How many narratives can you fit into your skull, concurrently? How many narratives can you ingest whole hog, before the sheer volume of whole hog-narratives begin to compromise your enjoyment of each one of those narratives, individually? It’s something I struggle with, if no one else does, on a daily basis. The amount of comic books that drop on a given week worth reading, just the ones you know about, are aware of, is staggering. Then combine those titles with an entire month’s. Then combine those an entire year’s. Then combine those with all the movies you watch, games you play, television you ingest. Narratives upon characters upon tropes upon motifs upon subtexts, forever and ever, twisting and writhing in on themselves until they’re one anxiety-inducing pastiche of memorable immemorable moments. Granted, that’s if you, like me, place value on doing something other than simply ingesting. If you dare yourself to pause, if you dare yourself to find the time to pause, and reflect upon what you’re consuming. Slamming shut the consumer-gullet for but a moment and attempting to dig your fingernails into the meat of the mess.
What does this have to do with comics? Comic books present the clearest ideation of this problem for me. Week after week, what should be enjoyment, presents itself as an onslaught. Eat all these narratives, Ian. Mash them in mouth, swallow them whole, then try and find the will to remember the story lines and the energy to poke around at the edges of the comic books’ themes, ideas, et cetera.
What’s the alternative? Read less, more. I suppose. But even then, the gnawing sensation that I’m missing gets me. What’s the alternative to the alternative? Consume wildly, recklessly, not pausing to appreciate, but rather viewing the Stack as something to be conquered.
All of this is to say I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed with the Comic Book World, but hey. I’m here.
This is Buy These Flippin’ Comics!!!. The (theoretically) weekly column where I list what I intend to purchase on a New Comic Book Day. Provided my anxiety can be contained, that my medicated moat staves off the Enormity of It All. Per usual, hit up the comments section with your own purchases. My list is by no means all-encompassing, or reflective of a “Best Of TheWeek”, but rather the titles I’ve stumbled across. TL;DR if this list sucks, please help me by pointing out what I missed.
Don’t know what dropped this week? Here’s the list.