On Business: Frank Zappa on 'Mainstream' Comics

By | Monday, April 04, 2016 1 comment
I was recently reminded of this interview with Frank Zappa from the 1980s.
Now, rewatch it again but replace any references to music executives with comic executives.

Although it was specifically how Marvel handled many of its primary characters that initially got me off "mainstream" comics (which, by the way, is a term I really hate since it's horribly inaccurate on several levels, but I don't have anything comparable to replace it with) there was already a lot of stuff I avoided because it wasn't very interesting. Re-hashes of other stories I'd already read.

What's more interesting, to me, is to see these small, independent creators using their own voices to craft their own stories, not because they think they'll get rich off them, but because they have a burning passion to tell them. The business model is riskier for them; their works are far from the sure bet that Batman or the X-Men are. They're also riskier for the audience; I have a pretty good idea what I'm getting when I pick up a Spider-Man comic -- not so much when I get one by an unknown creator about an unknown property.

People have been making analogies between the comics and music industries for years now and, while they're not exact parallels, there's often something we can learn from looking at one and applying the thinking to the other. Zappa wasn't talking about comics at all, but he may as well have been.
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Ewell said...

One of the best things I've seen on the internet in a while.