Looking Back: The Authority Volume 1 (Issues 1 -12)

Note: Depending on the format of the source media and what makes organizing my thoughts easier, the overall format of this blog series will be flexible to accommodate that! So this first, comics-focused installment of In Retrospect won’t be repeated for (as an example), me talking about an episode of “Smallville” that stuck with me.

I do not claim to hold the copyright to The Authority or the images in this post. I may own copies of the books, but that’s it entirely.

Content Notes: references to racism, misogyny, colonialism, fascism, and homophobia


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I got into The Authority right around the time that DC shut the doors on the Wildstorm universe for what I thought might be the last time.

A dear friend in the DC fandom, Sasha, had gotten me into the series after seeing me comment on fanart of Apollo and Midnighter with the kind of excitement that really only comes from getting to call a character “gay murder Batman” and pointed me in the direction of the series and some of its best arcs.

I started with Warren Ellis’s second volume of Stormwatch (which introduced the characters that’d go on to be part of The Authority and went on from there. It remains one of the series I reread as often as possible because the storylines and characters are just flat out fun to fuss over.

With DC’s The Wild Storm reinventing all of the characters from this run, I thought it’d be a perfect opportunity to look back at the first twelve issues of The Authority. What was so awesome about Ellis’s first run and why is it that Mark Millar and Frank Quitely’s following turn on the series so dang distressing?

And above all: does this series still deserve the hype in my head?

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