Scott McCloud Reflection and Thoughts on “Slow Comics”

This Reflection post is mainly going to be about my thoughts on Scott McCloud’s comparison of comics and graphic novels to film and movies. Let’s begin with the question: Are films just really slow comics?

Sure, you can say that films are just slow comics and you wouldn’t be wrong. Taking a look at the Akira novel and film, you can see that it only takes a few panels for the water tower to come crashing down while in the film it takes a few seconds, but in that time a multiple of 24 frames has passed. So, with film we see a scene happen in real time while in a comic the passage of time changes from panel to panel. This little detail of how time passes makes the two forms of media rather different.

Film is its very own form of media and shouldn’t really be called a slow comic, but I personally like to think of it like that when the source material is a graphic novel or just a novel in general. The majority of the time, film is used to adapt the source material and retell it in their own unique way. You can see this with, once again, the Akira novel and film. There is a large chunk of the novels left out of the film, but somehow they were still able to make it tell the same story in different way. The same comparison can be done for a number of other movies, but the series that comes to mind recently is the Kick-Ass comics and the two Kick-Ass movies. The scenes in the comics are vastly different from the ones in the movies another and even have different endings. A small example would be the main character getting a girlfriend in the movie while in the comics he isn’t able to hit it off with any girl.

I guess the point I’m trying make is that it doesn’t really matter if you consider films to be just really slow comics. They each do their job of telling  stories or retelling the same one in a different way.

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