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Have Been Unavoidably Detained By The World

Expect Me When You See Me

eldarwannabe eldarwannabe
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I remember when I first learned this...
Things about the (American) comic book industry that should be common knowledge, but are not:

Yes, comic books are still being published today. And not just in those books you might see in Barnes and Noble. They are published in those little pamphlets you might associate with the second World War.

The vast majority of comic book in the United States are published by two main companies: Marvel Entertainment and DC Comics, commonly referred to as Marvel and DC.

Marvel publishes Spiderman, The Hulk, Iron Man, The X-Men, Thor, and many, many others.

DC publishes Batman, Superman, The Flash, Green Lantern, and many, many others.

Comic books are sent out once a week to comic book stores on Wednesdays. This is the day every week when a comic book fan will typically swing by his local comic book store to pick up that week's batch of issues.

Most comic book titles are published once a month - so every month, on one of the Wednesdays of that month, there will be a new issue of a specific title. (like Batman, or Spiderman.)

There are more comic books being published then you think there are.

There are also some smaller comic book publishing companies, like Dark Horse, Image, Slave Labor Graphics, etc. They tend to not be as superhero-focused as the big two.

Comic books do NOT have to be about Superheroes, that's just a common genre in the medium

I almost guarantee you are using the term "graphic novel" wrong.

Yeah, those stories you had to read for school, like Maus and Persopolis? Those are comics too. Get over it.

Manga are also comics. So are manwha. Get over it.

For that matter, Archie comics are still comics, even though they are socially acceptable.

Yes, the term "comics," is a bit generic and definitely a misnomer. Thus is language. If you really want, you can call them "sequential art."

And for the last time, it's a MEDIUM, not a genre. To say "I don't like comics books" holds about as much water as "I don't like movies." You mean, you don't like movies at all? This isn't to say there are no people who simply do not enjoy any movies in the slightest, who find the whole idea abhorrent. But it's unlikely.

Nice list, there should probably be a subsection of the properties that were originally comic books, I'm sure it would surprise some people.

I don't know if it should be common knowledge which characters are Marvel and which are DC. Even a dozen of their most popular characters would confuse non-comic folk.

Good point, but I'll admit to being less than savvy about many of the properties that were once comics. I can rattle off some (300, Sabrina...) but I don't know that many. Any suggestions?

And I think that people should at least know, say, the top three characters of DC and Marvel. I mean, if the Avengers actually makes it to a movie, and someone asks, "Hey, where's Superman/Batman? Isn't this movie about a superhero team?" I'd have to spin around and correct them.

I just found out Josie and the Pussycats was an Archie comic before it was a cartoon. Movies like Men in Black and Road to Perdition began as comic books too. I don't know how many people know that Swamp Thing used to be a comic book. I'd throw in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles too and many popular anime characters who, technically, started out in comics.

I think movies have a little longer to go. Hollywood leans too far on the grim and gritty street level heroes and not enough on hardcore superheroes that anyone other than Spider-Man, X-Men, and the Hulk can really define Marvel. Iron Man was a step in the right direction, it'll be enough to separate them from the DC stuff people default to.

MIB started as a comic? I feel like I should have known this. On the other hand, I never even heard of Swamp Thing until I read the Alan Moore comic.

Do people default to DC? I know that Superman and Batman might be the Bit Two in America, but Spiderman is waaay up there, and even before I even got into comic books I could have named the Hulk and Iron Man.

Speaking of the Iron Man movie, I maintain that it is the perfect comic book adaptation (or at least as close as we're ever likely to get) I really should make a post about that...

The Men in Black as a general concept existed long before, yeah, but I'm sure the movie came from the licensed comic property. Swamp Thing had a live action show and cartoon, I didn't realize he was a comic book until later.

You know, you may be right, I don't even know what people default to, maybe it's just defaulting to Superman. If they're a superhero, they probably know him, hang out with him, and are part of the same universe.

I loved Iron Man. I don't know if I'd go so far as to call it the perfect adaptation, I think some of the reason I enjoyed the movie so much because I'm not a huge Iron Man fan who expected so much (like Fantastic Four). I'd like to read that post, mind if I friend you?

Right, it's the assumption that all the superheroes can hang out together that gets to me. I feel like Marvel and DC are big enough that people should know the sketchy details about them, at least.

And you are totally welcome to friend me! May I friend you as well?

I should warn you, in all fairness, that I don't friends-lock a lot of stuff. Mostly things that I scribble down that aren't of a quality I want to be publically availible.

As to Iron Man...I just have to get that post done. I'm also not a huge Iron Man fan, but I think the movie was just great.

Let the mutual friending commence.