Shawn’s FWIW: Do you want a Revolution?

Rokk and I don’t agree on a lot of things. You might say that I’m the loyal opposition. We aren’t diametrically opposed, but our tastes differ enough that even when we like the same material it is for different reasons. Sometimes Rokk gets a hold of a comic that I like and reviews it for months, giving it low scores and sharp critiques.

A number of folks took issue with a review of New Avengers #50 (a review, by the way, that I though was too kind to the material it was reviewing). Folks wanting to know why Rokk would continue to review a comic that repeatedly drew his ire. Some folks argued (and I paraphrase) that his time and Jim’s would be better served praising comics that he likes and spending less time “trashing” comics he doesn’t over multiple issues.

Rokk, in the comments, apologized (I’m putting words in his mouth too) and did the democratic thing and ran a poll on how to handle further reviews. He even put in place a set of rules, checks and balances to make sure his reviews don’t get lopsided again.

Now, is that any way to run a Revolution?

Rokk buys the comics he reads and reviews. If he is reviewing a comic, it is because he bought it, hoping that the previously poor issue is redeemed by the next one. Whether it is a love of characters, team, writer or company, or even popularity, he keeps hoping the next issue will be better. That alone earns him the right, in my opinion, to rant on if he chooses to do so. He paid for the admission.

How can we get change if we don’t fight against the current, against the hundreds of thousands of readers who buy a comic book just because it says “X-Men”, or “Wolverine” or “JLA” on it and just accept what they get.  Maybe, if these “poorly written but well selling titles” (courtesy of John Hend’s comment on the aforementioned review) had more attention put on them, instead of accepting their mediocrity, they would be better comics, and Rokk would not have to rant quite so much.

While we cannot review everything (I rarely review single issue at all in the interest of full disclosure) we will continue to promote the the comics we like (and we all like different comics). We are already searching out more diverse material outside of the world of DC and Marvel. But most of all, we are fighting the good fight, hoping that our words, and your comments will impact the writing of our comics for the better.

So the question is, do comic books need a Revolution?

5 thoughts on “Shawn’s FWIW: Do you want a Revolution?

  1. I don’t know why Rokk bothered to entertain a polling. I personally enjoy his reviews, both positive and negative. I would find myself avoiding this site if it just contained positive reviews of comics. Hell, I’d stick to Newsarama and swallow their drivel. This site is great cuz it gives me a synopsis of what’s in the latest comic.

    I wholeheartedly agree that the comic book industry leaders need a revolution. From what I see it seems that the shelves are filled more with corporate attempts at squeezing out every nickle and penny out of a franchise than there is an attempt at good story telling.

    Anywho, I hope that Rokk hasn’t taken the dissidents words that started this to heart. From what I last saw in the poll results, most were in favor of his continuing his work as is.


  2. No argument from me, that is solid logic if ever I heard it; write about what stirs up emotion in you. And if what gets you worked up is back to back to back to back bad writing, I for one want to hear your thoughts.

    Tonight’s Revolution will be broadcast in four color ink on newsprint.

  3. All I can do to answer “Do you want a Revolution?” is to quote Professor Scudworth from Clone High – “Did you see the pool? They flipped the bitch!”.

    Youtube for those unlucky enough to have never seen Clone High.

  4. I was very disappointed when Rokk seemed to give way to the “we only want nice stuff” critics.

    When a comic sucks, give it a bad review. I enjoy them and like to know what is going on even in bad comics, especially if they are part of a continuing major franchise.

    Reviews that are only nice puff pieces and plot summaries are boring and meaningless. They are like a teacher who only gives out perfect grades or never gives an F to avoid offending people’s feelings.

    Comics that have gone bad are the ones most in need of detailed critique.

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