Strangers In Paradise 90d Fran and Katchoo Cvr NM 1st print Terry Moore Movie S


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Strangers in Paradise (1996 Homage/Abstract) #90D

Published May 2007 by Image/Abstract
By Terry Moore

Is this it? The end of an award-winning series and an era in comics? The final issue of SiP! The saga of Katchoo and Francine comes to a climactic finale in this issue as 14 years of complex stories, intrigue, romance, and adventure bring fans to the final scene.

When I heard the news that Moore had decided to end his long-running indie powerhouse I reacted with a mixture of heartbreak and happiness; heartbreak because one of my favorite comics was ending and happiness because it would end on the creator’s terms by going out strong. While there was never a decrease in quality in the work it had become clear over the last few story-arcs that Moore was losing a little flexibility. It seemed that certain flash forwards and storylines projected into the future had reduced the type of stories Moore could tell. The decision to end the series, while painful for me to accept, came at the perfect time in the story. Many of the larger storylines revolving the lead characters, Francine, Katchoo, and David, had been resolved. While a handful of loose ends needed to be tied the only remaining issue was the question that had been on the minds of fans for years: Will Francine and Katchoo ever get together? While I was pretty sure that the answer would be yes, the question of how remained to be answered.

Moore begins his final arc by shattering the previously established status quo in order to bring all his storylines to a close. The first major change was the breakdown of Francine’s marriage to her rich doctor husband, Brad. Francine had spent most of the series riddled with self-doubt and looking for her knight-in-shining-cliché to come and rescue her from her life and give her the house and kids she always dreamed of. When she learns that her husband has been having an affair she doesn’t breakdown into an emotional wreck; she instead finally realizes that her true love has been there waiting the whole time. She maturely ends it with Brad and goes to fight for Katchoo.

Francine’s self-actualization at the end of the series is emblematic of one of Moore’s greatest strengths; character development. In the very first storyline of the series Francine has a complete mental breakdown when her then boyfriend, the crude and cheating Freddy Femur, has an affair with his secretary. Now many years later, Francine is able to suffer the same indignity at the hands of her ideal man, and does so with inner-strength and grace. While comic books as a medium have certainly come a long way, there is still a lack of substantive female characters being written. While there are a few exceptions it is sad to see how many women are still being reduced to one-dimensional archetypes. Francine’s development, like all the female characters in SIP, is a stunning example that it is possible to create complex and real female characters without reducing them to stereotypes or caricatures.

The next earth-shattering change comes from the death of the character David Quinn. David was a deeply complex person who managed to make room for himself in the hearts of Francine and Katchoo despite his troubled past. While he was my favorite character in the whole series, his death while tragic and powerful was also necessary. He was devoted to Katchoo and while he had reconciled himself to the fact that their love would never be exactly as he wanted it, his very existence as a third option for true love ultimately made him an obstacle in Francine and Katchoo’s ultimate union. This particular plot device is fascinating for a multitude of reasons. First of all it reinforces the idea that not all happy endings are without their tragedy. If Moore cured David of the brain tumor that eventually took his life, I feel that I would not be as satisfied with the ending. You can only have a happily-ever-after if you also have a point of tragic reference to put it into perspective.

With Francine at last ready to embrace the love she had previously feared and all other loose ends tied, the last issue ends with Francine and Katchoo, both pregnant, together at long last. It took a long time but the payoff was worth the wait. Moore concludes his passionate and powerful story with the ending it deserves. I will miss Moore’s book as a fan, but now that it is over I hope the series will be scrutinized by people within the comic book industry to gain a better appreciation of just how much it contributed to the medium. For the longest time I had dismissed the book as simply being the modern incarnation of those boring old romance comics. That was a mistake I freely admit as I know realize that for many years SIP has been the one true comic that tackled love with all its complexities and pain.

Comics, just as they have with women characters, have been notorious for reducing love stories to their most basic components. They were used as background drama to fill the panels between big fight scenes or at worst as plot devices that lead to the ruin of one of the characters. Moore was able to craft a series where the love story was central and all the plot and drama was subordinate to that. While I think this book is great for what it is, I believe that is also worthy of what it represents for comics as a whole. This book has expanded that range and ability of the entire medium to tell a love story without diminishing it. If the reader of this review will forgive a little melodrama, I would go so far as to say that Moore isn’t just a great storyteller, but in the larger realm of comics he is a visionary.

