Jeff Chatlos seeks an explanation for this phenomenon:
Finally, I can speak for myself. I love comics, and will try just about any comic someone recommends, but I won’t touch anything other than comics (and even those are few) with fairies or elves in them (okay, I did like LotR, but that’s an exception). To me, books, TV shows and movies with “fantasy” settings (and I use fantasy to encompass everything from Xena to Legend) are somehow “too geeky” even for me. The same goes for most syndicated or cable sci-fi shows, though I’m generally willing to give big screen sci-fi and non-Star Trek network sci-fi, like The X-Files, a chance. I can’t even say why I think these things are geekier than I’m willing to go, because 1) I don’t really care what people think of me, as long as they don’t think I’m mean and 2) I have enough geek-like hobbies and interests, what difference would a few more make? I think that many people think about comics, as an art form or medium, the same way that I think about elves, fairies and anime (another thing I won’t touch, despite enjoying some manga).
Earlier on, he wondered why it might be that his wife has more tolerance for superhero movies than the comics (and also why she likes Alex Ross).
Here’s what I think (it got too long for the comments thread):
Of course this is just my opinion–but you know I believe it!!–superhero comics are just too complex for most people (and I don’t mean that as in “most people aren’t intelligent enough to understand them”, I mean: “most people don’t want to invest the kind of time into them that you must in order to derive the full benefit from them”–and who can blame them, really?)
Whenever I see a superhero movie, I’m always disappointed! Why? Because they didn’t “stick to continuity”? No way! You know I don’t care about that stuff! The problem with the movies is that they’re invariably simplified into action movies–and I pretty much hate action movies… I don’t appreciate novels, films, or anything else that deals with “larger than life heroes”, and part of my ongoing point is that I don’t think superhero comics have anything in common with Die Hard…
The play of the words against the pictures–and of the present issue against its predecessors–neutralizes awe and chastens every display of power. These aren’t paeans to the will, they’re about clinging for dear life to the merry-go-round of the “eternal recurrence”–once you’ve read enough superhero comics, you know that none of the “victories” are “for keeps” and that there aren’t any real “triumphs” in a cyclical world. (except in an Alex Ross comic–which is like an action movie…those chins crush every hint of complexity that gets in their path!) There’s so much narrative wonderment going on in long-running serial comics that just does not translate into any other medium… That’s the glory of the form, and probably its death-knell too–because who has the time to get up to speed with Marvel and DC history, other than a kid? And the kids are otherwise engaged at present. Oh well–so be it!
Good Day Friends!