Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen by Alan Moore, Kevin O'Neill, Ben Dimagmaliw and Bill Oakley

In 1898, Campion Bond has put together a team of misfits to save London from an evil Doctor. He sends out the beautiful and secretive Mina Murray and mercurial Captain Nemo to gather up Allan Quatermain the legendary opiate-addicted hunter, the psychopathic invisible Hawley Griffin, and the nervous and monstrous Dr. Henry Jekyll/Mr. Edward Hyde. They create the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. As they try and learn to cope with one another they must also try and understand what the true motivation of Bond and their mysterious benefactor M is.

I really enjoyed this book. An interesting premise, gathering notorious literary characters and putting their abilities together, followed up with the equally intriguing idea of putting them in famous plot lines (volume two takes place during War of the Worlds). I found the artwork to be quite beautiful and the attention to details lovely.

Enough of the accolades. While overall an awesome book there are some issues, I had a hard time with how they dealt with women. I don't have an issue with Mina Murray being the only leading woman, but she's constantly being attacked and cannot save herself. Isn't she supposed to have some special abilities? Why can't she defend herself? All other victims are either men who are violently killed or women that are sexually assaulted or killed. Doesn't seem quite right, does it?

Anyway, I liked the book, will read the rest of the series, will try and cope with the underlying misogyny.

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