The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen Volume II finds cocreators Alan Moore (writer) and Kevin O'Neill (artist) back on familiar ground, revisiting the classic Victorian-era characters that they used to such effect in the bestselling and rightfully acclaimed first volume. It's a superhero tale, but--as expected from Moore--a rather unconventional one. This League is drawn from some of the classic characters from English literature: Alan Quatermain, Captain Nemo, Hawley Griffin (the Invisible Man), Mr Hyde and Miss Mina Murray (formerly Harker, the heroine of Dracula). And this tale is taken directly from HG Wells' classic War of the Worlds, as Martian invaders (complete with tripods and heat rays) begin to land in England, bent on conquest. They seem unstoppable as they rage across the countryside towards London, but they hadn't counted on the League, or the eccentric genius of Dr Alphonse Moreau.
As with the first League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, it's the meticulous sense of era and place that makes volume II a success. The minutia of Victorian England is set seamlessly alongside objects and ideas that never appeared outside of myth and legend, while references to other famous fictional characters and events are casually introduced, then quickly tossed aside. And, of course, it's a ripping yarn, in the classic Boys' Own style (right down to the cliff hanger-style, end of chapter narrations). However, unlike volume I, there are several scenes that aren't suitable for all readers (particularly "those of a delicate disposition"). It's almost as if Moore and O'Neill, anticipating the heightened interest that 2003's League of Extraordinary Gentlemen film would bring, have willingly set out to shock and even alienate newer readers. So there's a fairly explicit sex scene, some rather brutal violence and, perhaps most unnerving, it's almost inevitable that no reader will ever look at Rupert the Bear in the same way again. --Robert Burrow
The second collection of one of the most beloved comics miniseries of our time is here!
This story immediately follows the events of THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN Volume I! The distinguished cast of Victorian heroes—Allan Quatermain, Mina Harker, Captain Nemo, The Invisible Man, and Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde—once again answers the call of mother England to face the most unimaginable and fearsome foes ever: invaders from Mars! As London is attacked, leaving the Thames aglow from burning husks of tenements, mass hysteria seizes the nation. But now is the time for courage, for self-sacrifice, for valor ... and for treachery!