While I no longer officially work at a comic book store, I have a handful of fans who still thank me for recommending this comic. Yet I think I speak for all of us when I say that the real thanks belongs to one man in particular. So thank you Terry. Thank you so much.

‘Strangers in Paradise’ Movie in Works From ‘Professor Marston’ Filmmaker

“Strangers in Paradise” follows Katchoo, a beautiful young woman living a quiet life with everything going for her. She’s smart, independent, and very much in love with her best friend, Francine. Then Katchoo meets David, a gentle but persistent young man who is determined to win Katchoo’s heart. The resulting love triangle is a touching comedy of romantic errors until Katchoo’s former employer comes looking for her and $850,000 in missing mob money.

“I’ve been wanting to adapt ‘Strangers in Paradise’ for over a decade, since the first time I read it and couldn’t put it down,” Robinson said. “Terry Moore writes real female characters with such breathtaking sensitivity. With ‘Strangers in Paradise,’ he pulls off the nearly impossible — a sexy, stylish crime story with tons of heart. I look forward to our collaboration!”

Moore’s series “Rachel Rising” was nominated for a 2012 Bram Stoker Award in the superior achievement in a graphic novel category by the Horror Writers Association. Robinson and Moore are both represented by WME.

Terry Moore Gives Update on the ‘Strangers in Paradise’ Movie

It has been almost a year since Angela Robinson was tapped to direct the movie based on Terry Moore’s acclaimed Strangers in Paradise, and little has been revealed yet about the status of the project — but Moore revealed a bit during a recent interview with SYFY Wire.

The long-running comic, which is currently in the midst of a year-long revival to celebrate its 25th anniversary, centers on three characters: Katchoo, Francine, and David. The three are living a quiet life in Texas when dark forces from Katchoo’s past track her down, hoping to take everything from her, including Francine and David.

“Because Strangers in Paradise is the work from my heart, I guess maybe the book of my life, I turned down offers where I was just going to hand it to somebody for $20,” Moore said. “That just seemed like not a good idea. And I used to talk to people and they’d say ‘Oh, that lesbian story,’ And I’d say ‘nope.’ If you said that you didn’t read it. There’s so much more to it, and nobody likes labels, right? So now we’re going to do the movie and the deal was, I have to write the first script, just to at least get the story going in the right direction. because I’m working with friends, with Angela and all that, I think it’s going to work. Angela is a great writer; she did this movie called Professor Marston and the Wonder Women. She wrote that, so she’s really really good and I trust her to take my first script — and when I write a script it’s not like it’s going to say cut to black or anything. It’s more like an actor’s script, like a stage play. It’s not like a shooting script. Angela will turn it into what she needs it to be, but I feel really good about trusting her with my baby.”

Moore’s approach, of course, could be said to mirror that of Todd McFarlane, the Spawn creator who eventually came to the conclusion that if he was going to get a movie made that he could be proud of, he would have to have a hand in it himself. McFarlane will direct Spawn later this year for Blumhouse, with Jamie Foxx in the lead role.

In the twenty-five years that he has been working in mainstream comics, Moore has earned a reputation for writing and drawing women well; when asked, he tends to deflect, saying that he simply writes them like people, and chooses to make his characters female because that is what he prefers to draw.

“I’ve been wanting to adapt Strangers In Paradise for over a decade, since the first time I read it and couldn’t put it down. Terry Moore writes real female characters with such breathtaking sensitivity,” Robinson said at the time of the announcement. “With Strangers In Paradise he pulls off the nearly impossible — a sexy, stylish crime story with tons of heart. I look forward to our collaboration.”

Strangers in Paradise, along with Silver & Black (the planned Silver Sable/Black Cat movie set in Sony’s Spider-Man universe) and DC’s New Gods, will be the first comic book movies directed by women of color.

Moore, a best-selling and award-winning indie writer/artist, has seen his share of film and TV options over the years, but neither Strangers in Paradise nor Rachel Rising, his recent horror series, made it past the screenplay stage.

Robinson directed Professor Marston And The Wonder Women, a drama that centers on the life of Wonder Woman creator William Moulton Marston and the women who inspired her personality. That film is available on DVD, Blu-ray, and streaming. Strangers in Paradise XXV #4 will be in comic shops on Wednesday.

Near mint, 1st print. Bagged & Boarded.