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Round, Julia: "Reconstructing Alice Cooper. ‘From the Inside’ to The Last Temptation." In: Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics 1 (2010), S. 151–169.
|Resource type: Journal Article
BibTeX citation key: Round2010h
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Keywords: "The Last Temptation", Comic-Biographie, Gaiman. Neil, Großbritannien, Musik, Narratologie, Zulli. Michael
Collection: Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics
This article analyzes the representations of rock singer Alice Cooper in comics, focusing on his debut in ‘From the Inside’ (Marvel Premiere #50, 1979) and the three-part miniseries The Last Temptation by Neil Gaiman and Michael Zulli (Marvel Comics, 1994–1995; Dark Horse Comics, 2000), alongside his albums of the same names. After offering a brief background of rock music and comics, the article analyzes Cooper’s representation in ‘From the Inside’: arguing that, rather than using the medium to offer a thematically consistent depiction, this comic subsumes Alice Cooper’s persona into its idiosyncratic style. It proceeds to contrast this with Gaiman and Zulli’s interpretation, arguing that The Last Temptation instead privileges the performative elements of Cooper’s character, which is created through aesthetic excess (makeup, clothing and exotic stage props) and subversion (of gendering, authority and naturalism). It then analyzes the different strategies Gaiman and Zulli use to convey Alice Cooper, with particular reference to the comics medium’s narrative conventions: including iconography, intertextuality and retroactive continuity. It also considers the use made of the medium’s essential narratological features: such as its creation of the hyperreal, an ‘aesthetic of excess’ and reliance on reader involvement. It concludes that The Last Temptation demonstrates an ambitious use of its medium’s conventions in order to represent Alice Cooper and, more generally, that comics are ideally suited to depict the type of theatricality and subversion essential to such celebrity antiheroes and rock stars.
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