Call for Essays About Any Aspect of Popular Culture, Present or Past

RiskTakers

What were the risks inherent in making these comic books, both creative, and commercial? And who were the industry leaders? Who were the creators who blended together the commercial and the creative to produce the titles and the characters we still read today?

It was always risky business, putting words and pictures together and expecting an audience. When this first began, comics entwined itself with daily newspapers. But soon, the medium would find commercial expression for itself, as comicbooks. This summer, beginning by remembering the importance of the founding of Image Comics 18 years ago, PopMatters takes a hard, non-jaundiced look at comics culture. What were the risks inherent in making these books, both creative, and commercial? And who were the industry leaders? Who were the creators who blended together the commercial and the creative to produce the titles and the characters we still read today? RiskTakers, please RT.

Thursday, August 26 2010

Missed Directions Reboot: Assembling ‘Unthinkable’

Reading comics promotes specific psychic resiliences, ones that go beyond well beyond the comics page and carry on into civic discourse.


Wednesday, August 25 2010

Things Will Be Worse Now: John Reed and Breaking the Spell of History

With his most recent book, Tales of Woe, John Reed takes a creative and a commercial risk in producing a 'handmade alien object'.


Tuesday, August 24 2010

MAD’s Maddest Artist Gets Even: Don Martin Strikes a Blow for Creators’ Rights

In 1988, MAD's Don Martin helps set the stage for the move towards comics creators' rights in the '90s.


Pressing Issues: Wizard Press and the Trapeze of ‘90s Fan Culture

Following the apparent reconciliation between Wizard and Frank Miller in 2005, have issues are the publication's quality of journalism finally been settled?


Monday, August 23 2010

Swamp Monsters and Stoners: When Mainstream Comics Tuned In, Turned On and Dropped Out

Writer Steve Gerber's 39-issue run on Man-Thing exemplifies a crucial period in the development of comics: when the mainstream and underground collided.


Trail Blazers in the World of Academia

As we continue to enter this new era in which comics become more integrated into both the larger popular culture and the resulting professional areas that examine it, it is important to remember that until very recently it wasn’t always so.


Milagro: Image Comics Makes Creators’ Rights an Issue for a New Generation

Image Comics was the game-changer. Not only did they proactively assert their rights as creators, but instilled in those to follow, the notion of creator autonomy.


Sunday, August 22 2010

Life and Anti-Life: Kirby’s Fourth World Gambit

Already having established himself as the co-creator of the Marvel Universe, Jack "the King" Kirby, ran very little risk in moving to rival publisher DC. The gamble of producing a single story told over four distinct titles however, proved to be an incredible commercial challenge.


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