Hang on, didn’t #11 only come out a week ago? Is Marvel actually trying to get on with things? Who knows? The most important thing is that we’ve come to a pretty crucial issue of Marvel’s reprints of the Eclipse Comics Miracleman stories as this is a huge exposition issue, but it’s never, ever boring as this issue pays off a lot of plot-threads that had been danging for those of us who’d been reading Alan Moore’s revival of Marvelman since Warrior #1. For those new readers who’ve been only reading this since Marvel’s first issue of reprints in January, you’ve had only to wait nine months as opposed to the five years between Warrior #1 and the Eclipse Comics Miracleman #12.
At the end of last issue we’d seen Miraclewoman show herself as she saved Liz Moran from the Qys who were coming for her. We quickly find out the Qys no longer want to fight as things have change which gives Miraclewoman and Miracleman a chance to swap stories.
We find out that Miraclewoman is Avril Lear, a girl who was abducted by Gargunza in 1955 for his experiments with superhumans, and promptly raped by him. It’s a shocking little detail and one which at the time only made Gargunza more horrendous, but it’s also horrendous that after creating a cloned superhuman body for Lear, Gargunza then proceeds to rape Miraclewoman when she’s sleeping and under the hypnotic control of Gargunza. It’s amazingly horrible.
Lear also reveals that Gargunza turned a bot by the name of Terrence Rebbeck into Young Nastyman, a villain of Marvelman’s as well as telling her tale which fills in all the gaps Miracleman/Mike Moran had in his own history, apart from of course meeting the race where his powers originated. Though this bit quickly happens when the Warpsmiths arrive and Miracleman is about to go on a trip a long, long way away.
It’s a great issue as there’s a real sense that Moore is pushing his story to a climax as he throws in everything he’s been holding back for years, and that the story is going to conclude with anything but a whimper. If you’ve not read this story before it does go full pelt from now and you will be looking forward to some remarkable John Totleben art in these last four Alan Moore issues. There’s loads to look forward to.
As for the rest of this issue, it’s more original art and a vaguely racist Mick Anglo Marvelman reprint which I do wonder what on earth they were thinking of digging up again. It’s really not a great package when you look beyond the Eclipse material reprinted here, but still, those pages from Moore and Totleben are wonderful, though just about worth the cover price by themselves.