Robot 6

Quote of the Day | ‘These characters aren’t young’

“… more time has passed between John Constantine being created and now than between the creations of Hal Jordan and John Constantine. That is … I don’t know if that’s depressing or astonishing or what. These characters aren’t young. An era of comics that many of us think of as still ongoing is really receding in the rear view mirror.”

Tom Spurgeon, making me feel old

He’s right, though. I feel like we’ve given up on naming any “eras” of comics since the Bronze Age and, for the most part, that’s probably a good thing. I remember feeling pretty silly about it even in the ’80s as we were trying to figure out what to call the next one. But where that sort of thing was helpful was in reminding fans that comics (especially ongoing, serial comics) are generational and one generation’s tastes don’t necessarily get passed on to the next. It combated the part of getting older where we don’t realize that we’re getting older or that the things we like are getting older with us.

There’s nothing wrong with getting older as long as you’re not also getting tired, and that applies to characters as well as people. Not having read Hellblazer in a few years, I don’t know how energetic that comic has been lately and I certainly don’t know that making him exclusive to the tamer DC Universe is the solution to whatever problem DC perceived that the character had. But what I pull from Spurgeon’s comment is that it’s good to remember that things we like aren’t always still vital just because we still like them.

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Comments

5 Comments

“… things we like aren’t always still vital just because we still like them.”

Sorry, Michael, I don’t find any meaning in that statement. It’s like saying “that woman isn’t beautiful just because you think she’s attractive.” It’s like saying “that cheeseburger doesn’t taste good just because you think it’s delicious.”

I would argue that “new” does not mean “better”.

Huh, never really thought about that… Constantine is kind of the Barry Allen of the “Modern Age of Comics,” isn’t he? And to think he’s been around that long, I have to say, is pretty comforting. That something or someone who used to be so revolutionary is now seen a bit as commonplace, part of the “same ol, same ol” shows how far we’ve come with the industry, how much things have changed for the better despite what a lot of the cynics say. Maybe the path to progress in comics has taken longer than it could, but there are definitely some things to be proud of.

Jake, I totally agree with your second paragraph, but your analogies in the first paragraph don’t hold up. “Beautiful” and “attractive” are synonyms, as are “taste good” and “delicious.” “Vital” and “I like that” aren’t. I wrote “vital” because I was thinking of a particular kind of “good,” not just anything that strikes my fancy.

His analogy was fine as it’s just letting you know that whether or not something is vital is just as much a matter of opinion as how much you like something.

Actually Jake, I agree with you. It IS like saying “that woman isn’t beautiful just because YOU find her attractive.” Obviously with emphasis on WE.

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