Friday, April 4, 2008

Quote of the Day/Ramble of the Morning

"Well, that was a disappointment. The first issue of Marvel’s Secret Invasion mini-series wasn’t nearly as dreadful as I’d hoped. It’s not good by any standard I currently hold for comics, but it’s far from the stupidest thing I’ve ever read." - David Welsh

If you want to ruin your enjoyment of the vast majority of comics, the quickest way to do it is to start writing reviews for them. It's even faster than approaching them as a would-be pro. One thing I discovered writing the Skewed Perspectives reviews for the Happy Harbor site--rediscovered, actually--is that writing a negative review is much easier than writing a positive one. Why? Because the act of dissecting a given piece of work to such a degree that you can get into the details of what worked and was good requires one to approach it in an unnatural way--to examine it rather than experience it. And the deeper the examination, the more flaws you'll almost inevitably find (I assume that'd be the case even if one weren't predisposed towards dwelling on the negative, but I could be wrong.)

That's actually why I stopped writing reviews and started doing Previews picks instead--it had gotten to the point where I wasn't enjoying reading almost all the comics I was reading and I was sick of talking about stuff I wasn't enjoying. At least with Kid Drew's YOU WANT TO BUY THIS! I can focus on the positive--what at least looks good, even if it ultimately turns out not to be.

In light of all the above, it should come as no surprise that I have nothing but admiration for those reviewers who somehow manage to stay in the game (even those who don't stay in it, really. Just making the effort counts for something.) They provide an invaluable service to me--I'm fairly in the loop on what's going on in comics from all my online trawling, but it's rare that I'll actually pick up something new unless someone I respect recommended it. There’s no way to know for sure, of course, but I suspect a lot of comics, esp. those by untested creators, owe a substantial percentage of their sales to the efforts of folks like Randy Lander, Johanna Draper-Carlson, and The Savage Critics.

(David Welsh quote found via Dirk Deppey's !journalista!)


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