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on 12 July 2012
The latest chapter in the LOEG is a rather bitter one. It seems Moore and O'Neil have used the contemporary time-frame as a vehicle to vent their anger and frustration at the near-barren landscape of fiction and popular culture of modern times. The narrative is a lot stronger than the previous two Century books, there is less time wasted on exposition and referencing off-page characters. The story is incredibly bleak, even more-so than the previous two books. I don't want to go into the details of the plot for fear of ruining the experience for people, but let's just say Harry Potter fans will find a lot to be disturbed and frightened about.
The characterization is good in this one. I finally feel like I know Orlando and understand what makes him/her tick, he/she's a lot less irritating this time round and strangely likeable despite the fact she does something atrocious in the opening pages. One problem I have with this book, it seems at times to be a scathing attack on the young people of today. Perhaps I am totally misunderstanding the intention but, it seems the main antagonist is symbolic of modern youth, and isn't portrayed in a flattering way at all. This book also gives the impression that Moore despises Harry Potter, which is a bit baffling to me, they're not exactly Shakespeare but I don't see anything inherently evil or amoral about the Harry Potter series, especially since it has undoubtedly encouraged a lot of children to read.

Kevin O'Neil's artwork is incredible as always!
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Third and final volume in the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Century series of graphic novels.

This is a not a good jumping on point and anyone who hasn't read anything League of Extraordinary Gentlemen related before should instead start with The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. Be advised that graphic content only really makes it suitable for those aged eighteen and over.

For those who have come all the way with the series, read on:

This volume continues on from where Century 1969 left off. Albeit with a big jump in time between the two. Orlando is fighting in the middle east. Although names and settings are different to those in our world because this is a different one, certain things are familiar. And then returns to Britain. As with previous volumes the panels are crowded with characters from fiction and various references to it also.

Orlando is then tasked with getting back to the mission of stopping the anti-christ. But with former comrades long lost, can the team get back together? And can the day be saved?

There's also another chapter at the end in text form of the story that was running that way in parts one and two of century.

This adopts the style of previous volumes once again, and as ever there's a lot of incidental delight along the way. But the main characters are all ones we've seen before, and there are no new heroes from this era. Which may be down to copyright reasons or plot points. But that does feel a bit disappointing.

The setting is very modernday and it makes points about modern life and the recession well enough. But the whole resolution to the main plotline may divide the readership. You may either find it perfunctory and something that comes out of nowhere, or else a pretty clever comment on certain things.

There is a wrap up for the characters after that. Which states that it's the end of a volume. It doesn't feel like the end of the league story as a whole, and yet this would seem to be the last comic Alan Moore will ever write, so an ending it is. How satisfactory that feels will again be a matter of opinion.

There are probably lots of clever allusions to things about modern day Britain and the power of fiction and creativity in here. But the reader will draw their own conclusions or find their own things in that way. Which may or may not be the point.

An end to Century. And one that isn't quite as good as the two previous volumes. But if you've come all this way with it then you need to read it regardless.
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on 19 June 2012
Okay, spoilers away.

The overall feel of Century 2009 is a grotesque cultural satire clearly in the tradition of Jonathon Swift & George Orwell. Few read Swift or Orwell and comment on the character development, it's about the transcendent ideas. Century 2009 is a masterfully constructed, near peerlessly clued-up lampoon of modern culture & (lack of) social justice, it's certainly not traditional comicbook superhero stuff, so perhaps that's why the split in comicbook fans is drawn.

It's already been pointed out that there's so much in it; there's a barbed comment which is connected to a counterterrorism unit (24 Jack Bauer) claiming it can end the recession in 24 hours - poking at the largely American sense of invulnerability & that the recession is another baddie who can be taken down in a superheroic way. Orlando carrying a TESCO bag with the corp logo "we control every aspect of your life". There are references to Andy Millman & Celebrity Rape an Ape from Iannucci's Time Trumpet which focussed on ridiculous aspects of pop culture & the cruelty of reality TV. More reality leakage between the argument between Snow & Tucker mirroring the argument between Snow & Campbell about the validity of information provided to "prove" war was necessary... it's a meticulously constructed satire about culture and the context of the time up to the year 2009, not least how it has impacted on creativity.

Having said it's not traditional superhero stuff... there's a nod to that, even though the ultimate evil really didn't turn out as the mastermind Haddo (Maugham's book the Magician Haddo being a spoof on Crowley) had envisioned, all that is bad is contained within the birth of the antichrist child & Allan gets to shoot lumps out of it (even though it kills him), just like a regular superhero sacrifice. But it's not necessarily Potter, it's been pointed out that all the references equally apply to elements of the Seeker, the Dark is Rising, the Worst Witch & Timothy Hunter, all of them created before Potter.

There's no requirement that everybody will get it (with clear emphasis on Brit culture much of it will miss many outside the UK) or even like it if they do, but it's some of the most brilliant and intelligent stuff that's appeared in comicbook form.

