Runaway Imagination on the Back of a Wild Mare / No Offence?


Okay, this week it’s The Killing Joke. Again. Next week I assume it’ll be Frank Cho.

So, I have a question. It isn’t meant to be sarcastic, I’m genuinely interested to know the answer to this, but bear with me first.

I don’t believe any work ‘is’ offensive anymore than I think any joke ‘is’ funny. There’s obviously a variable response dependent on the relationship between the material and the audience, and the word ‘is’ ought to be used something that is a definite and unarguable state.

I.E: The house IS on fire, the woman IS pregnant. There’s no amount of perception or analysis that can change those statements from being fact, while obviously, say, Frank Cho or Milo Manara aren’t offended by their own art when they post it online or submit it to editors for publication, so ‘offensive’ isn’t a definite state since it’s only offensive to some audiences.

So that’s where I stand on the nature of things being offensive. It’s an arguable notion that literally cannot to be said to representative of every one who could come into contact with it. With that in mind, I’d rather a portion of an audience didn’t presume to speak for everyone.

This is, to my mind, becoming an outdated view and while I have a lot of theories as to why that might be, here’s what my question is:

I have quite a few problems with the marketing and variant led nature of modern comics, not least of which is attempting to both explain and justify various crossovers, events,relaunches, double shipping and such to an increasingly aware audience who know, ultimately, that they’re being charged more to cover the loss incurred by customers who’ve seen the man behind the curtain and simply walked away

(And I hold my hands up as someone who’s been part of pointing out the manipulation by publishers of audiences. I never wanted to and still don’t want to sell snake oil, investments or events to the gullible. What I want to do is make people aware of things worth reading and make enough profit from that to carry on doing that.)

What I’m asking is, when these campaigns of ”I do not like this, and I feel DC or Marvel shouldn’t publish X, Y or Z.’ happen, could they be said to have any effect? Do any of you who’ve written things like this feel like they’ve been listened to? I ask because what I hope to do is help see in the end of investment and event comics and try to bring back the notion of a comic shop as a place to buy things to read, but in my perfect world, Hulk 181 would be the same price as Hulk 180 + 182: Cover price.

Thoughts welcomed. Please be civil.

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