Saturday, July 05, 2003


As I said, I like comics. On some level, everyone does, whether it is Dilbert or Garfield or Archie even.

The problem when you talk about comics is that everyone reads it as Comics=Superheroes=A lot of guys in tights. Unfortunately, this is true to some extent. At the same time, if you take more than two minutes, you'll probably find that there is something in comics you like, whether romance, police drama, sci-fi, whatever.

Why do I like comics?
1) They require you to read. Not sit down and manipulate some control pad, not sit down and stare at a screen while a story is being told to you. You actually have to DO something.
2) Comics are unique in that they don't have a huge editorial backlog, meaning that it is easier to be relevant. In theory, you can go from idea to script to comic in under 4 months, whereas other media (movies, TV), take a lot longer and go through a lot more filtration via marketers, censors, etc. More direct control = more creative freedom, and isn't that supposed to be A GOOD THING?
3) Budget for a movie is huge compared to a comic book (no actors, no Special effects), so it has almost unlimited potential.

This has been covered by better people than me, so I won't go any further than this.

For me, yeah, I still read a lot of superhero stuff, but I've grown out of most of it into the realm of political drama and science fiction/action adventure. The thing about the superhero stuff that I like is that it can be weird and imagination inspiring. I don't think I would have persued a career as an engineer if it hadn't been for the wonder I found in those comics. I sure wouldn't have if I had been more influenced by movies or video games.

The superhero ethics (yes, there is an ethical value) is also one that appeals to me. It goes like this
1) It is good to serve and help others when they need it, even if they never acknowledge what you have done (hence the real reason secret identities exist).
2) Power and Responsibility - You know what line I'm talking about, I'm not going to say it
3) Lead by example.

There is a lot more, but that's the basic. Aren't these good things to have in our stories? Isn't that better than some movies/video games, where the only lesson seems to be "might makes right" and "There is no such thing as right and wrong, only shades of grey"? I know that I'm sounding preachy, but this is just what I believe. If I ever have kids, I know what I'll want to teach them, and that says something.

That's all for now.


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