Words

Stories That Go Over Reader’s Heads

Written on Fri, Apr 1, 2011 by Kyle posted by kyle

I’m a big enough man to admit I’m not the smartest person around. Don’t get the wrong idea, I have my moments and I don’t fall behind in conversations or anything. So every now and again I come across a story that goes right over my head and I have to keep going back or get a lot of other perspective on what just happened.

A perfect example is Dr. Manhattan . I’ve read ‘Watchmen’ at least a half dozen times since first purchasing it and the character still fascinates me. The concept of living or even seeing all things at once is a hard concept to wrap my head around but the way it’s executed has never stopped impressing me when I read it on the page. I pick out some new subtleties every time I re-read that book.

A more interesting example of a writer who does that for me on a very erratic basis is Grant Morrison. This is a writer who has success from underrated books like ‘JLA One Million’ . That story hits me in particular because of how much it stands out from other regular futures we’ve seen like in the ‘Legion of Super Heroes’ or for ‘Booster Gold’. The future Morrison presents felt like one that truly was far and away and not just modern day with aliens, flying cars and different architecture.

Now where Morrison lost me (and others) was in part of Final ‘Crisis’. I wasn’t thrown by the events that took place there, I bought every tie in and sub plot issue and exacted the sequence of not just each issue but each scene and panel in all of those issues. A lot never gets explained (Such as the identities of others being held captive with the banished monitor), a lot of choices for when things are shown to us in the order the are defy explanation. There are good ideas and at the end of the day Im glad I have it, but I think Morrison over reached in this case.

It can be risky for comics to reach so far, especially in mainstream comics. Risky isn’t popular, but I love it when a writers challenge us readers. Pushing limits should be something more writers strive for when they can. Instead we often get stories that just try to shock us with something gross, or try to twist who the secret bad guy is 5 different ways. Worst of all you get books that reviewers call “Good for that it is”. I’m just a lowly Liberal Art’s graduate and if I thinks that’s too little to settle for, so should everyone else.

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