Jean Giraud/Moebius 1938-2012 | supervillain.
Moebius changed my life.
More than once. Many times. Before I began reading his comics, before I was even reading comics.
Jean Giraud, either directly through his involvement or indirectly through his influence, created the aesthetic behind Alien, Blade Runner, Akira, Neuromancer, The Fifth Element, Tron, The Abyss, Frank Miller’s Ronin, Frank Quitely’s X-Men, Geoff Darrow, Walt Simonson, Mike Mignola, Taiyo Matsumoto’s No.5, the Empire Strikes Back, and Nausicaa: The Valley of the Wind – all of which I’d obsessed over and metabolized long before I ever read a single page of Moebius’ comics. The most resonant image of the future, the one which has dominated both the fringe and popular cultures of the past 30 years on three separate continents.
No artist, let alone a comics artist, has been as singularly influential on the way we as a species see ourselves moving forward. For good or ill, since Moebius, and his contemporaries, imagined what we now think of as the modern urbanized city (or the cyberpunk city), we couldn’t have conceived of it. While that idea has many, many precedents, none of them ring as true. None of them are still relevant. Not one of them captures what city blocks teeming with dozens of kinds of people all together in one space. Walls of faces, some alien, all familiar. None have the locations and trappings of “the future” as used, lived-in. Science fiction in the past 30 years is indelibly linked to Moebius, he is everywhere you look.