Comic industry it’s not only for “peanuts”

when i was a little boy i was very into the comics world and i wanted to write them. I started to read american ones like Spider Man, or The X-men, then came the manga period, when i was about 15 or 16 i finally got into graphic novels. With the passing of years my passion slowly faded (indeed even the money did) but never disappeared and, when i got the chance, i don’t avoid in reading them.

A few days ago i read this interview to Tyler Weaver ( I did not know him or his work, which i’m gonna read as soon as i can, but this interview made me wonder if the comic industry is, at now, understimated and used just like a backup by greater media companies.

I mean, i know the budget for a videogame, a movie or a tv series is greater by far, but i don’t think comics deserve to stay at the margin of stories or used just like stockists for good stories (kind of what is happening with Marvel superheroes or with my beloved Walking Dead).

Rick's awakening both in the comic and in the tv series

Other examples can be the numerous prequels for great movies or videogames, or stories about secondary characters, that sometimes appear in form of comic just because of the long-tail rules. I’m a boy whose only experience is given by the tons of materials i read and i’ve got no data to support, i want to state that, but my opinion is that, at now,there are no big transmedia projects whom focus is on comics. The only ones are on platforms like kickstarter, but i don’t think their size is big enough to change this habit, but they are really good to explore the infinite possibilities of this medium and new kind of stories, like transmedia ones.

I think comic industry has in its dna (exactly because of its size and its fleetness if compared with other media industries) a better reactivity to changes and innovations. In 2008 for example the american Avatar Press started to weekly publish a six-page comic called Freakangels.

poster for Warren Ellis' comic Freakangels

From the name of Warren Ellis, the author of Transmetropolitan or Authority, just to give two titles, it is clear it is not a low-profile operation. Freakangels continued for 144 numbers, with the same high-quality of the start and also winning some awards. Is a good example of how comics and its industry are changing, trying new way of distribution and monetization, like the mangas model.

Transmedia storytelling is a method (?), an aestethic (???), a new way to conceive and telling stories (sounds more convincing), what is certain is that the borders are still far from being explored.

Comics can’t lose the possibilities of pulling the reins of this changing and be at the center of this revolution, but they cannot stay longer at the margin just getting peanuts.

ps. if you know projects or datas please report them.


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