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Tuesday, November 09, 2021 

Australian comic publisher makes mistake of doing work for Netflix-airing products

The Australian Star Weekly interviewed Shaun Keenan, an independent publisher working Down Under, who's got a pretty successful business, but decidedly chose the wrong sci-fi comics to adapt, based on which network they're screening:
Since starting his own company COMICS2MOVIES in 2007, Shaun’s work has evolved from designing sketches based on movie posters, to creating his own anthology that is currently the number one selling independent comic in Australia.

Next year, the Gisborne resident will release a graphic novel adaptation made to accompany the Occupation film franchise, a trilogy of sci-fi films available to viewers on Netflix around the world.

“Everytime I talk about it, I can’t help but smile,” he said.
I can't bring myself to smile entirely, based on his choice to adapt stuff airing on a streaming channel I've noted before is hopelessly pretentious, and has very few redeeming values. Also, if he's adapting movies, or making his comics look like them, that's not a great idea, as some people like veteran Roy Thomas have argued already.

I also noticed he cited an artist who's since been slighting his own style in an era of political correctness:
Growing up in Melbourne’s north in the 1980s, Shaun feasted on the classic comic books of Jim Lee from an early age.
I wonder how he feels now that Lee, whenever he does draw, appears to have watered down the proportions of his artwork for the women, in example? And as I may have mentioned before, I find it terribly galling how Lee's specialized in drawing Batman-related art more than Superman, a franchise that's become a neglected stepchild, sacrificed of recent to more PC mentality. If Lee now believes in wokeness, one has to wonder how easy it'll be to call his past work "classic".

The article also mentions:
As Shaun describes it, the first challenge became learning the ins and outs of what goes into writing a comic book.

For example, unlike a novel, which is written with minute detail, comics are shorter in length and captured through individual frames.
I think this is flawed. Depending what publishing approach is in focus, it's entirely possible to craft a whole graphic novel in paperback or hardcover that's long in length, far more so than monthly pamphlets.
Popular sci-fi, fantasy and action film producers started to employ graphic novelists to bring script ideas to life. Films such as 300 and The Umbrella Academy were all investing in comics to accompany their releases.
And this alludes to the aforementioned elephant in the room of comics designed to resemble movies, to their disadvantage. Keenan also mentions Kickstarter crowdfunding, and:
Earlier this year, Hollywood star Keanue Reeves launched his own comic series BRZRKR on the platform, and it has since become the most pledged item in the site’s history, with over $1.4 million earned in donations.
And based on its violent, dark nature, that's why I consider it one of the most overrated, unnecessary productions around. At the end:
“There is no clear pathway at the moment, and a lot of talent ends up going overseas. The idea is to be able to retain that talent, and I’ve always prided myself on making sure my artists are paid for their work.

“There’s that misconception that when you talk about comics you’re only talking about superheroes.

“But what people don’t realise is that comics and graphic novels can be just as diverse as people are from one another.”
He's right about that. Of course, PC advocates who consider animation only a children's medium to boot are just as guilty of pushing the misconception about. One sure thing, if we're talking about Australian writers going abroad, one he needn't feel he has to hire is Tom Taylor, who's already tarnishing the aforementioned Superman franchise with a far-left ideological viewpoint that makes even the most questionable stories of the Golden/Silver/Bronze/Iron Ages look tame by comparison. Such writers and artists don't do the medium any favors or improve its reputation.

I wish Keenan good luck with his company over in Oz, but I think it's better to try and refrain from making it look as though developing comics to resemble movies, or adapting them, just isn't the best way to go with the whole medium, and actually waters it down considerably. When will most publishers understand this?

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  • I'm Avi Green
  • From Jerusalem, Israel
  • I was born in Pennsylvania in 1974, and moved to Israel in 1983. I also enjoyed reading a lot of comics when I was young, the first being Fantastic Four. I maintain a strong belief in the public's right to knowledge and accuracy in facts. I like to think of myself as a conservative-style version of Clark Kent. I don't expect to be perfect at the job, but I do my best.
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