Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Alan Moore's Providence: Act 1

Providence: Act 1 by Alan Moore and Jacen Burrows has just been released by Avatar Press.

I have been eagerly waiting this first collection of Providence for a while now. A gay protagonist in a Lovecraftian setting? Sold. Take my money.

And on page 8 we get a panel that may make this comic the gayest thing to ever happen in comics since Wolverine met Freddie Mercury.

Boom. Mic drop.

For those wondering what makes this so gay, "wearing her hair up" is old-timey gay slang for code switching/closeting oneself around the straight-folks and "dropping hairpins" is letting slip little signs that one is friends with a nice girl from Kansas named Dorothy.

Where might the great wizard Moore have learned of such peculiar bits of gay history? The fine commentators over at Facts in the Case of Alan Moore's Providence (a website that annotates Lovecraftian comics), discovered a video where Moore talks about reading George Chauncey's Gay New York. Chauncey engagingly writes about the history of the gay (and to a lessor degree lesbian) community of New York from 1890 to 1940. If you have the time and motivation, reading Gay New York ahead of or along side of Providence would help inform some of the references in it; though, it is by no means essential to appreciate the comic.

On a related note, one of my favorite sub-sub-genres is queer weird fiction. Admittedly, I've not managed to find a lot of content in this sure-to-be-the-next-big-thing area of culture. What does exist, though, is immensely satisfying.

Take for example Jordan L. Hawk's Whyborne & Griffin series (7 books and a few short stories strong), which checks the additional box of being set in Victorian times.

There's also the mildly underrated film Cthulhu, which is a guilty pleasure of mine that I have watched at least 4 times. The movie stars a gay history teacher with connections to what appears to be (despite the title) a Dagon cult. The themes of rural alienation and inability to escape one's roots works well from both a queer and Lovecraftian perspective.


  1. Just found this blog. As a queer comics fans, I'm over-the-moon happy to see the treasure trove of info you've got here and I'll definitely be binge-reading through.