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Comics 103

Comics 103

I’m not really a comic book guy. I’m a story guy with a strong Sci-Fi interest.

I didn’t follow comics as a kid, outside 200AD and Dredd. Instead I picked up a comic here and there, inbetween reading the collected Asimov stories, or Ursula K Le Guin and Philip K Dick in the school library. And a lot of Harlan Ellison for some reason. And more recently, Terry Pratchett’s Discworld.

Yet every where I look, when I find TV that looks interesting, a lot of it is comics. Or comics inspired. Daredevil. Powers. Bitten. Supergirl. Walking Dead. iZombie. Agents of SHIELD. Jessica Jones. Granted, some stories interesting than others.

Dredd. CC Image via Craig Duffy/Flickr

Some stories feel “comicky”, even if not comics-based. Heroes was deliberately built on comic book tropes. Heroes Reborn. Supernatural. Orphan Black. Z Nation. Bitten. Grimm.

Some stories are brilliantly executed. Z Nation manages to take the best of Asylum Films production values (fast, cheap, not taking itself too seriously), and use them to create a story that is the exact opposite of the Walking Dead, yet eminently watchable. Tatiana Maslany’s acting range – one actor playing several distinct characters, each realised as an individual – makes Orphan Black compelling every season.

Some stories decay quickly. Sleepy Hollow became formulaic very fast. The third season has a villain I don’t care about. Tom Mison intoning dramatically can only take you so far.

And some I missed, because there’s only so many hours to watch screens, I’m still playing catch-up with Arrow. I have yet to watch any of Gotham. But maybe that’s something in me. Origin stories are frequently the most boring part of a superhero’s story, and The Phantom Menace has made me very wary of all prequels.

Besides, let’s face it. The best Batman is Lego Batman. He captures the essence, “I’m dark, Or grey. Dark grey.”