What’s Wrong With Reading Comic Books?

Justice League 52 Volume 1 Review
Why Read Comics?

I’ve been reading comic-books for years and is a passion that few people understand.

When I was younger I loved comic books, but like most teens I stopped reading them at the risk of being different. There is an association that comic-books have basic storylines, crude art and are targeted towards children. After I had left school, I realised that it is far more important to do things that you want to do as your life will be far more fulfilling.

Anyone who takes this approach to life is often faced with ridicule and sniggering,  In my case, supposed friends and family take enormous delight in highlighting how different I am, yet they fail to realise how boring they can sometimes be.

I find it impossible to relate to people who have no interests other than drinking and watching reality television. While their livers rot and their brains shrivel from mass-produced television, they take great enjoyment in being critical of me smoking, reading comic-books, painting miniatures and driving classic cars.

In my experience, people who are classed as outsiders or not the ‘norm’, are far more interesting than those who don’t. They tend to find themselves in unusual scenarios, meet intriguing people and have a passion and knowledge unrivaled by any ‘normal’ person.

Getting back to comics, I find it fascinating and aggravating that the stereotype of comic-book readers still exists when media as a whole is consumed by anything comic-book related.

Over recent years, the vast majority of blockbuster films and major television series have been either influenced or based upon comic-book properties.  While some viewers may not realise that this is the case, (Arrow being a recent example) most of the content is quite open about its roots.

Last year, The Avengers grossed in excess of $1.33 billion at the box-office and sits proudly in third position as the highest grossing film of all time. When you take into consideration the top ten grossing films of all time, this mentality towards comic-book is completely absurd:

1 Avatar $2,782,275,172 2009
2 Titanic $2,185,372,302 1997
3 The Avengers $1,511,757,910 2012
4 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 $1,328,111,219 2011
5 Transformers: Dark of the Moon $1,123,746,996 2011
6 The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King $1,119,929,521 2003
7 Skyfall $1,108,561,013 2012
8 The Dark Knight Rises $1,081,041,287 2012
9 Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest $1,066,179,725 2006
10 Toy Story 3 $1,063,171,911 2010
  • Avatar is inspired by Japanese Manga,
  • Harry Potter is classed as a children’s novel,
  • Transformers is based upon a children’s cartoon by Hasbro,
  • The Lord of the Rings has been classed as childish (including one of my English teachers at school),
  • The Dark Knight Rises is a comic-book property,
  • Pirates of the Caribbean is based upon a children’s attraction at Disney World,
  • Toy Story 3 is a children’s film based on talking toys.

It can be argued that inflation opposed to number of tickets sold has had an influence on the above list, however the only logical conclusion is that Western culture is in love with all things geeky.

This begs the question…

What’s wrong with reading comic books?

I would love to hear your thoughts on the subject below:

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Chris McCarron

I'm an angry Scotsman, fanatical about Doctor Who with a savage hunger for comic-books and an unrivalled passion for video games. Owner of GoGoChimp