Never have comic book characters exerted so much influence over popular culture as now. But few of the films crafted from the cookie cutter Marvel formula and their DC competitors have something to say about our lives and the power structures that govern them.
That was the case in 1982 too, when a much smaller comics industry was confined to the pages rather than the big screen. But writer Alan Moore and illustrator David Lloyd tore up the rulebook with V for Vendetta.
The Guy Fawkes mask of the eponymous V not only made for a striking story of one man’s war against a fascist English state in the comic book and blockbuster film, but it also made for an enduring image of solidarity, protest and action at the heart of hacktivist group Anonymous and the Occupy movement.
Lloyd’s provocative art was the obvious choice to illustrate The Big Issue’s take on Occupy London’s 10th anniversary, and the 71-year-old Londoner was only too keen to get involved, providing exclusive, never-seen-before early illustrations.
Lloyd told The Big Issue the connection between his art and protests around the world continues to thrill him.
“The whole thing, it’s really great,” he says. “It’s a great privilege that the mask became so important and representative with protest and resistance. I’m very proud of that.”