Sunday, September 17, 2006

Attention Spans & Comics

I listen to really long audio books at work, and one of the comments I've been hearing from coworkers recently is "Gosh how can you stand to listen to one story that long? Don't you get sick of the characters after a while?"

Which made me pause, as to me the longer a book is, especially if it is a good one, the better as I like getting involved with the characters. Yet I wonder if that isn't as common as at least it once was, as even among comic fans sales decline at a fairly steady rate on even the most popular series.

As a comic fan I've experienced and seen the love fans have for characters. These characters are like old friends to many readers, and getting to come in and check in on their lives so often is a huge part of the draw for many readers.

Yet I wonder if the common person isn't interested in followingthe same characters for such a period of time. Oh it might be fine to go spend 2 hours every other year on a Spider-Man movie, but that same person might not be interested in reading Spidey's adventures every week.

Look at TV, many of the most popular shows are reality TV shows. Which has a new cast and location every year. A cast that also decreases as the show moves along, meaning less info for the viewer to keep up with.

Yet meanwhile comics continue to complicate their stories, not in terms of story quality, but in the amount of info you need to know to follow along.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

News from Baltimore Con

This past weekend was the Baltimore Con, with lots of your usual comics news being released.


Joss Whedon to Take On Runaways

Proving me wrong in my previous post, where I wondered why even continue Runaways with series creator Brian Vaughan leaving. Joss Whedon, whose work on Buffy, Angel and Firefly TV shows was amazing, has me thrilled to see what he'll do on this series of young people with powers and attitude.


Thor and Nova get new series relaunches. These are two characters I've grown an interest in during the past year reading old back issues and/or collections.

Too bad they are both done by creators, JMS and Dan Abnett, whose comic work I have yet to find a taste for.


DC to Collect Who's Who in B&W Showcase Volumes Perhaps I'm missing the reason for collecting bios on characters and situations that are no longer relevant? It just seems like a sort of painful reminder to readers of what DC no longer does.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Runaways Creative Team Leaves

I must admit to being really dissapointed in the news of writer Brian K. Vaughan and artist Adrian Alphona's exit from the Marvel series Runaways. It has been one of the more consistently entertaining, and fresh ideas to come from Marvel in quite a few years.

With its little ties to the Marvel Universe as a whole, it was able to breathe and do things that other series couldn't do because of the inertia of time and continuity that burden them.

The series will continue with a new creative team, and Vaughan says he wants to see it develop into a franchise. Yet this is one instance where I would rather just see the series end. Because if it does become that successful, it will likelt lose much of the appeal it brought to bear.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Galaxion Returns!

Via Johanna


One of the first "indy" comics I ever read was Tara Tallan's Galaxion series, which was a combination young people soap opera, Star Trek like sci-fi series. For years I've been hungry to see more of this series, and now I finally can with new pages every Tuesday.

I am really stoked for this!

What Have I Been Reading?

Actually I'm even amazed at myself at how odd an assortment of things I'm reading currently.

52 - No one is more surprised than I am to be reading this weekly series from DC Comics. For a long time I thought that I was through with the company, yet this weekly series has some how held my interest.

I can't help watching, perhaps in the way one can't help but look at a car wreck, for poor Ralph as just as it seems he's reached his lowest point they manage to drive him down even further. While Black Adam's role as a true vigilante hero in the vein of the original Nazi tossing Superman of Shuster and Siegel always draws me in.

Of course the series probably holds together better since I read 4 or 5 issues at a time since I get them through mail order.

Showcase: Elongated Man - I'd been a fan of Ralph and Sue for a long time, but hadn't read many of their individual stories. This collection going from Ralph's first appearance in the Flash to his run in Detective Comics was interesting.

The stories are a bit sappy, and just plain silly in spots, but they were still fun especially to see just how wildly Ralph used his powers. I was bummed that something as important as Ralph and Sue getting married wasn't covered in a story itself though.

Get a Life - This collection of Monsieur Jean stories even surpassed my already high expectations from reading other strips. As we get looks into Jean's single life, that never gets too sappy or wishy washy, but is heartfelt, entertainingly done stories of life in a clean easy to read style.

Arkham Asylum 15th Anniversary HC - Actually found this on a bargain rack at Books a Million for $3.58, despite the $29.95 cover price. I'd been interested in reading it for years, but I must be blasphamous here. I can't stand the art. It tries so hard to be intense and mood driven, that it fails to allow me to follow what on Earth is going on in the story.

The extras were interesting, especially to see a Morrison script, as well as discovering that Morrison could easily be an accomplished artist from the panel breakdowns he drew.


I'm back. Where have I been gone? Nowhere really, I just got a new promotion at work, and found myself a social life. I also found that for a long time I just had nothing to say about comics or perhaps not enough to go throught the trouble of writing. Yet anyway I'm back and let's see how it goes now.