Television Without Pity talked to DC editor Scott Nybakken (late of Fantagraphics and The Comics Journal) about today’s funnybooks, apparently looking for insight into superhero-comics-influenced shows like “Heroes” and “Lost.”
Nybakken: My perspective is that people in the [comics] industry regard it ["Heroes"] as an outgrowth of the increasing presence of comics in the entertainment industry as a whole, over the past 15 years, the number of comics-based material that has been turned into television shows and movies has been growing and growing and growing, and this is, like, the latest manifestation of it. And I think they regard it very highly because it actually is getting closer and closer to some of the better material that’s been done in comics in recent history.
Bunting: So this is viewed as a positive.
Nybakken: Oh, yeah, very much so.
Ironically, he doesn’t watch “Heroes”:
[t]he one episode I watched, every single line a character uttered was, to me, a cliché because I’d heard it a hundred times in different comics, and it just wasn’t interesting to me. But I think my reaction was probably more extreme; a lot of the people in the comics industry I’m sure recognize that these are clichés as well, but they enjoy them, so they don’t mind as much.
It’s a good read, consisting mostly of the participants’ thoughts on adapting superheroes to movies and TV (and vice versa, as with the Whedonverse). It also offers some insight into Nybakken’s job in DC’s collected-editions department. Oh, and he gets in a good Ken Burns joke on page 9.
Why exactly TWoP talked to him in particular is never really explained, and there are a couple of intriguing “[redacted]” notations (one about Watchmen memorabilia) but it sounds like a good time was had by all.