Doop Talking

Earlier this week, the language of the alien-looking mutant from X-Force, Doop, was translated. It appears that his language was standard english typed into a visual alphabet, namely Roswell Wreckage Font, designed by letterer Nate Piekos, and readable on – or at least it was.

When this news was revealed on the Mike Allred board, someone made a Doop Decipher Sheet, which was reposted on the X-Fan site and other places across the net.

Then the Marvel spin doctoring started up. First, the font was taken down from Blambot, then Pete Milligan, X-Force writer was drafted in by editor Axel Alonso to say, “Any such alphabet that purports to exist is to ‘Doop Speak’ what a Greek Restaurant menu is to The Iliad. The complexities and nuances of Doop Speak — understood only by an initiated few — cannot be encompassed or delineated by any one image system. Folks should “translate” at their own risk.”

However, up to issue #120, all Doop Speak does translate and even makes sense. What Marvel will do now is anyone’s guess, but for those who demand their Doopness, here is that self same Doop Decipher Sheet:

And a few examples:

Coach: Lights, Doop.
Doop: I’m on it Coach! ZOOM

Guy: Doop, get some shots of the parade. It’ll give the film something interesting to cut away to.
Doop: Hey, you’re the boss, bud.

Guy (undressing): Sorry, Doop. Can’t risk any of this footage finding its way to the National Enquirer.
Doop: Aw Gee, come on, man

Wolverine: I don’t care how long we’ve known each other, I really don’t know why you’re still hanging with these clowns!
Doop: Are you watching, pa…
Wolverine: Easy for you to say

This Has A Green Funky Floating Fella Value Of 8 Out of 10

Alan’s Contribution

So why is Alan Moore doing work for the WTC charity project for Marvel and not DC? It turns out down to a matter of content.

Alan Moore told DC that he wasn’t too happy in contributing to a superhero-charity project for this. He personally considers that it’s not very appropriate or relevant. Which is why, presumably, he’s happier to work on the Marvel project, Heroes, which features pieces about the real-life heroes of the tragedy, policemen, firemen, those that tried to make a difference on the day.

But doesn’t the Marvel project also have superheroes in it? I asked Joe Quesada about this seeming contradiction. He told me, “Some guys did super heroes although I was encouraging them against it.” And it’s a number of those we’ve seen online, Deodato’s Captain America, Frank Miller’s Cap, Keown’s Hulk…

One rumour doing the rounds was that Joe Quesada had purposely lied to Alan Moore to get a contribution from him, but both men deny this version. Quesada said, “I told him that I was hoping it would be super hero free… but then Frank, Mike and a few others handed in some Super Hero related pieces and I thought they were wonderful and personal. I also needed as many marquee names as possible! I didn’t say ‘NO HEROES’ – I was just discouraging it.”

Moore told me he understood perfectly what was required when putting a charity book like this together, and while he’d personally prefer the book to be without superheroes, that is just his personal feeling.

Marvel’s Heroes is published on October 24th. DC’s benefit project is expected shortly.

This Has A Rumour Value Of 8 Out of 10

Skinned Alive

However Alan did want to take issue with one rumour that came his way.

The most recent Comics International (featuring an abridged All The Rage and a far more striking photo of meself than the mock-scowly one above) featured a story about Moore in its Movers & Shakers rumour section.

It stated, “Obviously no longer hungry, Alan Moore continues to run late on his America’s Best Comics titles. Making serious dints in the artists’ income – they don’t get paid, those who stand and wait,” before listing recent ABC delays.

Alan seemed to resent the implication, that because he’s seen as being well off now, that he’s keeping artists waiting for scripts. He told me straight, as far as he’s aware, no artist on any of his projects is without a script.

This Has A Rumour Value of 2 Out Of 10

Missed Opportunity

I also wanted to ask Alan if Captain Nemo in League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen was, in fact, Sherlock Holmes in disguise. But I didn’t. Damn. Have to wait for the second mini-series, much of which I hear is completed…

This Has A Big Nose Value Of 7 Out of 10

Sarcastic Cow

David Wohl of Top Cow writes about last week’s low-rumoured piece about Paul Jenkins giving up on Top Cow and moving to CrossGen. Wohl writes, “Thanks for the heads up on Paul Jenkins. I didn’t know we were having problems. He sounded fine when we talked earlier today. But thanks to your article, I now realize that we had a falling out with him. Wow. Well, I’ll be sure to pick up Meridian when he becomes the regular writer on it!”


