Grant Morrison needs no introduction. His influence on comics the last 20 years is renowned. The man has obviously seen and been through a lot in this industry and yesterday’s interview posted on Rolling Stone revealed a lot of what that is.
Two things caught my eye right away. One was his estranged relationship with one-time protege:
“When he got the Authority book, his star started to rise, and at that point, he felt he was in my shadow and he had to get out, and the way to get out was to do this fairly uncool split. It was quite hard, I felt, but he had to make his own way, and he was in denial that I’d been there, because I saw a lot of his work had been plotted or devised, even dialogue suggestions were done by me right up until the point of The Ultimates. It was seen by him as a dimunition of his position, even though it wasn’t, I was quite proud of him as a mentor… “
“There’s a very good chance of running into him, and I hope I’m going 100 miles an hour when it happens.”
Yowsers. Clearly, there’s some animosity there, something I was not privy to. Good point though that Millar’s style seem to become his own once he worked on Ultimates. It’s that summer blockbuster action-oriented style we’ve come to associate with Millar nowadays in works like Ultimates, Wanted, and Kick-Ass.
The other thing that caught my eye was his take on the slow death of comics:
“The definition of a meme is an idea that wants to replicate, and it’s found a better medium through which to replicate: games and movies. It would be a shame, because as I said in the book, one of the most amazing things about those universes is that they exist, there’s a paper continuum that reflects the history, but people don’t die, it’s like the Simpsons, people don’t age, they just change…”
“With comics, the quality now is better than it’s ever been, there are more people now who are really good at what they do, doing what they do. Everything’s available for free, I think that’s the real problem, nobody wants to buy it anymore. One comes out, you see it immediately online and you can read it. That’s the way people want to consume their information, the colors look nicer. I think that’s more the problem, but that’s a problem for everybody, it’s not just for comics, everyone’s going to start feeling that one.”
Morrison, of course, is only speaking at one or two issues that are why comics are slowly fading away, but good points nonetheless. It’s the same difficulty Marvel and DC have been having with all of their movies this last decade in terms of getting readers to come to comics. Why pay for a weekly fix of books at $3-4 a book when you can get the same enjoyment out of paying $10 for a movie and owning the DVD/Blu-ray at $20 forever? Obviously, everybody has their tastes, but it’s a problem nonetheless that the industry is struggling with. One can only hope DC knows what they’re doing, as the countdown to re-launch hits 8 days now.
The 1st CBF podcast of the new year brings a special guest in Jon Stump, a frequent guest on the Comics Round Table podcast. We go into what we’re looking forward to the most in 2011 as far as comic books go from the plethora of comic book movies coming out this summer to the big event books coming out from DC and Marvel.
Then we switch gears and talk about a very controversial move Diamond and iVerse are making together in terms of a digital initiative that they believe will “benefit” both the print and digital areas of comics. To take it one step further, we also discuss comments from Mark Millar about slowing down on the digital scene until publishers and distributors can get their act together. This one is very interesting and makes you wonder if we’re going about the digital initiative all wrong.
Sign off on your thoughts in the comments section or on our Twitter account.
My deepest sympathies to my wallet last week – it cried and went into the fetal position knowing how many books it had to get. Then I showed it the latest issue of Thanos Imperative and all was well. Fantastic space saga as one would expect in the capable hands of Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning. Lots of character growth, great-looking battles, and unexpected twists. I have no idea what’s happening to the Marvel cosmic universe once this ends next month.
Too many other books to talk about, but I do highlight some goodies:
- This guy named Bruce Wayne is supposedly coming back if you look at the 10+ books that came out last week bearing his name. All of the Bruce Wayne : The Road Home one-shots were way under my radar, but it was good to see Return of Bruce Wayne back to form and taking us one step closer to what happens when a ticking time bomb gathering Omega energy returns to modern times. I’m sure there won’t be any pizza parties.
- If you’re not done with DC zombies, then Untold Tales of Blackest Night will satisfy your hunger. Apparently, we need to find out what happened to Donna Troy, Scarecrow, Animal Man, and a bunch of nobodies during last year’s epic Blackest Night event. As is the case with anthology books, you get your hits and your misses. Probably for the hardcore.
- Mark Millar is not done getting movies green-lighted as soon as new series of his comes out. Superior #1 came out (you can check out the preview for #2 here) and it definitely is not the most controversial of books if you’ve read Nemesis lately. Touching story so far of a kid with Multiple Sclerosis who is given one magic wish by a space monkey to become the super hero character he grew to love on the big screen. Yes, I did type all that AND said it was touching. Take that for what it is.
A little movie came out this weekend about donkeys that get kicked. Sad, sad story…
Provided you can get past the ultra-violence (though the book did much worse) and potty-mouth, this is an excellent adaptation of Mark Millar and John Romita Jr’s comic mini-series that asks the question – what if a real person decided to become a superhero? The answer is he’d be great at karaoke bars. Or if that doesn’t work, he’d be great at getting in way over his head, as Kick-Ass finds out the hard way when he enters the world of the mob. He also finds out that Big Daddy and Hit-Girl overtook him as the stars of this movie too.
Spoilers abound here. Impressive stuff – go check it out before Iron Man comes and smacks it around…
You got ketchup on your face…
This is an interesting series if you haven’t heard about it as of late. Mark Millar and Steve McNiven, who have both collaborated on Marvel’s Civil War and Old Man Logan storylines, are back together one more time to bring a new series to Marvel’s Icon line of books. This particular book though turns us upside down though (as you’d expect from a Millar story) with the main character being the antagonist and having many Batman and Joker qualities intertwined. Think it this way – what if Bruce Wayne still had his riches and turned out to be the Joker?
The whole story about it is here. The concept sounds good, though if they do decide to turn this into a movie, will Hollywood mess around with it to the point that we get a debacle like the “Wanted” movie? And will Millar have to change things around too in the book after DC fired their shots detailed in this article.
Fire away those comments, folks…