Monday, February 5, 2018

Karen Berger on the Birth of Vertigo Comics

This is a fascinating interview. Karen Berger discusses how her lack of interest in conventional superhero comics was actually a strength when it came to the creation of Vertigo--a venue for comics that appealed to people like me couldn't get into capes comics.

Also, does anyone else remember this Vertigo-centric DC Comics commercial from the 90s?

Say "Hi," Tina!

Aside from the huge nostalgia hit I get from watching that again, I realize that this commercial was actually effective at letting me know that comics might be worth my time in two ways: most obviously, it was saying that there are non-superhero comics out there that might appeal to me; secondarily, it showcased the graphic novel format. That second part was huge for me, even if I didn't recognize it at the time. 

As a teenager I didn't have a reliable way to make it to a comic shop every month to pick up the new issues as they arrived; reading them in a collected format was much easier. The graphic novel format also capitalized on a level of already existing comfort: it's easier to pick up graphic novels when you're used to reading regular novels than it is to pick up single issues when you've been reading novelistically for your entire literate life.