This Has A Ear-Bending Value Of 7 Out Of 10

Heroes Remembered
Last week’s column featuring a number of Marvel proposals from a studio of artists and writers caused quite a full mailbag. On the Warren Ellis Delphi forum, Mike Heisler doubted the veracity of the story – when he worked with Wildstorm on Heroes Reborn, he never heard that Glass House were in the running for, say, titles like Thor, Captain America, Fantastic Four, or Iron Man.

But another respondent to last week’s column, Glass House’s Dave Campiti, was moved to speak. He told me:

“Interesting as it was to see this history dredged up after nearly five years, it’s still a story about business between GHG and Marvel and isn’t really anyone else’s concern. It didn’t need to come out.”

“The story you reported sounds pretty accurate, though, as best I can remember from years ago. I wasn’t privvy then to Marvel editorial’s reasonings, nor am I now, though from what I’ve seen Joe Q now runs an excellent ship and we’ve certainly had no ‘bumps’ working with editors under his watch. And while Bobbie Chase was editor there, we drew Elektra, Hulk, Fantastic Four, and other books for her; she was a competent editor. In fact, early on, Sherryl Rhoades gave her our two “pitches” for a HEROES RETURN mini-series, and Bobbie called us to tell us how good and insightful they were, that we’d only missed one plot point that we couldn’t possibly know about because the set-up hadn’t appeared in print yet. When we asked if we could handle a specific rewrite, she said not to bother — Peter David (if I recall correctly) was working on the RETURN story, so those particular proposals ended there.

“Reading over the report, I can clarify some points for the sake of accuracy and completeness:

“Yeah, there were that many proposals commissioned and considered, but not everything was accepted by management. Some were just passed through to Bob and that was the last we heard [about them]. Do the math — some artists submitted for several projects, in hopes of landing one or two. Joe Bennett, I think, did samples on four of them and was given thumbs up on two. Right after we turned in Fantastic Four, we were told it was likely we wouldn’t get that, because assigning that book was ‘more politics,’ whatever that meant.

“WCW wasn’t a proposal; Marvel had hold of the license and we had conversations about what we’d do to make it work for them. When that stalled, we ended up doing art for WWF comics elsewhere.

“The project with Stephen King and so on was a revival of JN Williamson’s MASQUES, the horror anthology I did with Mort Castle at Innovation; that wasn’t a full proposal so much as copies of the first two squarebound volumes and a letter outlining the rights.

Kolchak: The Night Stalker was to be called ‘The Kolchak Papers,’ and his creator, novelist Jeff Rice, had already adapted the novel full script. The adaptation script with some painted cover art and copies of the first two novels was the proposal. I was amazed at how jazzed Sherryl was over that. We had a handshake deal on that one before I left the building — he said it was one of his favorite TV shows.

“In all, your article was a nice walk down memory lane; we really enjoyed working on developing that material for Marvel. Before then, and since then, we’ve been happy to write, draw, letter, or color hundreds of other books for them; they had the coolest characters and were my favorite company growing up, and I still feel that way.”

Thanks to Glass House, we were able to talk to a few other creators who helped us with more of the art from those proposals, featured in this very column. Ain’t they pretty?

[Ed: Look out for more Glass House/Marvel art in the coming week on the All The Rich Message Forum!]

This Has A Raking Over The Past Value Of 7 Out Of 10

Chasing Authority

Fresh from Bill Jemas’ announcement that he’d be happy to publish the Authority issues that DC are burying, Stuart Moore had the idea of bringing Brian and Steve’s story to Marvel, to work it round to another set of characters and called Azzarello up. He wrote on the Warren Ellis Delphi Forum, “I won’t try to speak for him, but he said he didn’t want to do the story anywhere for quite a while at least, and after he explained the plot a little further, I understood. This was a mutual decision on his part, Steve Dillon’s, and DC’s.”

So what is Azz and Dillon’s next move? Word has it they’ll be working on a brand new project for Wildstorm together, to take the place of the Authority arc.

This Has A Rumour Value Of 6 Out Of 10

Tummy Tickling And Jelly Wrestling

A number of people have posted messages around the internet chiding Marvel, DC, Dark Horse, CrossGen and others for having digs at each other in public and generally behaving like children.

I’d like to encourage them to continue just as they are. It makes for a great read, a good laugh and a general tummy tickle. I look forward to one day seeing Patty Jeres, Bill Jemas, Bob Wayne, Joe Quesada, Mike Richardson, Marc Alessi, Bill Rosemann engage in a pay-per-view jelly wrestling match, while Mike Carlin looks on, eyes rolling.

After giving you that mental image, I’ll take my leave of you…

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