Book Notes 12: The Last Temptation, by Neil Gaiman and Michael Zulli
The last of my three recent graphic borrowings from the library, and the one I expected to like most. But it's a bit lightweight for Gaiman's work, and for my taste.
It’s based on work that Gaiman did with Alice Cooper for a concept album that the latter released in 1994. I didn’t know that people still made concept albums, but there you go.
Also there is one theme in particular that Gaiman was to revisit in American Gods; namely that of the town where children disappear periodically. In American Gods the periodic disappearance (and murder, let’s face it) of the child acts a kind of spell, which protects a town from the encroachment of the rest of the world and the forces of modernity and ‘development’. In this work, there’s no suggestion that the children’s absorption into the ‘Theater of the Real’ brings advantage to anyone other than the the semi-mythical ‘Showman’. Gaiman was perhaps using this work to develop some of the ideas that he would return to later.
There’s nothing wrong with that, of course, but as I say, the work as a whole seems shallow and perhaps incomplete, compared to, say, The Sandman.