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Oh yeah, and while we’re on the subject of Mary Jane…



Here’s a little poll for ya:


Whose intelligence, in your opinion, was most insulted by this Ninth Art “preview” (4th Item) of the new Mary Jane series? Will the book be any good? Who knows? But here’s the real question–what would Alex de Campi rather see from Marvel? Other than a declaration of bankruptcy, I mean?

Good Afternoon Friends!
Dave

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25 comments

  1. Uhm… what, exactly, is the point of that preview? That Marvel sucks, that Mary Jane sucks, that Manga sucks or that comics suck? Just for clarity’s sake, I’d like to understand.

  2. i don’t think it’s as bad as all that…

    he’s just assuming that his reading audience already agrees with him (or can infer his position from the article sympathetically) about which methods marvel should use to bring in new readers. his tone is sarcastic of course and certainly the viewpoints presented are not supported in the body of the article but it’s just poorly executed and minimally thought out, not particularly offensive.

    –alex

  3. I thought it was funny, myself, but since I believe in ‘authors’ and other bourgeois concepts I guess that was a given.– rob

  4. Who doesn’t believe in ‘authors?’

    The best part of the preview is when Alex de Campi apparently doesn’t know Sean McKeever made a name for himself in comics by writing a high-school soap opera.

  5. The author of this blog himself professes to not believe in ‘authors.’ Make of that what you will.–rob

  6. Ah, so he did. Oh well, I don’t believe in them either. There are multiple ways of not believing in something, though, you know… There’s “I don’t believe in God” and then there’s “I don’t believe in Christianity.”

  7. This has been the second time de Campi has done fake dialogue making fun of something she hates about marvel on Ninth Art, and it still isn’t funny. A jealous failed author, attacking a personal grudge. Don’t see where claims about author ownership have come up. It’s an over-rated cause anyway.

    Isaac

  8. Question: if y’all hate Ninth Art so much, why are you spending so much time (a) reading it and (b) ripping it apart?– rob

  9. But what did you find funny Rob?

    the fact that Marvel has a board room?

    On “the death of the author”–I’m not saying that no one’s doing any typing (or thinking!)… All I’m saying is that, once the typing’s done, the author’s just a critic like the rest of us–a work is not a bridge between the public and the mind of a genius, it’s a trampoline of unstable meanings for all of us to enjoy!

    As for my involvement with Ninth Art–well, I’m still reading it every week…and most of what I find there doesn’t bother me at all… But when something does (usually the latest printout expelled by the De Campi Anti-Big Two/Mainstream/Dumb Americans Kvetchomatic Device), I mention it–since I’ve got this weblog. But I don’t think I’ve wasted all that much time confronting the publication in question (except for one memorable two-day final-paper fueled foray into the wilds of the Ninth Art forum!)

    Dave

  10. Ninth Art has a few very good writters, who provide insightful comentary I previously didn’t even consider-like the piece on terrorism in comics and Paul O’Brian in general.

    But then they have pretentious contributors who exist only to re-asert popular opinions or talk about themselves. They need to be taken down a peg.

    By the way, Marvel tried publishing manga sized b&w collections of stories. Last I checked, the industry wasn’t healed. Alex and all you economist-wannabes, do your research.

    Isaac.

  11. Agreed Isaac.

    I don’t have problem with Paul O’Brien–nor do I wish to paint any Ninth Arter as stupid… But enough already with the “Marvel is ruining comics because they’re not responsive to the market and damn you if you march zombielike to the industry’s funeral march” tone…

    I guess you could say I’m annoyed by writers who spend their time servicing the “servicing the trademarks” argument…

    Dave

  12. “On “the death of the author”–I’m not saying that no one’s doing any typing (or thinking!)… All I’m saying is that, once the typing’s done, the author’s just a critic like the rest of us–a work is not a bridge between the public and the mind of a genius, it’s a trampoline of unstable meanings for all of us to enjoy!”

