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      CommentAuthornorton
    • CommentTimeMar 6th 2008 edited
     (1286.1)
    This has been a reoccurring thought over the last few months. It seems more and more common that comic writers are using Lovecraft influenced ideas and creations these days. Doktor Sleepless is a obvious one and this weeks 2000ad had two stories with Great Old One-like horrors in them.

    So whilst I realise the greatness of old HP. What makes his ideas so influential to comic writers?
  1.  (1286.2)
    because comic writers tend to have good taste?
    • CommentAuthorkjelshus
    • CommentTimeMar 6th 2008
     (1286.3)
    Lovecraft reimagined the myth for modern times and the same goes for comic writers. These are our legends, fables, and folk stories. Weird Tales set it in motion and it is continued today in our graphic novels and comic books. In a thousand years people will study our yarns just as we study mythology.
  2.  (1286.4)
    I used to read lovecraft before bed. 'tis Good stuff.
  3.  (1286.5)
    I tend to think Lovecraft is great for the paranoid mood that the endless terror war has engendered. Horrifying, unknowable menaces in the shadows seem to fit in a world with secret prisons, extradition flights and religious war. You need a bigger, scarier monster than the ones we're growing, go Cthulhu.
  4.  (1286.6)
    Lovecraft was a pulp writer. Comics writers are pulp writers.
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      CommentAuthorRJBarker
    • CommentTimeMar 6th 2008
     (1286.7)
    On a similar vein, has anyone ever done anything with William Hope Hodgeson's 'Carnacki The Ghost Finder' series? They remain the only stories I genuinely can't read if I want to sleep.
    • CommentAuthordkostis
    • CommentTimeMar 6th 2008 edited
     (1286.8)
    Unlike most pulp novel series, Lovecraft's books were centered on an idea (or settimg) rather than reoccuring characters. Ideas are what fuel writers. Public domain has a little to do with it as well.
    • CommentAuthorScottS
    • CommentTimeMar 6th 2008
     (1286.9)
    He was also a pretty interesting character in his own right. I'm reading the "Selected Letters" published by Arkham House and he has some pretty interesting views.
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      CommentAuthorFauxhammer
    • CommentTimeMar 6th 2008
     (1286.10)
    "Pretty interesting views", indeed.

    "Degenerate Esquimeaux" is one of my all-time favorite ethnic slurs.
  5.  (1286.11)
    On a similar vein, has anyone ever done anything with William Hope Hodgeson's 'Carnacki The Ghost Finder' series? They remain the only stories I genuinely can't read if I want to sleep.

    You might want to read GRAVEL.
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      CommentAuthorRJBarker
    • CommentTimeMar 6th 2008
     (1286.12)
    On a similar vein, has anyone ever done anything with William Hope Hodgeson's 'Carnacki The Ghost Finder' series? They remain the only stories I genuinely can't read if I want to sleep.

    You might want to read GRAVEL.


    Thank you. my pathetically small amount of spare cash must now be stretched even further. WHH has never really had the recognition I think he deserved. I'm getting all excited thinking about neon summoning circles now.
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      CommentAuthornigredo
    • CommentTimeMar 7th 2008
     (1286.13)
    It's not just comics writers that have found his work interesting. From film to music to chaos magic to literature the Cthulhu Mythos has been variously influential. People are attracted to his work for different things anyway. It might be the monsters, the pure pulp horror of it or his explorations of the other and the alien, which have become very timely.

    Coulthard's adaptations of Lovecraft focus more on the representational aspect, while the Johnston/Burrows adaptation of Moore's THE COURTYARD give equal weight to representation and the theme of alienness. Then you have someone like Mignola who is drawn to the mythological dimensions of Lovecraft's stories and fuses everything in the Hellboy/B.P.R.D. universe. Grant Morrison, in THE INVISIBLES is more drawn to the similarities between Lovecraft and gnostic thought and incorporates the lovecraftian fundamental nihilistic otherness and unknowability of god and the universe as a stage in his concept of the supercontext.
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      CommentAuthorphee
    • CommentTimeMar 7th 2008
     (1286.14)
    IMO... I would have to agree in the "Pulp" idea... but even more so, his writing focus is so much on description of the surroundings and such, that it translates easily into a visual format.
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      CommentAuthorbjacques
    • CommentTimeMar 7th 2008
     (1286.15)
    WHH's "The House On the Borderland" was influenced, from what I gather, by Emanuel Swedenborg, who had dreams and visions of being taken bodily to heaven and hell and speaking with angels and demons. There's an M.R. James story along those lines too. The novel is an obvious inspiration for Lovecraft's "Dream-Quest Of Unknown Kadath" and related stories.

    The dark ambient group Nostalgia made a CD of music inspired by the novel, and it's at least as creepy.
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      CommentAuthorslybyron
    • CommentTimeMar 7th 2008
     (1286.16)
    @Nigredo

    The King of All Tears, the Moonchild, & the Outer Church in general in The Invisibles are definitely creatures of a Lovecraftian ilk. I think they're also evidence of Robert Anton Wilson influence, because the Illuminatus! trilogy (which is Kate Bush to the Invisibles' Tori Amos) features Yog Sothoth, Arkham, MA, & even H.P. as a minor character (if I remember correctly).

    I think the reason why Lovecraft gets used so much is that he gave writers such a convenient shorthand for otherworldly, madness-inducing terror. If you see deranged humans trying to summon their hideous monster god, then you know that's the worst possible thing that can happen. It takes about two paragraphs to set that story up, and the less you define the monster, the scarier he'll be.
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      CommentAuthorIan Mayor
    • CommentTimeMar 7th 2008
     (1286.17)
    I've always seen Hellboy as Lovecraft crudely filtered through Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.

    In a good way, obviously.
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      CommentAuthornigredo
    • CommentTimeMar 7th 2008
     (1286.18)
    @slybyron
    The King of All Tears, the Moonchild, & the Outer Church in general in The Invisibles are definitely creatures of a Lovecraftian ilk. I think they're also evidence of Robert Anton Wilson influence, because the Illuminatus! trilogy (which is Kate Bush to the Invisibles' Tori Amos) features Yog Sothoth, Arkham, MA, & even H.P. as a minor character (if I remember correctly).


    True. Besides the overt references, Morrison recognised the similarities between gnosticism and the Cthulhu Mythos. In The Invisibles, the Archons are thematised as totally alien, evil deities (mch like they appear in gnostic theology), hence the insectile (other) appearance of their human agents. They become other than human. The difference between the two views lies in that, in gnosticism, there is the lement of salvation through gnosis. The Archons can be overcome. I think that The Invisibles subvert Lovecraft's cynical, nihilistic view by positing it as an intermediary stage in human evolution.
  6.  (1286.19)
    I've always seen Hellboy as Lovecraft crudely filtered through Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.

    In a good way, obviously.


    This is very true, especially the earlier works are very Lovecraft influenced. The later stuff is more expanded to include European and Asian fables, 40s pulps mystery/horror, and big monster action. Hard to find a better combination of all those things.
  7.  (1286.20)
    but even more so, his writing focus is so much on description of the surroundings and such, that it translates easily into a visual format.

    I think so too. So much of it is about atmosphere. Shadow Over Innsmouth is one of my favorites, it's all about atmosphere and building tension sequence by sequence.

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