Monday, April 03, 2006

comics 2

It's fun to have my head in the 20th century. Spent most my life there. Part of the charm of the aged is their insistance on dated paradigms.

I think it's fun to be a paradigm mutant, with half your head in dead media, half your head in new (or imaginary) media. Keeps me keeping myself guessing. Comics are distinctly 20th century babies (that doesn't mean that they're dead!), and I don't think that comics (as we think of them) will survive much longer. You've got a new crop of youth who read and write 'webcomics', and find last century's masterpieces a little too spooky, a little too morbid. They want manga-informed lighter fare.

I'm a little bit interested in what they're doing, but like I said -- I've got half my head back in 1986. Anyway, what's the effectual difference between a Flash powered webcomic and a "video cartoon" on television? Audio?

Fact is, I don't like manga very much. I don't like anime very much -- except for a few golden greats, like Miyazaki and Otomo. But I realize that since I "don't like it" I don't pay close attention to it either -- which means I'm missing out on lots of wonderful work.

I say "you've gotta read this book!" to my friend and she says "but it's a comic book... I don't like comic books" ... and that's how I feel about manga... How am I ever going to find the gold if I don't start by sorting through the dross? I'm afraid I don't have lots of energy to spend sorting through manga dross.

(Tangent -- is manga a genre of comics, or a medium all its own? Are the visual and narrative styles so very variant from western "comics" that it should stand as its own medium? Are comics universal -- only one medium?)

I continue to wonder.

A few resources to remember --
Lots of uni. libraries have comics in their collections:
Comics holdings at Michigan State U:
Missouri School of Journalism comics and strips resources:
Yale's comics and graphic novel resources:
U of N. Carolina on GNs:
U of Buffalo:
et.c. et.c.
google advance: "library comics" turns up bijillions more. many w/ catalogs.
Plenty other good comics resources too:
IPL's comics links:
Comics Worth Reading:

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