Despite Callahan's description, Miracleman did not kill any of the terrorists with his "thunderclap" in Chapter 1. We learn that from Cream's narration in Chapter 6. "Only the terrorists and the pressmen were in the station when it happened. And all the terrorists are either in hospital or police custody now." But he is right that Moore followed the thunderclap with a narrative captain, "And then there is silence ... deathly silence." I wonder if Moore changed his mind here? There's no question, though, that MM was shown killing several times, usually without mercy or remorse.
The problem is, Marvelman is a Superman archetype; he'd instantly be Earth's most powerful hero. One of the things I like about Marvel is that it doesn't have a Superman.
I just want to see Gaiman be able to complete his trilogy.
CONTINUING BOOK THREE: OLYMPUS
SUMMARY: Miracleman observes a miniaturized, unearthly life form contained within something akin to a fishbowl somewhere inside his mammoth home. The life forms are just starting to ponder the nature of their existence and question whether any other life exists outside of their world. It reminds Miracleman of his first encounter with extraterrestrial life. But before resuming our tale, he visits the upper reaches of his home, where a park honors the memory of one of the first Warpsmith aliens he met, Aza Chorn. In the past, the Warpsmiths have teleported Miracleman and Miraclewoman to the homeworld of the Qys, the originators of the multiple-body technology. Although the Warpsmiths and Qys are enemies, they are meeting concerning the presence of higher life on Earth; namely, Winter Moran. Representing the Warpsmiths, a race that can move incredibly fast (so fast that they often appear to be standing still), are Aza Chorn and one other. Representing the Qys is its supreme kingqueen, a being whose mind has been placed in a perfected body.* The Qys agent gives its report: We learn that the ship that crashed in England had been sent there on something called a “firedrake sweep.” The agent and his partner found six cuckoos — beings created using the technology Gargunza pilfered. Three are dead (Young Miracleman, Young Nastyman and Miracledog); two are with him (Miracleman and Miraclewoman), and the final one, Johnny Bates, is in a harmless trance. (We briefly cut away and are reminded of the ongoing battle to win control of Johnny’s mind.) The question at hand concerns who will control Earth because it will break a stalemate between the two sides. Miraclewoman shockingly suggests they “have sex,” but what she means is they should forge an alliance. They agree to do so by jointly monitoring Earth during its change period. Miracleman, overwhelmed by the proceedings, is stunned by Miraclewoman’s forthrightness and wonders in the present if this is when he began to love her. The two are appointed the Qys representatives to monitor Earth; Aza Chorn and a new Warpsmith, Phon Mooda, join them. Then, in a blink, Miracleman is sent back to the Morans’ apartment. Liz is unimpressed with his outer-space adventure; she tells him that she is leaving for a few days to get away from the madness. After she departs, a voice comes from the bassinette, “Father? I think it’s time we discussed Mother, don’t you?” In the present, Miracleman narrates, “Five years ago now. Five short years since first I walked on other worlds or heard the voice of Winter. Five short years that have seen more change than have the last five centuries.” He thinks about that in his garden of wonders among the clouds.
COMMENTS: I’m surprised how well Moore forecasted the Internet in the opening narration. “Computer and telecommunication webs make Earth a place where distance is irrelevant. … No cities, concentrating jobs and lives into one crammed environment, when screens can take the office into every home. No borders in the electronic state, where jokes in Aberdeen raise laughter in Japan.” In the late ’80s, we had Usenet, but it wasn’t widely used. Moore is connecting the Warpsmiths to Hermes in the pantheon he is building. In ancient times, Hermes was a messenger. In the 1980s, an interconnected world was the stuff of the gods! (By my count, people from four continents have posted on this thread.) Before I totally forget, I should touch on the artwork of John Totleben. He was a godsend for this book after the hit-and-miss quality of the art in Book Two. The art has consistency again, and Totleben has great range, going from the homeworld of the Qys to the apartment of the Morans. This might not have been all of Totleben’s doing, but note the great contrast between the wide-open, brightly colored two-page spread showing the aftermath of the conference and the tight confines of the Morans’ apartment and the gray drabness in that scene. Finally, it’s worth noting that the Warpsmiths have a publication history outside of Miracleman that delves more into their culture, but I’m largely unfamiliar with it. I think there are also separate copyright issues involved with them. Better open that checkbook, Marvel!
* — “Perfected body” meaning the oversized offspring of the Kree Supreme Intelligence and a Star Trek horta.
And on the earlier discussion of Marvel's Sentry: I am pretty unfamiliar with him, but I still stick by my original thought: The Marvel Universe is better off for not having a Superman archetype who is Earth's most powerful superhero.
CONTINUING BOOK THREE: OLYMPUS
SUMMARY: Miracleman does an interpretive dance for his fellow deities of Earth. We recognize Miraclewoman and that there are two Warpsmiths, but most of their identities are unknown. Fortunately for us, the dance begins where the story had left off. Miracleman has a bizarre conversation with Winter; he basically stammers as she enlightens him. She had been controlling Liz’s mind at times but found the control difficult to maintain. She already can read minds, using the ability to learn German and Spanish from Gargunza, she knows how to manipulate the minds of humans, and she had chosen her own name. Later, Miracleman meets up with Miraclewoman and the Warpsmiths behind the moon. Hidden there, they are constructing a monitoring station for Earth. It contains a real-time hologram of the planet’s happenings. Phon Mooda explains the reasoning behind their mission: “It’s the law of extraordinary beings: Introduce one to a culture and soon there’ll be dozens.” Aza Chorn continues that they will gather all “existing talent and assemble it. … Your world enters a new and glorious age. We must all work as one to ease its transformation.” The major missing piece is the firedrake, the original reason the Qys came to Earth years earlier. He is Huey Moon, a junkyard refugee in Philadelphia who has the ability to control fire because of a genetic quirk. The five of them forge a passive pantheon, observing Earth without interfering. The following year, Miracleman receives distressing news when Liz decides to leave him (and Mike) and Winter decides to depart for the Qys homeworld under her own power. With his ties to humanity dwindling, Mike Moran sees no reason for his continued existence. He climbs high into the Scottish mountains and commits suicide by uttering one word: “Kimota.” When Miracleman appears, he reads the note Moran left behind: “Michael Joseph Moran, 1952-1983, Rest in Peace.” Miracleman honors his request. Then, two years later, it begins. In a boys’ home bathroom, bullies beat up Johnny Bates again, but this time one goes to rape him. Crying and snotting, Johnny whispers, “I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. Miracleman.” In a blinding explosion, Kid Miracleman is released. The rapist takes the brunt of the change effect. Bates beheads a second boy who had been pinning him down and then kills a third who was watching the door. Next, Bates encounters a nurse who had shown him kindness. He slays her, too. Their deaths were only the beginning. “Atrocity, murder, torsos, pierced heads […] the bloody corpse-soaked Thames. […] Horror’s bastard, pimp of charnel houses … Bates got out.”
COMMENTS: You have to love Winter. I don’t think I have seen another character before or since that reminds me of her. Winter’s name appears to represent the new era (season) of humanity that her presence ushers in. I also must point out that because she was born in October, she was conceived the previous winter and might have gained self-cognizance then. And, of course, the return of Bates. I’m getting queasy thinking about the next chapter…