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YMMV / Miracleman

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  • Complete Monster: Kid Miracleman (Jonathan Bates), as re-envisioned by Alan Moore and John Totleben, is both so powerful and so psychotic that his alter ego, the young and innocent Johnny Bates, resists uttering his transformation word. When Johnny finally does so to stop the boys in his group home from raping him, Kid Miracleman tears apart his assailants and momentarily considers sparing the one nurse who'd been kind to him. Then he reconsiders, lest people say he's "going soft", and punches the top half of her head into a fine red mist. He then rampages through London, massacring tens of thousands and desecrating their corpses by draping their flayed skins from clothes lines, creating a chessboard with breasts as pieces, and making a rain of severed hands and feet. During his destructive rampage, he prefers to mutilate the children in his path rather than kill them outright.
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop:
    • Subverted and deconstructed in Alan Moore's final issue. It seems to be saying an all-powerful superhuman to stepping in and ruling the world to suit his own standards is a good thing that will turn humanity into a Crystal Spires and Togas Mary Sue Topia. However the ending is highly ambiguous, giving a sense that humanity has become a joke of some sorts and Miracleman at the end, is filled with doubt if what happened was the right thing or not.
    • The central conflict of the series is whether humans have any right to exist and anything that makes them special in a world where there are people who are functionally the same as them, but better. Ultimately, it suggests that... no, they don't. However, the series also deals heavily with just how that makes the humans feel. Miraclewoman, one of the biggest proponents of the idea that superhumans are better than regular humans, also makes it clear that superiority does not excuse cruelty.
  • Foe Yay:
    • During Miracleman's first fight with Kid Miracleman, the narration mentions the "almost sexual hatred" they have for each other.
    • Between Miracleman and Dr. Gargunza. Reaches it's most disturbing when Miracleman kisses Gargunza as the doctor dies.
  • Genius Bonus: Both the Moore and Gaiman runs are filled with references to obscure books, films, and music.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Alan Moore once described Miracleman "Superman as a horror story". Brightburn technically turned that concept into a reality.
  • My Real Daddy: Alan Moore is pretty much the only reason Miracleman hasn't disappeared into the mists of obscurity.
  • Nightmare Fuel:
    • Pretty much anything Kid Miracleman does.
    • Liz has a horrific visions of her unborn child as born limbless, with a mouth spewing pus and blood in endless screams.
    • Kid Miracleman is still alive, trapped inside the subspace dimension where all the bodies used by the beings that use the transformation ability are kept. Though comatose and badly injured, having transformed back into his human alter ego to escape the pain Miracleman caused him by transporting shrapnel through his head, the fact that he still lives means that it's possible he might one day escape, albeit small
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    • Liz's actual child, Winter, is a Creepy Child Humanoid Abomination, and while perfectly benevolent in her own way, her Troubling Unchildlike Behavior and inhuman personality is bad enough to terrify even Miracleman, who was atleast partially human. The narration makes it clear that Winter is not, no matter what she looks like. It's a commentary on what an actual superhuman child would be like, rather than your typical child hero.
    • Alan Moore once wrote a timeline of sorts which showed that events diverged from the point where Mike regained his memories of Miracleman and reactivated his powers. What happened in the alternate timeline? That's the world where V for Vendetta takes place. So yeah, your choice is World War 3 and a fascist goverment with genocidal policies, or a superhuman-controlled world which is Utopia Justifies the Means at best. Take your pick.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Andy Warhol appears in just one issue of Neil Gaiman's run, and yet it's the one issue everyone considers to be the best of his run, mostly for its intriguing exploration of Warhol, the experimental art-style and the portrayal of Gargunza's legacy.
  • "Seinfeld" Is Unfunny:
    • A lot of the things about the series are much less unfamiliar to readers after the whole Dark Age of Comic Books, mainly because comics have became less afraid to show explicit violent or sexual images. That said, the sheer amount of Gorn caused by Kid Miracleman manages to avert this; no amount of Nineties Anti-Heroes can prepare you for some of the shit he does.
    • And it's not even the comic's fault, but in part it was all the legal issues regarding the rights to the title, which caused many new readers come late to a book that was groundbreaking in its time and preceded most of the titles associated with the Dark Age proper.
    • Many of the ideas used here, such as superhumans becoming distanced from humanity and sexuality of superheroes, have been explored later and appear less groundbreaking, including by Alan Moore himself in Watchmen.
  • Spiritual Anti Thesis: Alan Moore's landmark run is frequently described as "Superman told as a horror story". Moore would later create an anti-thesis of his own work on this comic through his run on Supreme.
  • Tearjerker:
    • After Liz and Winter both leave Miracleman, Mike "commits suicide" by never changing back from Miracleman.
    • During the fight with Kid Miracleman, Miracleman realises that the only way to stop him for good is to kill him. He does by waiting for Kid Miracleman to transform back into Jonathan, and then snaps his neck.
      • What really kills it is Miracleman bawling his eyes out after the fact. He might not be a human or even an effective hero, but by God he tries.
    • When Young Miracleman is resurrected some 40 years after his death, Miracleman first wants to acclimate him slowly to the enormous changes the world has gone through, but this doesnt work out. When YM retires to his room after being given the full scope of what he and the others really are, and what happened to Johnny Bates, we get this scene.
    Young Miracleman: *near tears* Y-y-young Miracleman... *transforms back into his human identity* I-I wuh-want my muh-Mum...
    • Miracleman Apocrypha, an interquel between Moore and Gaiman's run, reveals that one of Miracleman's most prized possessions is a fake photo album made by Dr. Gargunza depicting an alternate version of Mike Moran's life where Liz never left him and Winter turned out to be an ordinary girl, designed specifically to invoke false memories in Miracleman that always end with them leaving him. He reads it over and over again desperate for a happy ending for once, despite being told that it will never happen, just because he regrets losing Liz and how his live ultimately transpired that much.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Line Art: Not as widely-decried as the likes of, say, The Killing Joke or V for Vendetta, but you'll find few people who think the Eclipse-colored editions of the first two arcs is better than the original B&W Warrior issues.
  • The Woobie:
    • Mike Moran, the pathetically (though realistically) human version of Miracleman.
    • Liz Moran, who has her relatively happy life absolutely shredded by the events of the comic.
    • Jonathan Bates, the even more tragic Secret Identity of Kid Miracleman.
    • Big Ben. The look of horror and heartbreak on his bruised face once he begins to realise that his entire life has been a lie...
    • Young Miracleman. Gets killed, then revived, and then has to explore the radically changed world and what happened to his friends disturbs him deeply. The look of betrayal, horror, and heartbreak when Miracleman kisses him just speaks volumes on how much the poor kid had been holding in his anger and confusion since his revival.
    • Mist's mother, Rachel. Her husband and stepson dump her for a Japanese woman, and when Miracleman sends her a sample of his sperm to make up for her infertility, the super-baby it produces makes her feel more obsolete and inadequate than ever. She's notably the most miserable of the characters introduced in The Golden Age, and even the Carnival fails to cheer her up.
    • Miracledog, an innocent little puppy who is forcibly turned into a giant monster by his owner and brutally beaten to death.


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