It’s pretty safe to say in the world of comic book publishing the superhero genre is pretty much on top. Of course their are tonnes of tried and tested genres; Horror (Creepy), Science Fiction (Transformers) and War (G.I Joe).
One genre got me thinking about why maybe these genres aren’t celebrating the almost blanket success of the superhero genre.
Recently I picked up a new British made comic, Strip. A comic which is about everything British about comics. It incorporates all kinds of genres like science fiction, fantasy, spying, superheroes and steam punk and though the stories are short stories with a continuing storyline I did quite enjoy reading it, they’re fresh and compelling.
Now to back to what I thought. The reason most genres in the comics industry are in shoved to the back of the queue probably has something to do with technology.
Looking at a classic British example, Commando. A series of pulp stories about soldiers. I’d say for a casual reader they can be quite hard to find (outside of WH Smiths). This kind of story format has been rolled out in cinema and TV so much it could be argued that this is the reason Stallone and co. aren’t bringing that much into the box office any more. It’s just the fact stories like this have just done to death in different more accessible media formats.
I don’t think this entirely fair, but it’s hard to judge because simply outside of the US and in the UK, comics in general can be hard to come by. It could be just summed up that if I had access to it, I’d probably buy it.
Another noticeable trend I’ve seen is that popular genre products tend to be reformatted from another media form. Fine examples include Sonic the Hedgehog, G.I Joe and Transformers. Just a couple of examples of enduring franchises.
I think the tide is turning with the trend however. Thanks to shows like The Walking Dead and it’s comic counterparts showing there is an audience maybe comic publishers will become a get braver and get the widespread recognition they deserve.