22 February 2012

Life As We Know It

A man once gave a speech in front of an incredibly tenacious crowd, his words rang in their ears and continued to be heard long after his own life. This man knew he had something to say and hoped that it would make an impact,  "I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: 'We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal", Martin Luther King Jr. Although Scott McCloud is no Martin Luther King, he too has something important to say. In Martin Luther King Jr's speech, he is fighting for the end of racism and the beginning of equality. In Reinventing Comics by Scott McCloud, he goes over the long term goals that Comic Professionals had hoped to reach. During the years of 1984-1994 comics had hit there peak, which made these goals short lived. Scott McCloud believes that comics can be reinvented at any time and that diversity in creators and genre will only help comics make a comeback. There are 9 goals that were agreed upon: comics as literature, comics as art, creators' rights, industry innovation, public perception, institutional scrutiny, gender balance, minority representation, and diversity of genre. These goals all focus on acceptance of comics as a medium and art form(Cartoons and literature), diversity of gender,genre, and race. Chapter 1 of Reinventing Comics is a call to action, asking comic readers and creators to start moving outward instead of forward, which means to focus on one of the 9 goals. The Twelve Revolutions is similar to Chapter 2 of Understanding Comics, in both chapters McCloud writes about the diversity of comics and the different genres that comics can have. In chapter 2 of Understanding Comics, The Picture Plane shows the difference between reality and meaning, which so happens to be the difference between pictures and text. In The Twelve Revolutions, McCloud describes how he sees the future to be: comics are an art form along with communication medium- comics are also a form of spoken word. In both chapters McCloud proves that comics are a form of art along with text. McCloud wrote his first book to give his audience an introduction to comics, his second book will play off of his first one and focus on describing comics in external life. Although McCloud hasn't passed away and maybe comics slowly dying isn't as serious as public racism(opinion), he to may someday see comics reach their 9 goals or at least be  the spark to start the fire. 

Reinventing Comics seems like it shares similar themes to Understanding Comics, although this book focuses on the goals of the hand holding the pen behind the comic. The first book was meant to open the readers eyes to comics, there is a comic for everyone- because there is a diversity of genres, and culture behind them. The 9 goals that were set by comic creators are not incredibly far from reach, although there needs to be an audience to rise up and take action and achieve them. Comics fall in comparison to other forms of art, but it is important to remember that they have evolved and will continue to evolve and it is not fair to rule out that they wont make a come back in years to come. I believe comics can be similar to clothing, clothes from the 80's has recently made a comeback- things that many people would have thought silly about a decade ago. As long as there is a positive movement behind whatever is trying to be reintroduced, it is possible.  


  1. I agree with your point about the clothing from the eighties. Things from the past do come back, if the influence is there. If comics can get the right influence from the right people, then they can make a comeback.
    I also liked how you related McCloud's book (or his fight and drive) to Martin Luther King Jr. I honestly never thought of that, and thought you made a clever connection.

  2. Interesting post.

    I don't see how the 12 revolutions (not 9) relates to chapter 2, however. You need to be more explicit in relating texts to one another.