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Friday, December 22, 2006 

Who dominates the industry today

I was looking over this post at CWR, wondering why the industry is unfriendly to women, where a commentor said:
I was recently thinking about why most comic books and their writers and artists are so awful and came up with the same conclusions you did for why the industry is so unfriendly to women. Many (though not all) of the men working in the industry grew up on comics and don’t seem to know much else, while talent in other professions tend to have worked in a professional capacity in a variety of ways, whether it be in journalism, teaching or corporate copy writing or design. Very rarely is this the case with comics. Plus it being such an insular world, mediocre talents like Brian Michael Bendis or Frank Miller are considered the cream of the crop and receive award after award, whereas in any other profession, they might not even be able to earn a living.
Well, that's a reasonable assumption, but wrong. In more ways than one.

A closer look at what the picture is like today would show you that the comics medium today suffers from a problem vaguely like what the BBC has. That is, they're dominated today by people who popped in from industries far different - movies (Geoff Johns), television (J. Michael Straczynski, Paul DeMeo), novels (Greg Rucka, Brad Meltzer), and even writers from Britain (Mark Millar, Grant Morrison, Warren Ellis, Paul Jenkins), whose left-leaning politics seem to overwhelm their desire to write something even remotely entertaining by today's standards. And many, if not all, of who've got no idea what made American comic books work well in the yesteryear, nor what could make them work today. They're also people who've got overly-liberal axes to grind, and are more concerned with multiculturalism than with traditional American values. And, some of the contempt for women they might have could very well have come with them from the medium where they first started, too.

And the whole notion that any of the men who worked in comic books have no ability to prove themselves in any other medium is erroneous too, because Gerry Conway, Marv Wolfman and Len Wein have all proven themselves capable of working in the movie and book biz, and probably succeeded much more than the movie and novel people who're going into comic books, by contrast.

It has mainly to do with dedication, and a clear understanding of what makes comic books work, no matter what audience they're aimed at.


About me

  • 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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