Monday, January 09, 2006

Erik Larsen and Comic Books

Yeah I'm more comic books and pop culture this week.

Anyway just finished reading Erik Larsen's column from last week, in his very inaccurately titled column, "One Fan's Opinion." I grant that Larsen is a fan of his comic books; but he doesn't seem a big fan of many others.

For those of you who don't know Larsen, he had quite a good run on Spider-Man and he is the creator of the Savage Dragon. Many of his columns can be read as a guy grumbling that his creation doesn't yet have the same catchet of Spider-Man or Wolverine. This was most clear in in an article in September, in which he called his fellow comic book creators pathetic (for writing Spider-Man and Wolverine), and in October when he attacked Peter David (for responding to the previous column at his website (to be fair, he didn't name Peter David, he simply said, "Sure, a couple guys went off on it in their blogs, but nobody had the stones to actually confront me about it either in person, by phone or by e-mail.

There's a word for people like that. It's on the tip of my tongue. Perhaps a look back at that column might give you a clue what word I mean.

Anyway, Larsen's big thesis is that most of the comic books people actually buy are crap. That's not to say he hasn't made some good point. Certainly there are some comic books that really suck or that seem to have no purpose. But I don't get the idea, reading Larsen's columns, that his solution is for those comic books to improve. Rather his solution is for those comic's to be abandoned in favor of, well, Savage Dragon and other works by authors willing to create their own characters.

But, of course, I could be wrong.

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