24 June 2009

COMICS ARE DOOMED, or maybe not....

"Big World: the Battle for Diversity“, is the second chapter from Scott McCloud’s book Reinventing Comics. The Chapter deals more in depth with the Twelve Revolutions that comics need to under go to become more widely appreciated and accepted. The three revolutions he calls Gender Balance, Minority Representation, and Diversity of Genre from chapter one are the most important. McCloud thinks that if there was a better gender balance, meaning more women writers, artist and readers that comics could potentially have more room to grow both in audience and diversity. McCloud also thinks that Minorities are not represented enough in comics and that there are not enough writers and artist for comics (too many white people).Lastly McCloud wants more diversity in genres of comics. Most comics that come out are either superhero comics or just other knockoffs of another comic‘s great ideas. McCloud thinks that if comics grow in all these areas that comics will become not only more popular, but that the rest of the Twelve Revolutions will come easier.
I agree with McCloud (I know that is weird, right) on all points he made on theses three revolutions. I think that if women were represented in the comic world as more than just big chested and the objects of young boys wet dreams, that comics would be better off. What is so wrong with more women kicking ass like Wonder Woman, or women just having more point in a story than a damsels in distress like Lois Lane? However, I do think in order to connect with a more female audience the writers would have to be women (no mater how hard a man tries we women are still just a little beyond their levels of understanding), which would be part of McCloud’s gender balance definition in his revolutions. Also I think that minorities should be represented more. If comics want to be taken seriously they have to be diverse. It can’t always be a white man saving earth. That drives me crazy. I have not really read a lot of comics yet, but I’m about positive it would be hard to find a well written comic about a Puerto Rican superhero, and that’s if I could find one at all. Last but not least we have Diversity of Genre. I think this might be the most important of all three of the revelations McCloud covers. Not everyone is interested in super hero comic, and no one wants to read the same concept, idea, and story line in every comic. I get that the “great” comics writers like Alan Moore can’t really have great new ideas because it is hard to make a living, but hell why can’t he just get a job at McDonalds and still give us great ideas on the weekend. I think that if comics are going to be about making money and not about doing what you love to do, they might be doomed!

1 comment:

  1. You raise a lot of very interesting points, Amber. Why can't we have more than just big boobed young women kicking ass without losing all their clothes? Why don't we have a Puerto Rican superhero? And why doesn't the "artistic" creator just get a day job?

    I'm glad you're asking the big questions, but keep in mind what we can learn from McCloud suddenly discovering female creators had always been there. Maybe we can find instances of these other situations. I think you'd find that even the best webcomic creators are lucky to post one new page a week because they have day jobs or are still university students. Let's not forget that Wonder Woman regularly kicks ass--even Superman's when the occasion calls for it. And hey, the superhero my Master's Thesis is about is a Mexican American :-)

    Aside from pointing out this lack of diversity, I think McCloud is trying to inspire us to get out there and find it.