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Opinion - Page 3

Manga Is Still Hugely Popular, So Why Don’t We Talk About It More?


Despite its important market share, huge visibility and ever-rising, record-breaking sales numbers, manga is still largely ignored or scorned by the Western comics community — a term that here means retailers, readers, publishers and some creators — while the critical press and general public thinks of manga as something separate from comics. But why?

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Thumbnail: Pacing And Violence In ‘Stray Bullets’


As endemic as violence is to mainstream comics, it's rare when you see a representation of it that inspires an appropriate level of shock. That's to be expected in superhero comics, where the gap between art and reality is wider, but even in books that maintain a closer relationship with the truth there are only a few books that portray violence in an un-stylized, un-sensationalized manner that still conveys how jarring it really is.

There are some great examples, from Scalped to the work of Johnny Craig (still a little sensationalized, but he gets a pass) to almost everything Garth Ennis has ever written. Even among that company, what David Lapham does in Stray Bullets is unique.

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Filed Under: , Category: Opinion, Reviews, Thumbnail

Super: The Inhumans and the Sinister Gentrification of Otherness


The Inhumans used to be one of the more fascinating minor oddities of the Marvel Universe; ultimately only about as important as the Atlanteans or Monster Island, but just as pleasingly weird. With Medusa's magnificent hair, Gorgon's thunderhooves, and Black Bolt's mute power in a world of chatty heroes, they were deservedly called 'uncanny' back when the X-Men were still a preppy study group.

But the Inhumans have become the "fetch" of the Marvel Universe; the more Marvel tries to make them happen, the more certain it seems that they never will. What makes the Inhumans' rise especially hard to accept is that it seems directly tied to the fall of the mutants. Today's X-Men are comics' most significant icons of otherness, and treating them as interchangeable with another set of outsiders is dehumanizing on a whole new level.

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Filed Under: , , , Category: Culture, Marvel, Opinion

Ask Chris #258: Why ‘Superman: The Animated Series’ Is The Underappreciated Gem Of The DCAU

Background art from Superman: The Animated Series

Q: How do you feel about Superman: The Animated Series? A faithful adaptation that distills the Superman mythos the same way as Batman: TAS? -- @Trilby64

A: Superman: The Animated Series is great, which is one of the reasons that it's so weird that nobody ever really talks about how great it is. Even here at ComicsAlliance, when I was looking for things to dive into for an in-depth episode guide, it never even came up for consideration --- but to be honest, a lot of that was because there's not a whole lot to make fun of in that series. It synthesized one of the best versions of Superman ever brought to any medium, and it did it with an incredible style that was well done on pretty much every level.

There's just one big problem: It's not Batman.

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The Evolution of the World’s Finest: Best Superman/Batman Team-Ups by Decade


Many of comics’ most popular characters have been around for decades, and in the case of the big names from the publisher now known as DC Comics, some have been around for a sizable chunk of a century. As these characters passed through the different historical eras known in comics as the Golden Age (the late 1930s through the early 1950s), the Silver Age (the mid 1950s through the late 1960s), the Bronze Age (the early 1970s through the mid 1980s) and on into modern times, they have experienced considerable changes in tone and portrayal that reflect the zeitgeist of the time.

With this feature we’ll help you navigate the very best stories of DC Comics’ most significant characters decade by decade. This week, with the release of Zack Snyder's Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice just six months away, we’re taking a look at the best Superman/Batman team-up comics.

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Marvel Still Pissed at Fox, Now Using The Inhumans to Kill Off The X-Men


The Marvel Cinematic Universe was built out of spare parts. With heavy-hitters like Spider-Man and the X-Men owned by different studios, Marvel Studios bet big on less popular characters and emerged victorious. Suddenly, Iron Man and Captain America became a big deal for ordinary, non-nerd people. Marvel no longer needs their big guns to matter. And now, they’re showcasing their clout by ruthlessly removing the X-Men from the comic book landscape using the characters they intend to replace them with – the Inhumans.

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The Last Man On Earth: Should You Be Reading ‘The Autumnlands’?


Kurt Busiek and Benjamin Dewey's Autumnlands is set in a fantasy world that may or may not be the far-off future. Magic is dying, and the humanoid animal members of a highly hierarchical society devise a last-minute plan to bring the savior and progenitor of their world to their present day.

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Tony the Tiger? Why Is Mary Jane Joining the ‘Iron Man’ Cast?


Well, this is weird. Mary Jane Watson, model, nightclub owner, and ex-wife of Peter Parker (it's a fact, you gotta deal with it) is making a transfer to the Iron Man supporting cast in the fourth issue of Brian Michael Bendis and David Marquez's Invincible Iron Man this December. Marvel made the announcement on its website today, declaring that she will take on a new, "unexpected" role.

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Super: Where is the LGBTQ Ms. Marvel?


Superheroes meant a great deal to my sense of queer identity when I was growing up. The men were rarely drawn as sex symbols, but their athleticism and close male friendships were as close to homoeroticism as the culture allowed me. The presence of strange outsider heroes like Cloak and Dagger, the X-Men, and even DP7, combined with the fantasy of superhuman champions fighting on behalf of the weak and oppressed, made superheroes integral to my sense of self-worth when everything else conspired to tell me I was worthless.

With this new series of columns, 'Super', I'm going to look at some of the questions arising at the intersection of LGBTQ identity and superhero fiction, starting with a really vital one. Why isn't there a gay Ms Marvel?

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Hipster God & The Bad Teacher: Should You Be Reading ‘ReCollection’?


In ReCollection, by Ichigo Takano, a man with no positive attributes beyond the physical basics discovers that he’s an amnesiac high school teacher. He’s dating a student in his homeroom class. And he can see God.

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