The Courtyard (Alan Moore’s…)

 COAM   (Avatar, 2003)

© 2003 Avatar Press Inc.

Moore’s tale of horror, told in the Lovecraftian mode, falls a bit short of his usual high standards. It would be easy to lay the blame on Johnston — he’s the writer who adapted Moore’s story to the comics page for this two-issue mini-series. But it’s not his fault. Moore wanted to tell a tale in the Lovecraft tradition, but setting it in the near-future (Moore’s choice, not Johnston’s), instead of the Lovecraft era, feels like a mistake.

Instead of an atmosphere of wonder and dread, more time is spent wallowing in a scene of squalor and urban decay. It’s here that the hero, an FBI agent investigating a seemingly unconnected set of ritualistic slayings, is introduced. His search leads him to a band whose hideous otherworldly lyrics might be inspiring the killer. Or it may just seem that way until he finds himself face to face with some good old Cthulhu-type gods.

This first issue feels more like Garth Ennis on one of his more disgusting days, going for shock value and not for the sophisticated suspense that is still Moore’s hallmark. The second (and final) issue may improve things.

— Stephen C. George

Jump to issue:
  NotesWriterArtist

#1 Variation A

  1/1/2003
  $3.50
  $3.00
1 copy available for $3.75
 Alan MooreJacen Burrows

#1 Variation B

  1/1/2003
  $3.95
  $2.75
No copies available
Wraparound coverAlan MooreJacen Burrows

#1 Variation C

  1/1/2003
  $3.50
  $3.50
No copies available
Autographed coverAlan MooreJacen Burrows

#1 Variation D

 
  $2.30
  $2.30
No copies available
Signed edition; Sold as incentive for Neonomicon trades; ca. 2011Alan MooreJacen Burrows

#2 Variation A

  2/1/2003
  $3.50
  $3.50
No copies available
 Alan MooreJacen Burrows

#2 Variation B

  2/1/2003
  $3.95
  $15.00
1 copy available for $14.99
Wraparound coverAlan MooreJacen Burrows

Book #1

  1/1/2004
  $6.95
  $2.25
No copies available
Collects #1 & 2; Introduction by Garth Ennis; Credits list Antony Johnston for Sequential AdaptionAlan Moore, Antony Johnston, Garth EnnisJacen Burrows

Book #1 (2nd printing)

  2/1/2009
  $7.99
  $12.00
No copies available
Collects #1 & 2; Introduction by Warren Ellis; Credits list Antony Johnston for Sequential AdaptionAlan Moore, Garth Ennis, Antony JohnstonJacen Burrows