlessly scrolling narrative.
Rounding out the creative team are José Villarubia providing colour art throughout, and letterers Simon Bowland and Erica Schultz bringing the words to life. Andy Bloor is credited for design — an unusual role on a comic, but one that speaks of the uncharted territory that Electricomics is exploring.
“With a lot of my comics work, I’ve been trying to come up with the most imaginative use of what comics could do and be,” Alan Moore tells WIRED.co.uk. “The same applies with this. It’s something new and I’m trying to think of the most useful and imaginative way to apply this new technology.”
While the project is, currently, a standalone issue, the Electricomics website will soon have a creation tool, allowing aspiring creators to experiment with the technology and produce their own strips that play with the comics form.
“The website [has] an open source sample comic on it, which demonstrates how you make your own Electricomic,” Leah Moore tells WIRED.co.uk. “There’s a creator tool so you can upload your own art and make your own comic that other people can read. We’re hoping that side of it takes off, that people enjoy using the creator tool and being able to read and share their comics in that way.”
Follow WIRED.co.uk for our exclusive full length interviews with Alan Moore and Leah Moore on the creation and future of Electricomics.
This entry passed through the Full-Text RSS service – if this is your content and you’re reading it on someone else’s site, please read the FAQ at fivefilters.org/content-only/faq.php#publishers.