The Geeks Have Inherited – Comics, Who Cares?

Over 2008 I wrote weekly for, during a very exciting time in the UK comix scene..


As the more astute of you will have realised I’ve been away entering a contest on web flexibility,which I won. Hence no Sheridan Cottage these last weeks. I’d like to thank all of you who checked by my blog. It all worked out for the best. I’d especially like to thank comics types Ben Oakes, John Robbins and Richard Barr and my dear friends outside of comics who made a decent attempt at helping me secure a win. And to Lee Kennedy and David Lloyd who made their presences felt.

This win is more rewarding than the exhaustion I’ve been feeling around the time of No Barcodes. By stating the following, I’m not stating anything obvious, surely?

Comics 2008: Across the breadth of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, cartoonists draw their comics, onto art paper, on the back of pages from the recycle bins, on the back of flyers and a few on fag packets. Emails, editing, assembly, photocopy, stapled and boxed, busses and trains to the comics festival where their fellow local cartoonists arrive. The co-ordinator is busy, but he’s glad to see them. Human traffic in doorless venue. I’d like to buy this for my gran. Oh wow, that’s what you’re working on ? Yes,  we’re here often. I think you’d really like this one. Days end, all cover table costs, some travel costs. Made a wage from making my own comics !!! Drinks ? People who don’t read comics are grown to create comics. It’s a Northern market stall town.

I’ve had a very interesting week. Productive. My work involved spending a day creating a business directory listing, and having felt (in some quarters erroneously) let down by the comics community. I took upon myself to come up with the much more worthwhile idea of recognising the potential of ethical normative institution. I’ll explain subtly what that means. One entry I loaded in the index is The Epoch Times, a newspaper aimed at the Chinese community outsideChina, where media is heavily censored. The Epoch Times content is generated by the production of a master copy on the web, from which local regions draw their content to give the paper a community feel. Distributed in 30 countries, 11 languages in print and 17 languages online. In August 2002, it was reported that 400,000 to 500,000 copies were available worldwide. Not at all like Jack Chick books then.

I also discovered BurmaNet News, another news-site created by sources outside a country of repressed media and more disgusting human rights violations.

What were even more worrying was that they had no entry on Wikipedia, either under ‘Burma’, ‘Burma Media’ or ‘BurmaNet News’. From the BurmaNet News Front Page,

“Ten thousand pregnant women among Burma’s estimated 2.4 million cyclone survivors are in urgent need of proper care, a UN official said Wednesday, as fresh questions were raised about the government’s willingness to accept foreign assistance.”

BurmaNet News has been up since 1994, yet did it show up anywhere on Wikipedia ? Not that I could see. Now this may be something to do with certain Burmese or other black ops figures and some vindictive censorship, which Wikipedia no doubt falls prey to. That would explain why certain other Burmese electronic news magazines such as Irrawaddy and Mizzima didn’t appear in any of those categories on Wikipedia either, only quoted in footnotes. Or it may have something to do with lazy-thinking spoiled nerds who have nothing better to do with their time…too orgasmed on writing up the latest episode of Heroes or Doctor Who, too obsessed with throwing a bit of voodoo the way of Warren Ellis or Dave Sim, or responding to some dumb fucking bile that offended someone on some comics forum ten years ago. And the reason that doesn’t change is that people don’t let people change. Some hang onto the tawdry trivial little verbal abuses as if it were Hitler Cheney Jong-il, by the skin of a rottweiller’s teeth. There, right there. Prioritise. I appreciate that every episode of Doctor Who is written up in twenty places on the web so I can take the slacker’s route round my degree, but that’s pretty much all it’s fucking good for 🙂

I’m sorry some of you had to read that. I will be sorry I have to read that. Maybe some sun-delirious or waterlimb deficiency painskin other-worlder will someday be sorry to read that. The world is in ruins and we had it coming.

The biggest problem with comics today is that comics invented and propagated the superhero. Too many folk involved in comics haven’t a snowball’s thought in fire of achieving something so simple in this super-powered age as some real concentrated meta-compassion for those who have not the meta.

Quote for the day from Grant Morrisson, “This shit, it’s fucking easy!”

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