Performing Form and Playing in Print: Comics in Oxford’s Other Paper

5 february

Speaker: Maggie Gray (Kingston University)

One of Alan Moore’s earliest comics, ‘St Pancras Panda’ (1978-9), appeared in Oxford community paper the Backstreet Bugle. Renowned as a scriptwriter, Moore started off as a cartoonist, and with this strip consolidated not only the acute social satire and genre iconoclasm that would characterise his writing, but a ludic and performative graphic style, refracting a countercultural aesthetics that bridged the underground and alternative press. This paper will explore the politics of Moore’s playful, self-reflexive cartooning by attending to the relationship between the strip and the paper it was printed in, in terms of outlook, visual design and material production.