Comic Books: How the Industry Works

By Örnebring, Henrik | Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly, Spring 2011 | Go to article overview

Comic Books: How the Industry Works


Örnebring, Henrik, Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly


Comic Books: How the Industry Works. Shirrel Rhoades. New York, NY: Peter Lang, 2008. 406 pp. $29.65 pbk.

After reading this book on the comic industry by veteran magazine and comics publishing executive Shirrel Rhoades, the main impression is confusion - who is this book intended for? Judging by the back cover blurb, it seems to be primarily aimed at people interested in breaking into the comic book industry, which is fine, of course, but a lot of the information provided in this book (e.g., comic industry basics in chapter 1, comic storytelling and the superhero genre in chapters 2 and 3) is so basic one would assume that someone interested in working in the industry would already know it. Furthermore, if this is indeed intended to be an industry guide-c«m-"breaking in"-book, then a lot of other information is simply irrelevant (e.g., the parts dealing with comic history, and the detailed discussions of particular comic book storylines).

This is clearly not an academic book, even though at times it appears or wants to appear to be. The book employs an academic reference system with endnotes, but virtually no references are to academic texts, and in some cases they provide only tenuous support for the author's argument. The text jumps from anecdote to anecdote, the writing frequently switches perspective mid-chapter, and it is often unclear exactly what point or argument the author is trying to make. For example, in chapter 4, "Archetypes." the author moves from Jungian theory to links between comics and folklore in what seems mostly as an attempt to justify the existence of superhero comics in the first place. The chapter is strangely disconnected from the rest of the book.

At other times Rhoades, a former newspaper journalist and then Marvel Comics executive, seems to want to write a textbook. All chapters are followed by a handful of "questions for further thought," and the author uses sidebars in comic book format (speech and thought bubbles) explaining key terms or just adding "fun facts" - these things indicate a textbook aim. However, the scattershot and anecdotal approach of the book will probably limit its usefulness to students. For example, chapter 10 ("Comics go to the movies - and turn on the TV") largely consists of unsystematic industry information and production anecdotes about the Hollywood superhero movies of the last decade (the Spider-man movies, the Fantastic Four movies, and so on) and will thus date very quickly. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Comic Books: How the Industry Works
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.