COMIC BOOKS A unique genre that can be used for many purposes. By E. Burke WHAT ARE THEY? A comic book, comicbook, or comic is a publication that is made up of panels that represent different sequential scenes. These panels usually contain brief captions and/or word balloons to let you know what the character is saying. The first comic book made an appearance in the United States in 1933 and followed the pattern of comic strips in newspapers.
The term comic book came about because the first comics embodied humor. IN THE BEGINNING The thematic elements of the genre can arguably be traced back to the ancient Greek gods and heroes. Modern comic book heroes use special attributes such as flight powers or those of strength. The concept of Samsons weakness in the Old Testament because of a haircut is similar to the weaknesses of
Superman and kryptonite. THEN Since the comic book format in 1933 ,the United States has produced the most titles,. British comics and Japanese Manga also produce many comics. Comics as a print form have existed in America since The Adventures of Obadiah Buckwheat in 1842 in hardcover. The first known American prototype comic book was Jerry Siegel's and Joe Shusters Superman in 1938. This was the start of the Golden Age of comics.
THE BEGINNINGS OF A GENRE Comic books blossomed into a distinct entertainment industry after 1938 to 1950 when the superhero genre would be the building block of the industry. The popularity of the superhero in the 1930s led to the creation of other characters such as Batman, Wonder Woman, Captain America, The Flash, and the Green Lantern. Eisner created storytelling effects using light, sound, and color based effects.
AND NOW In the 1980s, the comic book industry tried to reconstruct the Golden Age of comics by marketing collector comics and managed to have a significant audience. Marvel was the first comic book publisher to be listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1991 becoming a multimedia entertainment company earning multi millions at the box offices. Technology has made these characters look as fantastic as they are in the comic book. The comic book format is becoming a major force in corporate promotions of
superhero movies, clothing, souvenirs and the like. OTHER FORMS OF COMICS The first comic books in Japan appeared during the 18th century as woodblock-printed booklets with short stories in the form of folk tales and legends. They were written primarily for poor readers, but they became very sophisticated. Modern comic books in Japan are a mixture of Western styles and their early forms and are called manga, which means random
pictures. COMICS IN NEWSPAPERS Comics in newspapers are often in the Sunday edition. They are either single framed or four framed and can stand alone or be a serial. They usually include the same characters that are engaged in some event. The Yellow Kid is usually considered the first US newspaper comic strip.
COMIC BOOKS Comic books today cover a wide variety of subjects. There are horror, fantasy, scifi, crime, realistic etc. Free Comic Book Day is one single day - the first Saturday in May each year - when participating comic book stores give away comic books to whoever comes into their store.
COMIC CHARACTERS Besides superheroes, comic characters are often personalized animals, such as Mickey Mouse. Typical people, such as the teen-age Archie, or Dennis, representing the younger child.
Comics are also used to teach something , as Smokey, the Bear talks about forest fire prevention. ASSIGNMENTS Quiz.. 1. The Japanese comics are called --------------. 2. The most popular comics in the US are about ------------. 3. The way to show dialogue in a comic is to use ------------. 4. Comic book character traits go back as far as ---------------------. 5. The modern comic book format appeared in
the year ------------------. Answers are on the next slide. NOW Answers: 1. Manga 2. Superheroes 3. Bubbles 4. Ancient Greece 5. 1938. Make a collage of comic
book superheroes. Use at least 8 characters. Create your own four frame comic strip using known comic book characters. Draw your own original cartoon character in color. Write a short paragraph explaining who he is, what he does, and any special attributes he or she has.
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