terry and the pirates
Editor’s Note: With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, we’ve declared this the week of Robot Love and resurrected I ♥ Comics. In one of our favorite features, various comics creators, bloggers, retailers and fans discuss the things they love about the medium.
Today we welcome our guest Jeff Parker, creator of The Interman, co-creator of Mysterius: The Unfathomable and writer of a lot of Marvel’s comics — Agents of Atlas, Age of the Sentry, X-Men First Class: Finals and Exiles.
by Jeff Parker
These comics we read can make us smart. Or at least, able to kill Seat 28D during the InFlight Trivia Challenge.
Comics have an inordinately facile ability to get information into the reader’s head. A few years ago I was in Washington, D.C. running around looking at monuments and the like, and I took the once-a-week tour of the Federal Reserve building. It’s surprisingly cool, do it when you’re there on a Thursday sometime. At the end of the tour they gave out a COMIC BOOK that attempted to explain how the Fed works. It was badly drawn, weakly colored, and yet- it actually got across to me some understanding of the mysterious process by which the Fed sets interest rates and influences economic growth or tries to thwart inflation. I was impressed that they took the steps to make a comics giveaway, and it made me happy to retrace the steps they must have gone through. As the guide of the day had explained, one of the big hurdles the people in the Federal Reserve have is trying to explain to the public how they do what they do. The job description requires some understanding of economic theory and process to even get to the nuts and bolts. They obviously spent a lot of time trying to figure out what delivery system could get the curious up to speed, and they arrived at a flimsy newsprint comic with no coated stock cover. And I still have it. They also showed a film about the Fed, but the comic still did a better job distilling the information.