Strip Talk #09: Let’s end the bashing of direct comic book films

Lyndsey Mosley, editor in chief

I don’t know where the inclination to bash a direct comic book movie has come from in recent years, but it honestly needs to stop.

I don’t know about the various movie critics out there, but I love a good comic book movie. And, if it just so happens that to achieve this rare feat someone must copy a comic panel by panel, then so be it.

That’s much more preferable than watching some mangled chop job by a director hack who doesn’t “get it.”

Take for instance “Sin City.” Every time I turned on the TV or read a review, someone was bashing the film because it was “too close to the comic.”

You’ve got to be kidding me. It was perfect. Everything that I knew about the comic actually came from the movie and inspired me to pick it up, not the other way around. So what if it was lifted nearly word for word? I’d rather have that than a butchered idea based on something that might resemble a video game movie (see: every Batman film after Returns and and Super Mario Bros.).

Another example? “Watchmen.” It, too, was criticized because of its close proximity to the comic book, and yet, what some critics didn’t realize was that the movie changed some key elements.

If they’d actually bothered to read the comic AND watch the movie, they would have known that. But somehow, it was too abstract and “comic-like” to do well. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. If it hadn’t been just like the comic, someone would have criticized the movie for straying too far from its roots. But because it was identical to the comic in nearly every respect, it was deemed too close to its source.

Really, movie critics, throw me a bone here.

As a comic book fan, I’m glad we’re moving past the point where movies based on properties are garbage adaptations that have nothing to do with the characters’ past or present activities and don’t make a drop of sense. If someone wants to give me exactly what I can pick up a book and read, more power to them. In an analogous school turn, I’d rather they study and do their homework than to not do the reading.

Lyndsey Mosley is editor in chief of Gaming Insurrection. She enjoys direct panel lifts at gicomics@gaminginsurrection.com

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