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A Small Killing

A Small Killing back

Alan Moore & Oscar Zarate


Page 45 Review by Stephen

"Ask how many dreams we kill to keep our dreams alive..."
- 'Platinum' by Momus

Let's get the "new version" bit out of the way first. The differences I can discern from a quick glance are 1) the price - £8-50 for our last copy of the original, 2) slightly warmer colours this time round, 3) new lettering, with more condensed speech bubbles allowing you to see more of the art, 4) none of the milky effects in the flashbacks, which is a shame because I rather liked them - as if a thin veneer or translucent film had been added, and if one person's not going to be able to see the past clearly, it's this particular protagonist.

Timothy Hole should be a very happy man. He's fought long and hard to rise to the top of American advertising and now he's landed the big one, a crack at the company's best selling account. But as he looks back on the sacrifices he made to be where he is today, we can see that any sense of integrity he had - intellectual, aesthetic or moral - has either been beaten out of him or jettisoned in an act of short-term preservation. Now he's being taunted by a young schoolboy who follows him wherever he goes…

I wonder whether it was Zarate's washes of vibrant colour, or whether no one at the time wanted to read straight fiction from Alan, but if there's one of Moore's works that has been most overlooked over the years, in spite of its being freely available, it's this stern warning that the self-deception required to keep some people's heads above water may yet leave them drowning in a sea of insanity.

"You really want to kill me? But... why?"
"You killed me first."