display | more...

Brief Lives is a four page backup story by Alan Moore that ran in The Omega Men #26, released in May 1985. The story is about a race of spider-like aliens, intent on conquest, who find two gigantic, rocky looking aliens who are totally immobile and passive. The spider-like aliens attempt to conquer the gigantic aliens, but find it impossible to even gain their notice, because they operate on such different timescales. The spider aliens all go insane in despair, leaving their weapons of war to rust and crumble to dust. The last page changes to the large aliens timescale, with one noticing a small cloud of dust, and the other commenting that life is too short to worry about such things.

Alan Moore gained fame for such sweeping narratives as V for Vendetta, The Watchmen and Promethea. In contrast, this story is very short and almost seems like a throwaway joke, running as filler material in an obscure title. However, it does deal with themes of time, space and meaning that Alan Moore deals with in his more epic works, he just does it more lightly and more succinctly here.