Lost Girls is a graphic novel depicting the sexually explicit adventures of three important female
fictional characters of the late 19th and early 20th century: Alice from Alice's Adventures in
Wonderland, Dorothy Gale from The Wizard of Oz, and Wendy Darling from Peter Pan. They meet as
adults in 1913, and describe and share some of their erotic adventures with each other. The story is
written by Alan Moore, and drawn by Melinda Gebbie .
The title of the work is a play on the name for Peter Pan's followers, the Lost Boys. The
individual sections dealing with the three titular "girls" all have distinct visual layouts and
themes used for their chapters. Alice's sections feature ovals reminiscent of her looking-glass;
Wendy's are shrouded in tall, dark rectangles reminiscent of the shadowy Victorian-architecture of
her time, and Dorothy has wide panels in imitation of the flat landscape of Kansas and prominently
featured silver shoes.
Moore attempts to tailor the dialogue to each character's previous experiences and stories. Dorothy
Gale, raised on a farm speaks in a casual Midwestern American dialect. Wendy's speeches are heavy
with timidity and clumsiness as a result of the repressive nature of her middle-class upbringing.
Alice, having briefly been made queen (in Through The Looking-Glass And What Alice Found There), is
more authoritarian in her upper-class English speech patterns and formal manner. Lewis Carroll's
nonsense-words also make allusory appearances in Alice's dialogue, including phrases such as "to
jab", "bandersnatch" and "contrarywise" as well as more overt references to her adventures in
phrases like "the reflection is the real thing" and "I made pretence".
Lost Girls has come under fire from critics who have argued that the book's controversial sexual
content involving children might open up stores that carry the book and people who buy the book to
be charged with possession and/or trafficking in child pornography. Many retailers have stated that
they will not stock the book out of fear of possible obscenity prosecution, though some said they
might make the book available to their customers via special order and simply not stock the book.
Moore describes the work as "pornography", a genre whose literary and artistic quality he and Gebbie
hope to raise:
"Certainly it seemed to us [Moore and Gebbie] that sex, as a genre, was woefully under-represented
in literature. Every other field of human experience-even rarefied ones like detective, spaceman or
cowboy-have got whole genres dedicated to them. Whereas the only genre in which sex can be discussed
is a disreputable, seamy, under-the-counter genre with absolutely no standards: [the pornography
industry]-which is a kind of Bollywood for hip, sleazy ugliness."
Moore states that the storm of criticism which he and Gebbie expected did not materialize, which he
attributes in part to his design of Lost Girls as a "benign" form of pornography (he cites "people
like Angela Carter who, in her book The Sadeian Women... admitted... the possibility [of] a form of
pornography that was benign, that was imaginative, was beautiful, and which didnâ€™t have the
problems that she saw in a lot of other pornography" as inspirations for the work). He has also said
that his own description of Lost Girls as "pornography" has "wrong-footed a lot of... people." Moore
speculates that "if weâ€™d have come out and said, 'well, this is a work of art,' they would
have probably all said, 'no it's not, it's pornography.' So because we're saying, 'this is
pornography,' they're saying, 'no it's not, it's art,' and people don't realise quite what they've
Over the course of the book's sixteen-year production, Moore and Gebbie entered into a romantic
relationship, and in 2005 they announced their engagement to be married. "I'd recommend to anybody
working on their relationship that they should try embarking on a 16-year elaborate pornography
together," joked Moore. "I think they'll find it works wonders."
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