Monday, July 13, 2009

Could the WEDNESDAY COMICS model go forth and prosper?

Maybe the best thing about the release of WEDNESDAY COMICS #1 is the reopening of the debate about format in comic books.  Apart from the usual voices of reactionary conservatism, criticism seems limited to quibbles about the price-point and the paper-stock.  And I'm especially optimistic about the way it has people enthused about the possibilities of this particular format, even if they aren't completely struck by the specifics of the anthology's contents.  As such, it'd be great to see other publishers launching or experimenting with titles in this tabloid size.   And specifically, I'd love to see a UK publisher take the plunge, whether it was Rebellion or some free-thinking new boy.  A Dez Skinn for the 21st Century.  As the seeming natural home of anthology comics, and with it's abundance of great-but-famously-slow artists, the UK seems like the natural home of such a comic. Surely even Brian Bolland, Mick McMahon and Kev O'Neill could produce a one page strip for a weekly, fortnightly or monthly comic?  And when you think of this caliber of UK artists, other names just start flowing. The greatest hits of creators from 2000AD, WARRIOR and DEADLINE. Garry Leach, Colin Wilson (not technically from the UK, but he'll get my point), Shaky Kane, Brendan McCarthy, Bryan Talbot, Dave Gibbons, Glenn Fabry, Brett Ewins, Steve and Glynn Dillon, Phil Bond, Jamie Hewlett even. Steve Parkhouse, David Lloyd.  Barry Windsor Smith, if anyone can still reach him.  Simon Bisley.  I'm trying to go out of my way to name artists not currently getting exclusive contract work in the U.S., or I'd throw in names like Alan Davis and Liam Sharp in, too. I'm also trying deliberately to throw out names from the commercial golden eras of those big three anthologies, or I'd soon get around to guys like Hitch, Quitely, Trevor Hairsine, Jock, Frazer Irving.


Hell, Tharg - pick any 15/16 of those, splash the cash, and that's your greatest ever end of year special right there.

12 comments:

PJ Holden said...

Simon Bisley is working for your fellow countrymen, drawing The Dead for Bezerker comics... :)

-pj

Mark said...

Indeed he is, and it's even available in my local newsagent, and I've recommended it elsewhere before! More comics in mainstream distribution NOW!

Paul Rainey said...

Even if your hypothetical comic features post-2000 AD talent (see DFC, for example) it would be pretty damn good, I would say. In fact, let's have two comics; yours and mine. I'd buy them both.

Mark said...

I reckon that if THE DFC had mainstream distribution into newsagents/supermarkets/bookshops, it'd still be going, rather than the subscription-only model, that hampered them from the get-go.

Mark said...

Also, before someone goes ahead and accuses me of it, it's not like this blog hasn't supported and advocated new talent. All I'm doing here is suggesting a model for rehabilitating great artists who might struggle to produce even a few pages of comic art a month.

Declan Shalvey said...

Just wanted to say that though i sounded like a bit of a nay-sayer on Twitter, i *love* the idea and would be delighted if it happened.

David Wynne said...

If this happens, that's your claim for the hall of fame in comics history right there.

And, further to the DFC generation suggestion, you've even got me wondering about the idea of doing something similar with people from the small press / webcomic scene... Whether they'd be up for it is another matter, of course.

Mark said...

Offer to pay 'em, see if that helps.

David Wynne said...

Are you going to give me the money to do that, then? Wow, you really *are* a great guy...!

Mark said...

I *am* a committed patron of the arts.

Reds said...

A most excellent idea.

David Wynne said...

You *should* be commited, at any rate