    This is an interesting statement. It’s one I’ll have to think about, because viscerally I don’t agree with it… my book is my book to me. Not that you’re not welcome to read it (feel free! It’s for sale on Amazon!) but still, as much as any other reader can bring his or her own life experiences to it and interact with it, they’ll never have the experience of having been there when it happened, so to speak. But I am going to consider the point more and see if I come to agreement with it, because it does seem interesting to me.

  13. Matt wrote:

    “…as much as any other reader can bring his or her own life experiences to it and interact with it, they’ll never have the experience of having been there when it happened.”

    Hmm…I also wrote my novel to one very specific person–not, as it happens, myself (I’ve ranted about this before, in reference to Frank O’Hara’s mocktrine of “Personism”, which is very dear to me!), and this may account for some of the difference… every time I laid a word down on a page, I didn’t think of it as mine anymore, I thought of it as hers… But still, Matt, you’ll never have the experience of having been there at the moment of creation either! You aren’t the same person anymore. Heraclitus and all that rot about the river…it makes sense to me–when I flip through Darkling I Listen now, I know I’m no more of an authority on what it means than anyone else…of course, as a distant relative of the person that wrote the text, I’m cheering for the world to hop on, and I pray that they get a great bounce out of it, but they aren’t going to reach me through the book…

    Oh yeah–I’m intrigued by Things That Never Were and I think I can say with certainty that I will be checking it out sometime soon (once my finances are in order!)

    Dave

  14. Dave–

    Good lord, you haven’t bought Matt’s book yet? Crivens!

    Tell you what–e-mail me your snailmail address, and I’ll buy you a copy of Matt’s book. You’re in for a real treat.

    jess

  15. A’right, squire.

    I hear there’s a little bovver in this corner of the blogosphere, and I got sent around to sort out the misunderstanding by the geezer. You know – Ron, the Purple Monkey. Big fella, from Clapham.

    First things – you called Alex a Geezer. She’s no geezer. She’s a proper lady and all, and you don’t want to be confusing that. You’ll get into all sorts of trouble if you end up in my gaff and confuse a geezer for a bird, y’know.

    Secondly, since she’s a lady, we don’t appreciate that sort of po-mo talk around her. Filthy mouths can be shut, forever, you understand? Right? Right.

    No… drop that Derrida, right now, sonny. You’ll regret it.

    There you go. That’s better. Everyone stay nice and calm, and no-one needs to be hurt.

    The Ninth Art Enforcer

  16. No worries, mate. It was your crew I was addressing on that point. You were right proper.

    The Ninth Art Enforcer.

  17. Jesus, Jess is buying people copies of my book now? I know we’re on the same press and all, but damn… I’m not entirely sure how one repays that sort of thing.

    I’ll have to arrange an eventual trip to Texas, I guess. I actually have a friend living in Austin now, so I have a base for exploring the area.

    Anyway… to address the issue:

    “But still, Matt, you’ll never have the experience of having been there at the moment of creation either! You aren’t the same person anymore. Heraclitus and all that rot about the river.”

    Well, I’ll certainly never have it again. But I did have it once, and I do remember it, which I believe does give me a slight leg up on everyone else when it comes to understanding the text and knowing what I’d intended for it to do. Whether or not it does what I’d intended or indeed accomplishes some other task entirely, I’m no more qualified to address than anyone else, but what I or any other creator of art can give you that no one else can is the context of the genesis of the work… “this is what I was trying to do, my world at the time of creation, these are my influences, this is what I cut and this is what I added at the last minute”

