But Mile Morales captured that Spider-Man-ness — that feeling of being amazingly powerful yet constantly overwhelmed. And to make it even better, he was Black Hispanic, which meant that a whole bunch of readers now had their own Spider-Man. And because there wasn’t a Miles Morales movie with special effects that could outdo a comic artist’s drawings, I had to go to comics to get this particular kind of Spidey fix. I’m not saying that Marvel should make me GodKing of Business, but I can’t be alone in wishing that comics would give us stories that we can only find there, instead of stories that are just movie-lite.

1

Not Understanding The Proper Way To Take Chances

If in 2011 you had told me that the two movie series that people would be most hyped about in 2017 are Guardians Of The Galaxy and Deadpool, I would’ve told you “SHE SAID I WAS HER EVERYTHING!” because I was awful back then. But still, it’s not like those two franchises were huge names in the past or get mentioned whenever someone tries to document the rise of superhero culture, often in books with titles like Capes And Nixon: How Batman Fucked All Of Our Moms or Look! Up In The Sky! The Rise Of Superheroes In Vague Anythings.

But those are both movie series I’m talking about, and as I said, superhero movies ain’t doin’ so bad. So comics have to be a lot more careful with taking B-list characters and spinning them off into their own things. For example, take a look at how Darth Maul is doing on the charts:

Comichron

And how Venom is doing on the charts:

Comichron

They’re both badass characters, right? Then why is one hitting the top and the other languishing in a puddle of its own mediocrity? Well, one has general hype surrounding it, and the other doesn’t. Darth Maul showed up for five minutes in The Phantom Menace, kicked more ass than anyone else in the Star Wars series combined, and left. And even though we’ve seen him return in various comics and animated series, we’re still kind of mystified by him. We haven’t grown tired of him.

On the other hand, we grew so tired of Venom by 1991 that we literally had to create another Venom.

Marvel Comics
This new Venom’s name was Carnage. He was named that because “KILL EVERYTHING” was too subtle.

But taking a chance on giving a character their own solo series isn’t just something that you can do and then sit back and wait for the money enema. You have to promote the shit out of them, especially if they’re replacing characters who have been around for 60 years. If there’s a new Ms. Marvel (there is, and she’s great), you gotta let people know. I know that you’re Marvel, and that you’re the biggest comic company in the universe, but you’re not immune to a little thing called “People don’t know, and so they don’t care.”

If you introduce diverse characters and put them into spots that were previously held for decades by characters even non-comic-readers know about, you can’t just do the bare minimum amount of promotion, get two years in, and say “WELP, THAT DIDN’T PAN OUT. I GUESS PEOPLE JUST DON’T DIG DIVERSITY.” Spread the word, Marvel. You’re doing a good thing. Sometimes you do it very clumsily, but at least you’re making an effort to evolve past the days of five white guys and their eternal struggles against five other white guys (from space).

Marvel Comics
“Come on, guys! Let’s show Loki what the social norms of 1962 are all about!”

So when someone says that “diversity” is killing the comic industry, what they really mean is “Comics are dying, and we’re too lazy to do anything about it.”

Daniel has a blog.

For more check out 5 Shockingly Scenes in Famous Superhero Comics and 6 Hilariously Failed Attempts at Making Comics More Diverse.

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An interesting read via Cracked: All Posts

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