Originally posted by BATFAN:
hmm, if i want to be entertained by someone telling stories about life thru their personal experiances, i'd rather watch a comedian.
This, I think, gets to the heart of my biggest hang-ups about the sorts of stuff that Journalistas are into.
Some types of stories, in my opinion, work better in other media than as comics.
Take Blade of the Immortal, for example. If there isn't an anime series based on it, there should be. The concept of an assassin with a healing factor going around killing crooks in feudal Japan in order to fulfill a vow kicks serious keister. However... the decompressed pacing of the comics make them incredibly frustrating as single issues, and the samurai action is often reduced to blurry speed lines and unclear storytelling. As a cartoon, it would be sort of like Samurai Champloo with more fighting. As manga... it gets boring after a while even if you're reading it in trade paperbacks.
A lot of comics that fall into the broad category of "anything but superheroes" tell genre stories that would be more satisfying to me as prose novels, because a lot more exposition could be used, or as films because some movement would make the action scenes a lot more exciting.
As interesting as Fight For Tomorrow was, just for instance, I would much rather watch a Jet Li movie than read a Vertigo comic about illegal mixed martial arts fights. The art by Denys Cowan and Kent Williams was really cool, but the comics form creates distance and doesn't offer the same visceral thrill as seeing a real Wu Shu expert beating the crap out of thirty guys with a pair of billy clubs.
The whole point of reading it seems to be the novelty of, "Wow. Vertigo never did a kung fu movie-style comic before!" That's fine, but most people would be better off just renting Enter the Dragon.
A film noir comic by Bendis or Frank Miller isn't as satisfying as a film noir film even though all that black on the page creates a distinctive look that has some charms.
I've enjoyed a lot of slice of life-ish indie movies... but that kind of stuff usually bores the crap out of me as comics. Stuff that would work great as a sitcom episode just leaves me wondering, "Did I really just read an entire comic about a young woman saving up money for a couch?"
So, the question is this: Is it really advancing the art form when people are doing half-assed versions of stuff that would be more effective in another medium?"
I think the "But is it art?" question is easier to answer when talking about something that could only work as well as it does in the form of a comic book.
Watchmen, The Adventures of Luther Arkwright and Red Rocket 7 all use conventions that would be familiar to superhero fans to tell stories with a lot more substance than your typical mainstream comic. And they do so using visuals that would only work as comic book art. To me, that's a lot more interesting than "This comic is sort of like the first season of 'The L Word.' But with cartoony black and white artwork."