An Open Letter to Comic Fans

Posted on November 14, 2010

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Dear Fellow Comic Book Fans;

My name is Mychal Clements and I have been reading comics for a little over a year. When I first got into comics I was excited and bought a broad range of different titles and different artists.

I quickly learned that not everything on the shelves was good quality and quickly retreated into my shell and only bought the books that I knew were good. Or reviews told me were good.

However this summer there were many weeks when only one or two books that I was following came out at a time. Because I don’t carry cash on me,  I needed to by more books in order to meet the ten dollar requirement for a debit card transaction.

Because of this I began to try more books, on Wednesday’s I would walk around the table debating what looked good. I often times found that the covers of some books caught my eye and I went home with a few surprises. I began to branch out from my little DC world and taste some of what marvel was doing. I even went so far as too begin to collect some Image titles.

I am a college student and I have two professors that both read comics and are nerds like myself. I was excited when I learned this, and quickly grilled them on their knowledge and thoughts on some of my favorite characters.

I was happy that I had some older comic fans to converse with, however I learned a distressing truth. When I talked about DC or Marvel characters, they knew copious amounts of facts and history.  But when I mentioned the Image titles I had become excited about over the summer, they looked at me like I was crazy.

Based on conversations with fans like this and several other comic fans in stores I have discovered a dreadful truth. My fellow comic fans are a jade bunch, you have have been abused by some publishers and treated like you were children.

I sympathize with you, however I feel that you have made an error in your reaction. You have retreated into your shell and limited your comic intake to the few titles that you have been reading for years. And you are reading the same stories over and over again.

I beg you, please try new books. It is an obvious truth that the comic industry is struggling, and what it needs is for comic readers to try new books. You won’t know a book is bad unless you read it.

Give as many books as you can at least 1 issue. And if you didn’t like it write a letter to the publisher saying why you didn’t like it. Not a personal attack, but a critique. Write and say what you would like to see in the book. Phrases like “This book is garbage” is not what I’m talking about. And on the other side of that if you liked a book write the publisher or the creator and tell them what you liked about it. The comic industry needs more mature and thoughtful feedback on more of the content. And that can only happen if we as a community of consumers grow up and try new things, and talk about it like adults.

Thank you,

Myke Clements

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