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June 15, 2009

I’ve been trying to come up with someways to shake things up on here. I tried that new style of reviews that really didn’t work for comics. For movies and games I think that I’ll keep it but not my regular stuff.

I think one problem is that with a lot of the comics I read I don’t analyze them for any cultural significance. Admittedly, with the web comics that I’ve reviewed, I really don’t care. Cultural significance for them is generally broader and not related to a single online comic. Penny Arcade is one of the few that actually affects millions outside of its reader base. That’s one.

Perhaps, I’ll muse over web comics in another post but not today.

With my book comics, which this summer (pending more free time) I plan to to review more of, there is a lack of analysis. Looking at some of my older posts about comics like Earth X and Midnight Nation I found my reviews to be sorely lacking.

Those two particular comics are extremely deep. Earth X even more so than Midnight Nation, which despite my love for it is a shallow God v. Devil Christianic story, it works but still. They could have benefitted from a more nuanced look at the story. One problem is that as a person who reads movie and game reviews I hate reviewers who give away too much plot.

I forgot a couple of important things:

1) Most of the graphic novels that I’m reviewing have been out for more than a couple of years. It’s not like I’m an on-top-of-the-times reviewer. I’m allowed to give away some of the plot. If you’ve never read the comic that I review, than I apologize. Still, it shouldn’t stop you from flipping through, especially if I give it good praise (not that I’m saying my opinion is the end all here).

2) You can’t analyze and explore themes if you don’t understand the plot and if I can’t convey even the basics to readers then my arguments are worthless.

My reviews of web comics will stay mostly the same. There isn’t much to web comics. Most are essentially newspaper dailies with cuss words and more blatant violence. Those that aren’t are newspaper dailies just online. The bigger story arc types could be reviewed with some analysis and I might consider looking at comics like Megatokyo and Looking For Group again to see what they’re doing thematically.

For the most part this is focused towards my graphic novel reviews. I don’t think I want them to be just reviews anymore. Some of them require a more filling look. I’m not an English major, nor do I read the books they read so I’ll probably miss a lot of literary connections but I would look to come at them with a more critical eye for what they’re doing as stories.

I might just come back to Earth X and Midnight Nation sometime this summer to give them a more in depth look that they should have gotten way back when.

If you have suggestions or critiques please, don’t hesitate to comment. I’m always open for discussion of my methods and the material that I look at.

See you on Wednesday (I’d tell you what I have planned but I don’t know),


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