The comic blogosphere seems to grow larger every day and just like comics, sometimes it’s pretty easy to get a little lost. “Meanwhile…” will act as your map pointing out what interesting discussions are happening out there while you’re reading Blog@Newsarama.
Everyone seemed to love all the controversy last week, but sadly there wasn’t much in the way of arguments, backstabbing, and in-fighting this week. I apologize to all of you. I guess most bloggers took out their frustrations during the holiday by making things go explodey and drinking heavily instead of attacking each other over petty arguments and rivalries. Stupid holiday screwing everything up. On with the links!
Marketing the Man of Steel
Guy Le Charles Gonzelez has written an interesting article on why Superman Returns isn’t doing as well as everyone hoped it would and says it all has to do with marketing.
For all the misdirected attention the alleged gay undertones in Superman Returns may have received in the mainstream press, that was a mere sidenote to what really hobbled the film’s chances for mega-success: questionable casting decisions and a lack of focus in its early marketing and PR efforts.
Regardless of what those who’ve seen Superman Returns think about Brandon Routh and Kate Bosworth’s actual performances, they were convicted in the court of public opinion as being too young and lacking credibility for their respective roles before the first official review was filed. That’s a difficult perception to overcome, and it didn’t help that the initial marketing efforts for the movie were either too vague, leaning on Superman’s iconic status (which many felt Routh was ill-equipped to personify) while ignoring the fact that for many, he represents an old-fashioned, Pollyanna-ish perspective on life; or, it was too focused on the romantic angle of the story, a deathwish for both superhero movies and summer action blockbusters.
Bryan Singer himself doomed the movie to negative pre-conceptions by calling it his “first chick flick”, a phrase he’d repeat in numerous interviews, with and without qualification, leading up to its release.
Go read, now. He brings up a few more interesting points and I don’t want to block quote the whole article.
Ok I Lied. Here are the dust-ups this week.
One argument flared up over at the Absorbascon with Scipio’s post entitled “Evil Woman!”.
I will believe a man can fly. It is substantially more difficult for me to believe that women are as likely as men to put on a costume and fight crime. That’s the kind of self-aggrandizing theatrics driven by a savior complex that I associate with the typical flaws of men, not of women.
The comments section exploded with all kind of scientific theories, people disputing those theories, studies disputing the disputed theories, and threats of violence. The argument even spread to Lisa’s blog. Personally I think the argument ended at Scipio’s blog whenever someone threatened violence on his person. So it’s a good thing that Lisa started up a thread on her own site. Too bad the things just went in circles for the rest of the discussion. Oh, well, that’s life.
I enjoy Scipio’s blog because of posts like this one on the need for Word Balloons on Covers, or this one where he lists some cool villains who happen to be women rather than reading long arguments that don’t have any resolution anyway.
Oh, I almost forgot the second bit argument that popped up in an unlikely place this week. There was a minor argument over on Mike’s blog between Laura and Tom The Dog over Girl Genius and it’s publishing plan. I think everything is ok now, or at least I hope so. Mike’s blog is usually full of rainbows and happy thoughts. If you ask Dorian he’ll tell you this isn’t the real Mike and is all an act, but I don’t know if I believe him.
Issues? Here’s Your Issues!
Johanna has some interesting thoughts about Batgirl from after participating in Didio’s DC Panel at Heroes Con.
However, I also found the new Batgirl an interesting character and I liked reading about her. But you’ve turned her into a one-note villain and killed her.”
Didio started in on his standup act at that point, saying “oh, you think she’s dead?” and talking to the other panelists about how there’s still lots of story to be told. That wasn’t the interesting part (at least, to me).
The interesting part was when he launched into a lecture on how if you don’t know the character’s past, you can’t write stories that make sense in their future. He thought the company went the wrong way making her “softer and smoother”, and they needed to bring her back to her past as the daughter of Cain and Shiva. (Which mention sent Greg Rucka off about how much he hated what’s been done with Shiva, presumably in Birds of Prey.)
Why is it, I wonder, that only female DC characters are defined in terms of their parentage? (Male characters are more often defined in terms of their dead parents: Superman, Batman, Martian Manhunter.) Is it a way of keeping them in a child-like state longer? I can’t even think of any currently active male characters who have superhero or well-known parents.
This post about the lack of women creators at the San Diego Comic Con has also been making the rounds.
Leave it to IGN to commit a faux pas by writing another one of those how to get your girlfriend to read things she doesn’t want to read articles.
The Blogosphere is Filled With Badassery
Yes, I said Badassery. If you are offended by this fake word, please skip to the next bold faced word. The ISB, a bastion of badass thought and general badassery, held what is known throughtout the comic blogosphere as Badass Week, a quest to find the toughest man in comics. This is nothing like Lisa’s version of Bad Ass Week, but instead is a manly man’s version of Badass Week. In the end only one badass can take the art of badassery to undreamt of heights. Remember behind every male badass there is a female badass waiting to put him in his place. For some misplaced wannabe badassery that crosses into lameassery please check out Ye Olde Comick Booke Blogge’s guide to Warrior, the comic series written by The Ultimate Warrior. This ends the use of the word ass in this column. Thank you.
All The Colors of The Rainbow
You may remember Chris Tamarri’s Next Wave Crayon Butchery Edition Challenge from a while back where he asked for interesting words that he would interpret and use to color each page of the book. Well, he’s done with it and it is magnificent.
Hey, maybe we can start some controversy. He does say the following quote in response to Dave Campbell’s suggestion after all.
Dave Campbell, proprietor of Dave’s Long Box and ill-minded bastard, apparently, offers the word “catamenia,” a clinical term for the, uh, curse of Eve, if you will, a woman’s monthlies. The menstrual cycle, if you know what I mean. Some of you might think it tasteless, both in suggestion and in my acceptance thereof. And it probably is, tasteless as a rice sandwich. But you know what’s not tasteless? Come on, say it with me…
Anypants, what I’ve done here is, perhaps predictably, used a lot of red. (It’s not rocket surgery, people.) I chose this page to represent the idea for two reasons. First, it features all three female members of the book’s regular cast, all those who suffer from this epidemic affliction. Second, it also features murderous koala bears, an apt metaphor for a woman in her time of bifortnightly crisis in that they’re cute on the outside, but filled with destructive intent.
(Some of you might say “Hey! Dude! Aren’t you worried that this will garner some negatively impassioned responses?” And I reply that there are two things that I’ll let no woman defer. One is my doubtless impending celibacy. And the other rhymes with “tart.”)
You should have colored pages with my suggestions. Seriously, go take a look at the project, it’s a pretty fun idea.
Fabio Moon creating a web comic? I’ll be keeping an eye out for it.
Mini-Comics can be cool! Just ask Shawn Hoke!
Can Metatext be overused? Check out the discussion.
Collected Editions is a cool blog for those waiting for the trade.
Illustration Site of The Week
This week’s site is BBWW: The Fat Wonder Woman Blog which features a slightly larger than life Wonder Woman drawn by artists such as Carla Speed McNeil, Mike Manley, Corey Lewis, and many others.