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Openness of ComicsGenerating Meaning within Flexible Structures$
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Maaheen Ahmed

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781496805935

Published to University Press of Mississippi: January 2018

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781496805935.001.0001

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Noir, Black Comedy, and Crime

Noir, Black Comedy, and Crime

(p.75) Chapter Three Noir, Black Comedy, and Crime
Openness of Comics

Maaheen Ahmed

University Press of Mississippi

The works described and analyzed here incorporate features from the noir both visually and in their stories. The first two comics, Tardi’sAdèle Blanc-Sec series and Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell’s From Hell, alter the conventions of crime and mystery in varying degrees. While the Adèleseries adheres to comics conventions, From Hell weaves several perspectives around the case of Jack the Ripper, bringing in a meta-fictional level that problematizes the very telling of the story. Focusing on mortal superheroes deprived of their powers, Marko Turunen and AnnemariHietanen’sDeath Walks on Its Hind Legs and Jyrki Heikkinen’sDr. Futuroincorporate thenoir elements of anti-heroes and hopeless circumstances. Black comedy, which is already rudimentarily present in Adèle, acquires a more self-reflexive facet in the last two comics by subverting the clichés attached to superheroes and underscoring the fine line between the human and the inhuman.

Keywords:   Noir, Jacques Tardi, Alan Moore, Marko Turunen, Jyrki Heikkinen

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