Saturday, 18 October 2008

Twisted Brainwrongs, an Addendum

As you might have noticed from my piece on issue #5 of The Filth, we've finally got the scanner working again round my place. Since I was planning to scan several images from the book, I switched from my well-worn collected edition of the series to my old single issues, figuring that the floppy format would be easier to work with.

And so it proved to be, except... wasn't there a scene in which Tex Porneau ranted on about existentialism and the abyss? And didn't David Fiore once write something about it once? I'd intended to make this scene central to my essay on this issue, but maybe I'd been wrong and the scene had taken place in issue #6. A quick re-read of issue #6 yielded nothing of the sort, so I came up with a new way to bring the essay to climax (!) and started writing.

Which is fine, except that when I finished the essay I was still pissed off. I was sure that scene was in there, and a wee bit of looking about turned up the passage in question in the collection.

Here's the scene in its bookstore edition:

And here's how it looked in the original serialized publication:

I wonder if Tex's diatribe was supposed to be printed in the monthly comic or if it was written for the collected edition? When I've got time I'm going to have a wee look through the collection to see if there are any other major changes.

This is probably a good time to point out that the shiny paper stock on which the original run of The Filth was printed really added to the sense that the series was glossy, if still perverse, entertainment. That said, this particular speech adds a lot to this scene for me, so here it is in all its sleazy glory:
The existentialists faltered on the brink of the gaping void.
"Nausea"... that's what those limp-dick intellectuals felt. They were afraid of the big black pit. Scared of losing their weeny-weeny dicklets in the asshole of being.

Not me! By God, not Tex! I'm gonna fuck the abyss raw! I'm gonna make it holler like Lolita!
Charming, I know, but the point I was going to make was this: faced with the abyss the abyss, Greg Feely worries about his cat and loses his sense of what's real, Ted Porneau wages a pornographic war on reality, and Chris Morris makes none-more-black comedy programs. What does Grant Morrison do? He tries to write his way through all his sick thought, in the hope of finding some healthier ones later on. We'll get there eventually, but 'Pornomancer' represents the point where the sickness is at its most debilitating, and I'm glad to be finished writing about it.

Also: turns out I couldn't find the David Fiore quote I thought I'd read on this topic. Maybe he removed it from the collected edition of his posts or something, I don't know.

Anyway, I definitely recommend that you check out Fiore's writing on The Filth -- he's got two essays on the topic up on Blogcritics and they're both worth reading. I'll be coming back to some of Dave's thoughts on pornography and "the ink" when I finally write about Gilbert Hernandez's Birdland, which at my current pace will probably be sometime in 2099!


Anonymous said...

Pamphlet/Trade differences are as follows: #1 – p2 newspaper name changed, pps2/3 CCTV times fixed. #2 – p2 LePen changed to LaPen. #5 – pps 8, 9, 11 captions changed to speech balloons, p17 dialogue added, p18 balloons re-positioned. #6 – p22 captions changed to speech balloons. #9 – pps 14/15 balloons re-positioned, p16 dialogue removed. #10 – pps 20/21 thought balloons changed to speech balloons. #11 – p16 dialogue removed. #13 – pps 10/11 captions added.]

David said...

Thanks anonymous! When I finish work I'm gonna check this out -- curious to see what dialogue was removed!

Anagramsci said...


I seem to remember discussing that scene too, but I can't for the life of me remember when or where it happened!

It's definitely in the Trade paperback though, because that's the only form I've read the book in.

Still loving the Filth-blogging man--although circumstances here have kept me from commenting much, sadly!