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Question of the Day | Mythology vs. Narrative

Chris Wisnia's Monstrosis is big on mythology

In a recent interview, filmmaker Rian Johnson was asked about the potential for a sequel to Looper. He said he was grateful that people thought the world could sustain more exploration, but ultimately it’s not something he’s interested in. Among other reasons, he’d rather let the unseen parts of the movie remain unseen. “Even if you do feel like you want to see more of it,” he said, “do you really want to see more of it?” He continues, “I think there’s something powerful about it being mythology as opposed to it actually being narrative.”

We seem to have an innate desire to want The Whole Story. We want to see the Clone Wars. We want to know about the giant pilot from Alien. We want the history of the Bourne project. And all this got me thinking about comics as well as movies. When I was a kid, we didn’t have comics stores. I got my comics at the local drug store or supermarket, and my choices were limited to whatever what was on the spinner rack. There were no back-issue bins or eBay, so if I missed an issue – and I always missed issues – I was hosed. Every issue of Batman seemed to be continuing some story I didn’t have the beginning of. Every issue of Spider-Man ended on a cliffhanger that I’d never see resolved.

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Comics A.M. | Kodansha’s Attack on Titan tops 9 million in Japan

Attack on Titan, Vol. 1

Publishing | Kodansha’s Attack on Titan, the action-fantasy manga by Hajime Isayama, has sold more than 9 million copies in Japan, according to the Sports Nippon newspaper. The eighth volume was released last week in Japan; Kodansha USA will publish the second volume next month in North America. [Anime News Network]

Publishing | Alex Zalben pays a visit to the Valiant offices and talks shop with editor Warren Simons: “Asking whether the idea was to set these up so that you can go right to TV, video games, or other properties, Simons strongly denies that was behind the relaunch. ‘I think you have guys who really love comic books,’ said Simons. ‘I’m just interested in publishing comic books. Obviously in this space, in this day and age you want to pay attention to everything – just like everyone does. But I think it all derives from publishing … [The publishers] just wanted to read comics about the characters that they loved growing up!'” [MTV Geek]

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Comics A.M. | Putting ‘Panel Parity’ into practice; JManga goes global

X-Club #3

Creators | Novelist and X-Club writer Simon Spurrier recounts how he gave up his seat on a panel at last weekend’s London Super ComicCon to creator Tammy Taylor, in the spirit of “Panel Parity”: “Paul’s idea is that you can’t expect true gender parity in comics unless you create the conditions to facilitate it. Even if one has to dabble in positive discrimination, even if one must expect outraged cries of ‘tokenism!,’ ‘political correctness gone mad!,’ ‘patronising cockcentric condescension!,’ it’s worth it. So Paul created a movement he called ‘Panel Parity’ in which he planned to exercise the only real power he has – like any of us in the weird world of industry conventions – to make a difference. Paul pledged that whenever he’s invited onto a panel which doesn’t feature at least 50% women, he’ll surrender his own seat to a female speaker. Even if that means tracking down someone less ‘well-suited’ to discussing the topic at hand than himself. Even if it means disappointing people in the crowd who travelled to the show specifically to see him talk. As long as Said SheGuest is able to contribute in some way to the conversation, Paul feels her presence on stage is more valuable than his own. Which is a brave and important and splendid thing to say.” [Simon Spurrier]

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