Comics Corner: Crossed +100 (Alan Moore, Gabriel Andrade)

I've never been a huge Garth Ennis fan. His work, especially his newer work, feels like he's trying to be the edgiest man in the world by throwing in all the possible gore and perversion he can come up either by himself or reading the Internet. And by doing that his stuff feels dull and lifeless. With some of his work, like the Boys, it took a couple of issues to arise, with others like Crossed it was right there from the beginning.

The amount of violence and the sexual deviation was high from the get-go and as far as I know went even more ridiculous with the following story arcs. If you didn't have a story about a mountain clan headed by a pedophile, then you had one of the crossed raping a dolphins blow hole, because that's how it goes.

If you don't know Crossed, then, in a nutshell, it is a bit different take on zombies. Kind off. In Crossed there's this weird infection, that makes a cross-shaped mark on the face of the infected. They lose all self-control and become bloodthirsty, murderous and sexually uninhibited. Instead of just killing people, they rape, kill and eat their victims as well as each other. They don't only cause pain, they enjoy it, either caused to themselves or to others. The comics also are very graphic about all this.

So I guess it doesn't come as a surprise I really haven't read that many full Crossed arcs, give or take a couple of issues here and there. It really isn't my cup of tea. There have been several story arcs in the series, written by several different authors, but as a whole, I've been relatively uninterested in it.

I, however, did pick up Alan Moore's take on Crossed, being a fan of his work. The grizzly bearded wizard penned a 6 part title +100, in which we get to see the world a hundred years after the virus first came to. As a story it's not Moore's best, but it is relatively entertaining. It has far less gore and violence and sex than the other Crossed stories I've read, but all that is still present there.

The story follows a team of archivists, who rummage the ruins of the world after the amount of infected has gone to decline. They try to piece out their own former civilization, when they find out that the infected are again on the rise. So something needs to be done about it.

We get to see incestuous Crossed families as well as flashbacks from the life of a psychopath Salt, who despite turning into infected himself, always kept his manners about him. He in fact started to train other infected, as he thought that while a world of violence and sexual deviation is all fun and games, it also wouldn't last very long. He knows he's the only man that can do something about it, so he heads to the mountains where he rises his trained group of infected, who lie in waiting for their time to come.

As it often is the case with Moore,  the writing is solid from start to finish, despite it is just as predictable in the end as you'd expect for the subject matter. When the shit starts to hit the fan, you pretty much guess where the story goes and how it ends, especially given the whole context of what series it's a part of. I can't help to think that in the end +100 would have been much more interesting had the whole infection been left as a background device: something that happened ages ago, but people still remember and are scared of, despite not fully understanding what went on or how it all started or ended.

At its best, the story is during the moments where the group is investigating the ruins of the world and the one certain diary segment of Salt is pretty damned funny in the way he describes his day after the Crossed appear. Overall, if you're not squeamish about violence and sex, +100 might be a worth a look, even if you aren't a huge fan of the original comic.  It's not the greatest piece ever written, but it's not a bad way to spend a couple of hours, especially if you can get it cheap somewhere.

If you want it, they sell it at Comixology. The story of +100 is also chugging on under an another writer.

Comments