Strip News

As you read this, I’m recovering from this year’s first blizzard. In a parallel way, the comic goings-on this week is a blizzard of discussion on the future of comics.

  • But first: The Webcomic Beacon is a year old! Congrats!
  • One of the big topic clumps is the future of comics…Here’s an article that talks about what comics can’t continue to do. In the comments of the PW Beat digital or paper debate, the opening quotes reference how comics are (basically) on the losing side of the celebrity/movie cross promotion bonanza of late. There should be some way for comics themselves to gain some promotion out of the deal. Don’t get me wrong,  DC and Marvel are getting good money for their IP but if superhero comic books die out that movie money will dry up too. In the comments, Not-That-Bill-Cunningham called us all to task for being overly concerned about the print vs digital divide. He’s right. Print and digital are just the channels of comic  transmission and they will complement one another in different ways. Further, he has spot-on advice for getting through this time of change – which most of us are already doing but newspapers really aren’t able to do.
  • Courtesy of Journalista, the Occasional Superheroine weighs in with
  • even more good advice – don’t miss that. Further, comic veterans probably have the resources to weather whatever changes are going to happen.
  • The Floating Lightbulb reminds us that no one would sink millions dollars into webcomics without some specific business motive in mind. While it’s hard to fathom exactly how the big two could squeeze the little guy out of the internet, let’s not keep blinders on either.
  • The Webcomic Overlook reminds us that, once upon a time, interactivity was supposed to be all the rage on this internet thing. I’ll just say, for the record, that simply adding voice overs and animating the comic plays more to screen watchers than those who want to be interactive.
  • And while we’re improving the comic medium, let’s not neglect our writing. Could you write the story of a broken engagement without using those three little words? (Clue: one word is abbreviated.)
  • As you know, the comic book world today is full of cross overs and drawn out storylines. I’m leery of being critical of folks who earn their living publishing comics, but I think that book selling approach is too fragmented for most readers. Case in point: We still really don’t know how Batman RIP will end even though the story has ended in the book.
  • Doesn’t this look like a fun science book? How much more science would kids learn if it was presented as something other than dry text?
  • Assorted news: Digital Comics News is moving. Sort of. And something new: Rip Haywire.
  • Finally, I’ve been having some issues with wordpress conflicting and hanging lately, along with a lot of updating. The newest release (2.7) may solve the problems I’ve been having. Still, while I am pretty fluent with css and some php, it is not the easiest thing to customize. It is fortuitous for me that TFL has had posts on  wordpress and movable type to review.


  1. Re: comics and drawn out storylines. The article, which mentioned trade paperbacks as a main driver in the lengthening of storylines, should have included another factor: artists are more or less on equal footing nowadays with writers. Rather than clogging up pages with dialogue and little text boxes (look at those early issues of Fantastic Four, for example), Western artists now take a page from manga and take their time showing the sequences take place. It’s not enough for Captain America to just sock his first into a bad guy anymore; you’ve got to see him throw the guy over his back, see close-ups of the emotions in their faces, watch as they come to a standstill… those things. It’s something that struck me while reading Astonishing X-Men … the TPB was an incredibly quick read, but the pages were packed with more artistic nuances.

    Still not a fan of those massive crossovers, though. Marvel and DC need to cool it for 2009.

  2. ooh. Good point. I enjoy stories that are not in too big of a rush so I can enjoy the art and the writing. I’m not sure why writers can’t stick with a series for a year and let a big character story unfold. They seem to get itchy feet before they can complete an arc.

    It’s too bad the big two have crossover frenzy. I suspect it will continue, though.

  3. Another great blog entry. wow! one year for Webcomic Beacon? nice! I still have a long way to go to reach that point 😉

    I followed up on all of links you provided. It definitely gave me good ideas to help my webcomics. Thanx!!!

  4. Thanks! I’m always hopeful that folks get something useful out of the posts.

    Only nine months to go before American Otaku hits a year. Hang in there. :)

    I have too many favorite comics to read them regularly, so I make it a point to go back and catch up periodically.

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