    I think Derrida had some good points on the text as an artifact… that it’s a good idea as a critic to approach a work as itself all-sufficient to criticize it, that you don’t need to know anything about the writer to get into a discussion, that an evaluation of its merits and flaws should begin and probably end with the work itself. But I don’t think that translates to the author having no special perspective to bear on the work. It may not be a necessary perspective from the viewpoint of establishing a critical view of said work, but it can often be interesting and enlightening in its own right. One of my favorite books is Stephen King’s “Danse Macabre” (I like it better than most of his later fiction) which has his perspective on writing his book Salem’s Lot in it. Now, I didn’t need King to tell me that Salem’s Lot was very strongly derivative of Dracula… but having him tell me, and tell the story of removing a passage from the book which would have invoked the rats at Carfax Abbey did help illuminate why the scene in the book where the stairs are sawed away and knives left blade-up as a trap in the cellar felt so tacked-on and rushed: it wasn’t the scene as King had envisioned it, but was tacked on and rushed.

    “it makes sense to me–when I flip through Darkling I Listen now, I know I’m no more of an authority on what it means than anyone else…of course, as a distant relative of the person that wrote the text, I’m cheering for the world to hop on, and I pray that they get a great bounce out of it, but they aren’t going to reach me through the book…”

    Maybe not, but you could tell them about the guy who wrote it a hell of a lot better than I could, and that seems worthwhile to me somehow. It’s not everything, but it is something.

  18. Wait a minute – two comics commentators who are also novelists? Oh, and Hannibal Tabu. And Andrea Speed.

    They sell any of your stuff at Barnes and Nobles?

    And Dave-I’d like your take on Maus: something that’s so connected to personal experience. I know the discussion here is that a novel should stand on it’s own, but you seem to be running with the idea that fiction should exist in a world entirely of its own. Or maybe just safe area Gordaze, since that is more straight journalism.

    I know these are also non-fiction, but I would like to see where you place your sentiments.

    And to the Ninth Art Enforcer: physical threats don’t work over the web. And no one was attacking Alex, calling her a slut or whatnot, they were attacking a crappy…piece of writting. Don’t really know what it is. And use real name.

    Isaac.

  19. What are you, mate? Thick?

    Of course threats work over the web. I mean, once you start putting your money where you mouth is, you can’t do it, but… fuck… I mean, you can’t push someone’s teeth in with an iron bar over the blower, but it don’t mean you can’t call up some nonce and tell him what’s going to go down if he don’t stop messin’ with things he don’t want to mess with.

    Real name? Save that for the missus. When I’m working, I’m my job title. Death of the Author, y’know?

    Anyway – gotta go down the town to put five on the nose for the five-thrity. Keep it clean, sonny.

    The Ninth Art Enforcer

  20. Here’s how threats work.

    I’m an elite hacker. I’m gonna find your workplace from your ip, find your address from the registry, track you down, and rape you and the missus. I could be anybody; the new mailboy at work, a worker at a fast food, a taxi driver with the wife.

    Nah, I’m just playing.

    You little fucker coward can’t give his name as he works away in a dead end job, hardening his prick by defending middlebrow sites. Next time, bring a sock to work and get off the usual way.

    I gotta find a new site.

    I’s out.

  21. Out of character: I’m Kieron Gillen, occasional Ninth Art writer and since Jefty is in the thread where I was playfully asked to take on the role of the “The Ninth Art Enforcer”, I didn’t think it necessary to stress who I was.

    I also thought the fact that both of his posts were clearly tongue-in-cheek pisstakery (Step away from that Derrida, indeed), pretty much absent of anything contentious at all would make it obvious the whole thing was a mild joke. The entire idea of “The Ninth Art Enforcer” being a geezer who’ll sort you out if there’s any trouble, like, is inherently ludicrous.

    I probably should have realised that a post about people’s inability to get a gag may not be the best forum for attempts at comedy.

    I’m not very clever, me.

    KG

  22. If you’re still reading, that was immature. Sorry.

    Still, don’t threaten people online. Too many nut-jobs on the web for me to take it as a joke, especially since it was never really funny to begin with.

    I shouldn’t have put up the last two posts. I appologize to Dave for abusing his comments site and to the ninth art for threatening their contributor. I just don’t take well to threats myself, even those intended as a (poor) joke.

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