23 February 2012

A Good Start

In the introduction of Scott McCloud’s second book Reinventing Comics McCloud goes over the peak and crash of comics, twelve long term, common, goals among comics professionals, and the direction in which he thinks comic should go. McCloud’s first major point in his introduction, entitled, “The Twelve Revolutions” was that comics were at their peak in the early eighties, but had a hard crash in the nineties. In his discussion of the downfall of comics McCloud presents twelve points which he calls revolutions that are essential to the evolution of comics. McCloud’s first revolution is that comics need to come to a point where they are recognized as important literature, and are worthy of study and acclaim. McCloud’s second revolution is that comics need to come to a point where they are recognized as a legitimate form of art, such as paintings and sculptures. McCloud’s third revolution has to do with creators’ rights, where the creators of comics should be able to control their own fate and make money on their comics.  McCloud’s fourth revolution is that comics need to be reinvented to a point where they can benefit both the consumer and the producer. McCloud’s fifth revolution is that the public perception of comics needs to improve to the point where the full potential of comics is being realized by the public, and when progress is being made the public recognizes the progress.  McCloud’s sixth revolution is that comics need to come to a point where institutions of higher learning and law overcome the negative connotations that are associated with comics and tread comics fairly. McCloud’s seventh revolution is that more females need to become associated with comics, instead of the male dominant culture that it is now.  McCloud’s eighth revolution is that comics need to come to appoint where a wider variety of people are associating and interesting themselves with them. The ninth revolution that McCloud presents is that comics need to gain a wider range in their genres, as opposed to their present state where adolescence and power fantasies are the norm.  Now the only problem with comics is that there is no new talent and not enough people with a passion for comics writing and or reading as there was. These first nine revolutions are only part one of McCloud’s book, he goes on to explain that part three consists of three more revolutions, all having to with computers. The first revolution of part two is digital production of comics, which basically mean comics being made on the computer. The second revolution of part two is digital delivery, which basically means that comics can and need to be delivered through the computer to be successful. And McCloud’s final revolution is that comics need to evolve in a digital environment to be successful. McCloud makes it clear that for comics to succeed and thrive the genre can no longer go one step forward and forget about the previous progressions that it made, but rather, the genre needs to expand on its successes in these twelve directions to reach their full potential.

In writing this introduction McCloud differs greatly from his writing style in his first book, Understanding Comics. It seems that this book is written at a much higher intellectual level than that of his last book. Understanding Comics was written as a much easier read, with less text and less complications within the text.
After reading this introduction I have come to realize that comics have seemingly unending potential, but I have also come to realize that comics will never reach their potential. I feel this way because comics already have a negative connotation attached to them, which will make it near impossible for them to move forward in substantially in the twelve areas that McCloud mentioned they need to move forward in.


  1. Do you really believe that comic books will not make a resurgence in popularity and purchase? I sort of agree, but I also sort of want to blame MTV for saturating the youth mind's with shows about house wifes fighting.

  2. I really don't think that comics can make the major strides that McCloud is talking about. Not that i don't think they will progress,but the strides that MCloud talks about are pretty serious. And right??...GTL...not.

  3. Not a bad post, Lucas, but how does RC relate to UC? That's a major aspect of this book.

    As we discussed in class, comics have already made most (if not all) of those major strides. What they lack is the readers :-/