Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Change Comics Can Cash In On
Over the last year, my enthusiasm for comics has started to wain. What was once my number one entertainment media love, has become a passing interest. And while this isn't the only reason, it sums up a lot of them. Everyone is putting Obama in their damn books. Comic publishers can be so damn short sighted, milking the creative cow until it is dead, and this is just one more example.
President Obama has been in COUNTLESS comics, and there is probably no end in sight. It started with his own biographical comic, to then appearing in the pages of Savage Dragon, Spider-man, Youngblood, and now both Conan and Army of Darkness mini-series. Seriously. And people are buying them!
I understand the historical magnitude of his election and the superhero-esque appeal he has. I understand that now, as a public official, using his likeness is free. And I understand each of these are selling, and that the gimmick can pay off. My point is, I thought, as a medium, we were past this. And this time, even more than the reflective surfaces of the covers during the 90's, this Obama comic craze is missing the forest for the trees.
Whether you like him or not, Obama's message was one that comics could really benefit from. Change. Figure out what isn't working and bring in something new that can fix it. Excite the masses again, not just your base. Get the younger generation involved.
Whether Obama has held up to those promises or is for another time. What I am saying is, instead of putting the man on the cover, find your OWN Obama to save the medium. Because each year that goes by, printed comics are losing ground. The talent that could produce great stories are going elsewhere. And the audience, that could love it like I did, and I still do, is each day forgetting comics even exist outside of the movie theater.
Don't just be inspired by the money you can make off of him, be inspired by the example that was set by him.