In the beginning of the semester, I wrote a blog post about how Stephan Pastis, the creator of Pearls Before Swine, and how he is a modern cartoonist using old techniques to write is comics. The other day I was reading one of his Pearls Before Swine strips and was wondering “why isn’t he more famous?”
Then it actually hit me. Most of what I know about comics and graphic novels are old news in the sense, most of the stuff still being read was published before most of us were even born. Why is that though? Is it because of the audience? Is it because we don’t like change? Is it because we don’t know any better? There are many different theories out there that argue different perspectives of this. Including one that says it isn’t about old versus new comics, it’s about good versus bad comics.
Now, although I can see where people can argue the good versus bad, but I can also see why people argue the old versus new, especially now with comics being made into movies. Most movies and T.V. shows that have a comic base for the plot, are often comics that were made during the Golden Age of comics, you really don’t see a Christmas special for Pearls Before Swine, do you? No. So why is it that we seem to be stuck in the Golden Age?
To me, I think we, as a nation, need the Golden Age comics because they tend to be stories of heroes. Heroism is something that America was usually associated with, but as of late, it seems to be fading. America is being seen more as a country that can’t keep it’s nose out of other countries business. Watching the Red, White, and Blue fly across the movie screen, and on pages, gives Americans the hope that we are still the heroes, that America is always going to be needed.
Although I am still holding onto the idea that there might one day be a Pearls Before Swine Christmas special (look it would be funny), I still also hold onto the fact that America itself needs a hero. That hero might be old, but it is something to hold onto.