Alan Moore Still Knows the Score!

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Which comedies do you like watching?
ALAN MOORE:
Well, over here, at the moment, we've had some very good ones. There's The Mighty Boosh, which is [Laughs] idiotically wonderful, childish, surreal, fantasy. There's also a show called Snuffbox, and it's one of the darkest, funniest comedies I've seen in ages. And I'm a very big fan of South Park.

Have you seen the ''Trapped in the Closet'' episode?
[Sings] ''I'm trapped in the closet!'' Yeah, that was terrific. I thought the way that South Park handled that bit with the Scientologists was wonderful. I was also quite heartened the other day when watching the news to see that there were demonstrations outside the Scientology headquarters over here, and that they suddenly flashed to a clip showing all these demonstrators wearing V for Vendetta [Guy Fawkes] masks. That pleased me. That gave me a warm little glow.

Are you still practicing magic?
Well, yes, practice makes perfect.

How did you first get into it?
I was turning 40 and thinking, Oh dear, I'm probably going to have one of those midlife crisis things which always just bore the hell out of everybody. So it would probably be better if, rather than just having a midlife crisis, I just went completely screaming mad and declared myself to be a magician. That would, at least, be more colorful. So, I announced, on the night of my 40th birthday party — probably after more beers than I should have had — that, ''from this point on, I'm going to become a magician.'' And then the next morning you have to think, Oh, what have I said now? Are we going to have to go through with this? So I had to go about finding out what a magician was and what they did.

What is the end result of practicing magic? Is it a type of spirituality?
The mystics all seem to want to go straight to the Godhead; the magicians tend to be more curious. They want to explore all of the other aspects of the universe. For me, there is very little difference between magic and art. To me, the ultimate act of magic is to create something from nothing: It's like when the stage magician pulls the rabbit from the hat. And then you can turn that idea into a film, a book, a painting, a piece of music, something that other people can experience. That in itself is stunning. And I suppose this is one of the reasons I got into magic, because I was tired of ducking that question that people always ask writers, which is, ''Where do you get your ideas from?''

San Diego Comic-Con is approaching. Have you ever attended it?
No...well, I mean, I stopped going in the late '80s. I just thought, I don't really want to do this anymore, and I don't really see why I am doing it. I did find it a bit overwhelming and creepy.

Well, you're a god there.
And this is the last way that I want to be treated. The reason that I live in Northampton is because everyone here is kind of used to me. I mean, yeah, I do get a gratifying smattering of people coming up to me in the street and thanking me for me work, and shaking me hand and just wanting to wish me well.

Although if you shaved your beard and cut your hair — no one would recognize you!
No one would recognize me.

Would you ever do that?
No, just the laziness that has enabled my beard to get to this length is not a habit that I'm going to shake now.

But it would be your greatest act of magic: ''Where did Alan Moore go!?''
Well, I saw the possibility, of course. I've always got this option. So should I need to disappear, then, if you see a sort of bald guy with a really bad shaving rash going around somewhere, then that will probably be me, yeah.

Originally posted Jul 16, 2008
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