Oh yes... and add to that the rather gifted Kev O'Neill continuing to compliment it superbly by channelling the legendary lewd styles & spirits of William Hogarth (LoEG mirroring the technique of Southwark Fair as being one of the first illustrated celebrity crowd scenes, the Rake's & Harlot's Progress tales etc), particularly James Gillray, George Cruikshank & perhaps even Gerald Scarfe. A cultural tour de force.

& for posterity it's probably worth pointing out how a little more than a month later a couple of key images/aspects of 2009 were weirdly echoed in a couple of Danny Boyle's references during the London 2012 Olympic opening ceremony.
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on 27 June 2012
When I first read this I thought it was a bit of an anti-climax, a bit meh. Then again there are a lot of things you have to see twice in order to swallow everything, LOEG 2009 is certainly one of them. On second reading I loved it.

The previous two installments had a problem with balancing between references to fiction and the actual plot. This one is a perfect balance between the two and as people have pointed out it's also pointing out the lackluster imagination of our present day. The plot is a solid adventure, while not as There aren't many characters who haven't already been seen earlier, i.e.Dr who, James Bond etc and this reflects our the fictional world of franchises, sequels, reboots. As such while the comic reveals our current fictional landscape, it also asks us to think how characters from the early periods (victorian, 1940's) would fare in the modern era. In that sense the story has a 'return to oz' feel, showing a world once teeming with imagination, now devoid of it.

The artwork (while not as phychadelic as in the last two issues) is notched up and is especially imaginative in the epic conclusion. This is also triumph because of the bleak apathetic imagination sense.

I recommend

1. League of extraordinary gentlemen volume 2
2. League of extraordinary gentlemen volume 1
3. Century 2009
4. Century 1969
5. Black Dossier
6. Century 1910
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VINE VOICEon 22 June 2012
The "Century" books have moved in a downwards spiral, perhaps reflecting Moore's own disillusionment with the notion of the Boy's Own adventure hero as portrayed in the world of comics, books and the media...or maybe it's something else? Maybe Moore is looking at how storytelling itself has been corrupted and turned into a moneymaking franchise operation- Moore's loathing for commercial exploitation of fantasy has never been stronger than here. It permeates every page, every panel- from the background image of Aquaman 2 (reference to the characters from TVs "Entourage")to the Antichrist being revealed as our very own bespectacled Cash-cow boy wizard.This isn't a spoiler by the way, as some in the media would have you believe- this "revelation" was made in volume two!!!
It's a dark grim look at a century where heroism is getting harder and harder, even bleaker than the first two volumes, and much less fun.
But is it any good? Well, yes it is! The art is as complex and trainspottery as before ( spotted the cast of Little England as well as Hogwarts- you can play spot the reference yourself). The script is as full of sly references, particularly to the Avengers (all girls present and correct- if a little more..er..mature) and the Bonds. I loved the linking of West Wing's president to the one from 24, and those little delights keep on coming. There is a little sex, some heroism (reluctant and not Hollywood or Marvel comics style, but heroism nonetheless). And most of all, there is endless food for thought..
Because, in the end,"Century" like all the League books, is really about storytelling and myth and how the future has corrupted tropes of adventure fiction. Moore the curmudgeon? Superficially, yes- but there's love here, and sacrifice, and decency and all those traditional virtues represented by heroic legends, mixed up with a dystopian future Britain, dark and dingy. It's 1984 meets The Man Who Was Thursday.It's bleak and depressing, but also thought-provoking,clever, and written as a passionate outcry against the buying and selling of our heritage and our dream life. The League has disintegrated, much like the world of fiction has fragmented..but there's magic here, just as there's still magic in the world of fantasy- you just have to dig deeper.
Fascinating. Powerful.
Did I enjoy it as much as the earlier volumes? No. To be honest, no. It's much darker, much less fun..
Did I appreciate it as much? More. To be honest, probably more. It's much darker, much less fun..
But a powerful conclusion to the story. Makes you want to reread them all..
And a story about storytelling itself should make you want to do that.
Not to be missed.
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on 24 August 2012
I liked this. Interesting storyline, cracking artwork, witty and quite original.
However the first two League of Extraordinary Gentleman books were a lot better and this suffers by comparison.

I often found it harder to get the cultural references in this and understand the characters in the background,

This was enjoyable but it is also a little lightweight. I would still read more comics in this series.
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on 11 August 2013
Perhaps the trilogy 1910-1969-2009 is a bit too long and convoluted but this is a good enough ending all things considered. Recommended for fans not newbies on the subject.
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on 24 December 2012
The great finale of Alan Moore's and Kevin O'Neill's journey throughout the creativity of mankind in which is explained that fictional persons are real persons.
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on 3 June 2013
Great end(?)for The League of Extraorinay Gentlemen Century Saga. Moore & O'Neill are artists wizards in the Blazing World. A must!!!!
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on 7 April 2013
after reading this you will just be excited to see where Alan Moore goes next with the francise. Very good read
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