Monday, October 25, 2010

Why The Komiks Advocate needed to be made

I found this blog post from Bandido Pilipino on Facebook Komiks ang naglalahong mundo, which itself was a reaction to this Agence France-Press article Once-great Philippine comic industry fights for survival. Both articles comment on the state of komiks today, often in regret or condemnation. It's also not uncommon to bandy around derogatory terms towards komiks, like 'baduy' (uncool) or 'laos na' (stale). Some komiks creators will come forward as apologetics and defend the craft they work in.

However, what I had noticed is that people had been posting their opinions about komiks. Whenever these blog posts and discussions come up online, these 2 points don't seem to be considered:

1. How great were komiks back then? Were writers and artists treated fairly by their employers? Were they always able to make good komiks stories? How financially viable was komiks, and for how long? Who were the last major komiks publishers, and why did they fail? Why did the komiks industry fade?

2. What is the actual state of komiks now? If there is no money in komiks, why are people still making them? Do komiks have to be mass produced to major markets to be considered successful? Should we dismiss the output from the current komiks community simply because it isn't mass market?

There is no common agreement to these questions. Most komiks fans of old are probably unaware that these questions remain unresolved and have taken them for granted. Among current and retired komiks makers, however, there is a wide range of perspectives and opinions. There is a need, not just to scan these opinions, but to have real discussion and debate.

I hope to make my blog a forum for this and other topics related to komiks. I think the komiks blogosphere hasn't really reached far enough in connecting the community together, although not for lack of trying. So this blog is one of many efforts to bridge that gap, to get old and new komiks makers talking, make new fans of the young kids obsessed with cosplay and video games, and make older fans rediscover their old passion.

As for my credentials, I really don't have any, aside from being a komiks fan. But, I have no affiliation with any prior or current komiks publishers, I'm not close to any komiks makers, and I don't write for any major old or new media companies either. In this sense, I'd like to think I can make this blog a fairly neutral arbiter of these discussions.

I may expand this to other things, when the opportunities arise - it may benefit the community if we make a dedicated wiki, or a public message board, for example. But for now, I'd like to see how far I can get with this blog.

If you'd like to share your opinions on the 'death of the komiks industry', please go ahead and comment.


  1. I think the industry just needs exposure to become more mainstream. Maybe a bit of promotion by Alodia perhaps? And then people will jump in the bandwagon of awesome. Just my thoughts.

  2. Thanks for your comment!

    Just to clear up misconceptions, there is no industry to speak of right now. There are publishing companies that have deals with creators to publish comics, but the komiks makers all produce their work independently. To be able to call this an industry, komiks making has to be profitable enough for publishing companies to hire these people to make komiks for them. This is also a good point of discussion, but that's for another time.