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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Monsters, Maniacs, and Moore is a 1987 BBC documentary about "comics messiah" Alan Moore, including a running Q&A sequence in which Moore fields hostile questions from himself. Be sure and stay tuned for the collision of nuclearity, utopia, madness, and apocalypse in Part 4.

One of the things that hangs over everybody is the nuclear issue. For the first time, there is a strong possibility of everybody dying on the same day. And, I think, that it's not stressing the point too far to say that if every concept you ever loved, if every ideal you ever cherished, every person, every institution, could be completely leveled and wiped away as if it had never been within the next four minutes—then what wouldn't you do?

When you see the whole world geared up for that sort of act of mass destruction, then a Charles Manson, or a Richard Speck, or a Yorkshire Ripper becomes the merest bumbling out.

It doesn't even matter whether we ever fire these missiles or not, they are having their effect upon us now, because there are a generation growing up who cannot see beyond the final exclamation mark of a mushroom crowd, there are a generation who can see no moral values that do not end in a crackling crater somewhere.

I'm not saying that nuclear bombs are at the root of all of it—but I think that it's very very na├»ve to assume that you can expose the entire population of the world to the threat of being turned to cinders without them starting to act perhaps a little oddly. And during the course of writing [Watchmen] I found myself thinking, if that's true, if I could be gone, completely gone, within the next two minutes, then I wanted to be very very sure that I felt okay with myself and with the world.

I believe, in some sort of strange fashion, that the presence of the atom bomb might almost be forcing a level of human development that would not have occurred without the presence of the atom bomb. Maybe this degree of terror will force changes in human attitudes that could not have occurred without the presence of these awful, destructive things. Perhaps we are faced with a race between the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse in one line and the Seventh Calvary in the other. We have no got an awful lot of mid-ground between Utopia and apocalypse. And if, somehow, our children ever see the day in which it is announced that we do not have these weapons anymore, that we can no longer destroy ourselves and that we have got to come up with something else to do with our time, they will have the right to throw up their arms and let down the streamers and let out a resounding cheer.

Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

(via Cyn-C)