Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Relevant to My Interests: Comic Book Reviews

So I looked into comic book reviews on the YouTubes because I might be making one in the near future.

Jesus Christ, they are terrible. Mr. Christ, if you're reading this right now, please don't read these things. I guess you're omniscient and everything and know everything there is to know about them, but there's a certain "ineffable quality" that is gained, and at a terrible price, if you watch these things yourself. Just don't.

I'd comment on the other videos, but they'd just be varying expressions of incredulity.

I only mentioned (and watched) this one because no matter how much polish and focus a review has (and this one has it), you will look like a fucking ass if you can't pronounce "cacophony," instead referencing poo and Family Guy.

This video is special because it's actually *ahem* professionally done. Despite the graphics and camera work, which are both great and better than anything I'll be able to put together, note that Blair Butler's style, which is supposed to be informal with honest enthusiasm, ends up seeming just as unscripted and random as any of the amateur reviews. There are times where it seems like she's trying to think of what she's saying next. She's a professional reporter working for TV news channel that does TV. It's either unbelievably incompetent, or a conscious stylistic choice that defies my understanding. The Jennifer Blood portion of the review is self-depreciating and self-aware, but not in any of the ways that could have worked for the review. And don't even get me started on a woman reviewing comics who has to comment on how unattractive a woman in a comic book is.

Note the difference. The quality. The fun. The humor. Does Yahtzee hesitate? Does Yahtzee wander? Does No. No. No. That's the sort of review I like reading. That's the sort of review I'd like to make.

It occurs to me that there are a few lessons I'd like to take away from these:
-This is not the 6, 4, or 11 o'clock news. You don't face the camera and talk about stuff. The news format is for professional news with a singular message. The screen is telling you things.
-Informal does not mean shit. Case in point: Star Trek. The opening scene is informal, but no one was compelled to insert stutters or time wasting verbal tics to make it seem that way. Write a script. Do a second take.

-Keep it fun. I know some people want an authoritative voice to tell them what to and what not to read, but I have a hard time believing that people want to know whether the new Iron Man is worth reading or not. Speaking on the merits/flaws of a comic (or even comics in general) seems like it would be a better use of time than simply saying whether or not Action Comics #896 was good, if The Authority was worth reading, or if what they did with Frank Castle in Punisher: Long, Cold Dark was a good treatment of the character. Those things are worth doing, but they're not necessarily fun.


This is a pretty good example. There are some flaws, but generally, it's a good format and it's well executed.

No comments: