Friday, May 30, 2003

respite and an aside

It was good to see friends last night at the delayed new comic book day at ComicQuest. It's been an odd, wet week.

The place was jam-packed with people wanting their latest fix (you can see how Ruey and I handled waiting - as captured by lensman Budj).

I picked up one of the Alan Moore celebratory thingies, which turned out to be 10% good, 90% drivel. Hopefully, the other collection will be better. This one lacked soul and a strong editorial presence.

I was hoping for some new TPBs, but apart from Bendis' Powers Vol.4, there was nothing of interest.

Marco, Ruey, Carl and I were disturbed by the manga styling of Xmen: Phoenix (Marco says that the artist began as an illustrator for a gaming mag). It was truly abominable, especially to my eyes.

An aside: It's interesting to note that while interest in manga (and manga-ish art) continues to grow in the US and other parts of the world, sales of manga in Japan continue to drop. Over the past 7 years, people have been buying much less - the market was around 6.5 million in terms of copies sold, now it's down to less than half. Think about it. Over the past 7 years, sales are consistently dropping. What does this mean?

I think a certain level of fatigue is to blame. Or perhaps all those big eyes are finally getting to them. Or the narrative has reached the sunset phase, becoming repetitive, self-reflexive and no longer capable of holding the target audience's interest. Or there are no good stories being told. Or maybe people are getting more sophisticated, younger people wanting something flashier, something that moves - anime, video games, films. It's just a shame that in all these media, reading suffers.


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