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Life, Law & Libros

Discussion: The Comic Niche

I love novels. I love films. I love storytelling in general, and comics are a storytelling medium. Granted, I've found I prefer most superhero stories in cartoon or movie form; but I still keep an eye out for stories that capture my interest, especially in comics with good writer/artist combinations.

Yesterday was Free Comic Book Day (FCBD) event, an annual event every first Saturday of May when lots of comic book companies provide free sample issues for comic stores to distribute. My local comic shop also accompanies this event with major sales throughout the store, like 40% off most stock, which makes it the one time of year I always buy comics for my little collection. ;) As I was waiting to enter the store, I started listening to those in line around me. Most seemed to be regular comics readers, enthusiasts even, but it got me wondering: were they also readers of novels?

Most readers I know seem to read either mainly novels or mainly comics. I don't know many who split their time evenly between the two, and I wonder why that is. Back in their heyday, everyone, kid to adult, read comics and regular books, too. Now, comics are more of a niche market with a stigma attached.

What do you think? Are you a comics reader? Are comics making the move back to mainstream, or is that just their film adaptations?


  1. I don't do comics, mostly because that style of storytelling isn't my thing. I like and appreciate the beauty of the written word a lot more than the more movie-like and picture-based rhythm of the graphic novel/comic book. I don't know about comics making the move back to mainstream. I think that thanks to a lot of the film adaptions, maybe there has been a bit of a renewed interest in the original comics - just like when a book is turned into a movie, there's a resurgence of interest in the novel that inspired it. You're right, though: people either seem to be mainly novel readers or comic readers; there's rarely an even divide between the two.

    1. I'm fairly picky about the comics I buy: they have to be in trade paperback form (no single issues each month), and the wrong art style can scare me away. But I am seeing more kids comic properties popping up, especially tie-ins to popular shows like My Little Pony and Transformers. Get 'em while they're young, right? :)

  2. I am so sad! I even remembered it was Free comic book day that morning and I even passed by the area one shop was in but it completely slipped my mind for the rest of the day. I fail.

    I think they are totally making a come back. I doubt they'll ever be as popular with today's youth as they were in say our parents day when they were kids but back then they didn't really have video games now did they.

    1. No worries! I think you can get most of the free comics on Comixology these days anyway. :) It's true: no video games, limited TV...comics looked pretty good back then. Now they're in the same boat with books competing for time against all these moving visuals and new technology. Definitely more contenders on the playing field.