Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Marvel Vs. Manga
[An observation]
Everyone at one point in their lives had become obssessed with comics. Particularly when one was young. Be it that sunday cartoon found at the back of the local paper, or in my case, comics churned out by that comic turned movie producer marvel.

I think I may have blogged about this before, but recently i have had the opportunity to read a few comics and I got reminded again why I dumped marvel and its ilk.

The reason: The "heroes" talk too much.

I don't know why the illustrator and the story-teller feel the need to cram every available space with dialog. Its as if, they are afraid of silence. This is particularly obvious during fight scenes. I mean, here are two guys allegedlly trying to kill each other, and yet every punch, every kick is accompanied by dialog. Almost as if the combatants are not satisfied with hurting each other, they have to discuss philosophy too.

By way of illustration, here is a scene taken from a fairly recent chapter of the "Incredible Hulk" (click too enlarge)

(Tony, Tony, Tony.. Didnt your mom tell you its impolite
to open your mouth when fighting Big, green, dumb things?)

For cryingoutloud. Did everybody took comedy lessons? Is being funny and/or being a great orator part of heroes101?

Look, I'm all for funny dialog and stuff, but if everyone tries to be funny all the time - what happens to the original personality man!? Good Gawsh!

[A study in contrast]
Contrast this with the way japanese comics, a.k.a. Manga is presented.

A common theme you will find here will be, before a battle the protagonists will meet. Maybe eat with each other and discuss things. If they were once friends perhaps a flashback scene of goodtimes. A few tender moments perhaps so the reader becomes horrified of the incoming fight. Or if they were bitter enemies from the very first, perhaps an explanation of the reasons why they hate each other.

But when fighting, there is no more space for talk. Sure sometimes some "thinking cloud" will be scattered here or there, but the characters will not explain anything anymore. There is no need. That's why they were fighting, all options for dialog has finished.

See this prototypical example (Kids, please dont click this)

(Dead men tell no tales)

Oh well, I dont think things will change anymore for marvel. They made millions doing such stuff. But sometimes, I almost wish they try to do something different. Take the aforementioned incredible hulk for example. It could be have been so much more.

So much more..

posted by Nezha at 7:04 AM | Permalink |


  • At 2:27 PM, Blogger Temposchlucker

    A friend of mine had a truckload of comic books. So when he moved to another home we helped him to fill the truck that he rented. But halfway the truck sunk thru the pavement till the axis:)

  • At 8:39 AM, Blogger Dwyane Corleone Fujiwara

    Wait wait wait!

    Not all Marvel comics are full of talk like that Incredible Hulk layout you got up there.

    Don't forget the Punisher's War Zone series and even the X-Men issues where Wolverine fought with Omega Red..

    Anyway remember, Marvel is big on character development or showing another side of heroes (albeit, a more vulnerable side) as opposed to Japanese manga characters who are, most often than not, one-sided.

  • At 11:47 AM, Blogger SamuraiPawn

    Maaan, you still got that crazy template!? ;)
    Good to see that the Demons of Chess still keep you awake at night.