Comic books on the web.
February 25, 2002 6:52 AM   Subscribe

Comic books on the web. So Crossgen comics is starting their fee-based webcomics initiative, and for the first few weeks, EVERY comic they've published is online for free. Does this turn those of you who couldn't care less about comics onto something? Would it get you into your local comic book store? Can these replace physical comic books? And is the interface better or worse than on Marvel's dotcomics?(Main link does not seem to support Mac.)
posted by matt8313 (10 comments total)
hmm, don't really care enough to click the link :)
posted by benh57 at 7:03 AM on February 25, 2002

The interface is annoying. Those zooming word balloons make me dizzy, and my cursor is always in the way.
posted by Outlawyr at 7:26 AM on February 25, 2002

I cared enough to click the link, and even made it as far as the Silver Bullet front page, but after that weird vague flash opening thingy with the lady's voiceover which had no apparent purpose other than to state the obvious, well I lost what little interest I had. I haven't collected comic books since around 1985. The only title since then that comes to mind which has really turned my head was Neil Gaiman's Sandman. After looking at their front page, I doubt their effort is going to remotely match it.

However, as online comics go, I highly recommend Argon Zark. It's been around for years and his updates are sporadic (his last one was back in October) but it's always funny eye candy. And I see no indication he's switching to a fee-based thing. Don't forget to fax your stinking utilities to the east coast.
posted by ZachsMind at 7:52 AM on February 25, 2002

benh57: Then don't comment in the thread.

matt8313: Very difficult to navigate. Which is funny, cause I used to think the Marvel Dotcomics was annoying to use. I do think this is a good idea, though. Nowadays, pretty much every comic story arc is collected in a trade paperback, so I have no idea who still buys single issues. This is a cool way to see if you like a series, before you spend the 15-20 bucks for the TPB.
posted by Doug at 8:03 AM on February 25, 2002

Single issues are still great, you get the excitement of a monthly issue and then have to wait, which I think is the way its supposed to be done. That's how they're written. Do you watch your tv series as they air or do you record em and watch em all at once?
Plus some of the best issues are stand alone (see tangled web-severance package last year).
But I digress... web comics seem okay, but I don't think they will catch any new fans out there, just the old guard that will say, huh, Daredevil has sound effects.
posted by dig_duggler at 8:13 AM on February 25, 2002

I do not think that comics on the Web will replace physical comics in the near future. It's odd to me to find myself saying that, because I normally find myself laughing at people who make similar assertions about other media.

There is a whole culture of comic collecting that revolves around the physical books, the physical comic art, and let's not forget that some people buy comics as an investment rather than to just enjoy them. I used to work at a comic shop in Albany, NY in the early nineties, and have a couple of boxes of my most prized books still in my house. I, however, haven't bought a book in five years, and don't really follow things the way I used to.

I doubt that this will draw new fans, same characters, same stories, same, albeit lower quality, art.

I think it's interesting that they are moving some books online, I was quite excited to discover that Marvel had some of their titles online, but to me, it's not the same thing, it's almost a completely different medium when you move things online. I like the quality of art in the printed books much better, of course. I think there are some interesting opportunities to take advantage of the differences between a paper book and the medium of the Web/Flash. Between the two, I think I like Marvel's implementation better than CrossGens.
posted by bump at 9:55 AM on February 25, 2002

For subscription online comics, I would look elsewhere.
posted by sean17 at 10:41 AM on February 25, 2002

Even moreso than books, I don't think digital comics will replace "real" ones. I think the guys at Modern Tales (which sean17 linked to) are much more likely to get my online subscription bucks. Never mind that Crossgen's stuff ain't that great. Now online access to Danger Girl...
posted by owillis at 10:52 AM on February 25, 2002

I liked it. I loved The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, and have been meaning to check out Crossgen's "Ruse" series, which is supposed to be along the same lines, but I have been too lazy to walk down to the store and buy them. I read the first issue online, and now I am excited enough about it to make the haj.

The interface isn't perfect.. obviously they would have been better as plain old PDF files, but the price was right.

And if you weren't interested enough to click the link, why post about it? Or am I missing the punchline again? :)
posted by Hildago at 1:18 PM on February 25, 2002

I think online comics might be instrumental in bringing in the occasional new reader, such as Hildago. However, I don't think it's a system you'll see die-hards use on a regular basis. As bump said there is a whole culture around the physical books. Part of the whole experience, for me, is pouring over the back issue boxes in my local store and conventions. Browsing titles via mouse click doesn't have the same feel.
posted by FunkyHelix at 3:26 PM on February 25, 2002

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