Motion Comics

September 5th, 2009 by | Tags: , ,

I’ve been looking at the various trailers for motion comics at amazon.com, trying to come up with a consistent opinion on them, and failing completely.

Some, like The Astonishing X-men, look just atrocious.  The figures move like bobble-heads, the zooming of the camera doesn’t let you appreciate the art and the voice acting is flat and unpleasant.

Others have better production values but seem misguided.  Batgirl: Year One, though a great story, doesn’t lend itself to motion comics.  The many flashbacks were difficult to assimilate in the book and just look confused when there’s visual differentiation between present and past, no time to linger, and the camera won’t stop moving.  Also, the voices are way off, with Babs sounding sixteen and James Gordon coming off as angry and repressive, instead of good-natured but over-protective.

Comics like Mad Love and Watchmen, no matter how well done, are just redundant.  Mad Love was already both an episode of the TV show and a comic.  Obviously it’s a popular story, but it’s a story that has been told frame-for-frame in two different kinds of media.  Motion comics split the difference without adding anything.  If you want to see the art, pick up the comic.  If you want to see the story, buy the actual episode of the show.  Same with Watchmen.  We have a movie and a comic.  A motion comic is overkill.

That being said?  I want those Batman: Black and Whiteepisodes.  I want them baaaaad.

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4 comments to “Motion Comics”

  1. The first Astro Boy anime was basically a motion comic and so was the first Hulk cartoon. A Watchmen motion comic isn’t overkill it’s lazy and cheap. It’s one thing to make them back in the 60s/70s it’s another to do it now.

  2. I thought that first episode of the Spider-Woman motion comic turned out well…between the Maleev art and the “motion” element, it ended up looking a lot like the cutscenes from the old Thief games. Not a bad thing at all.

    Still, it’s hard for me to see motion comics as anything other than a novelty; they’re interesting to watch, but I don’t see myself developing any real attachment to them or preferring them to comic books, fully-animated cartoons, or film adaptations. I think it’d take a lot of really impressive (and very reasonably priced) motion comics to win me over, and I don’t know if we’re likely to get that.

  3. The new Spider-Woman motion comic was alright with me solely because of Alex Maleev and Brian Bendis. I really don’t think another artist has a style that can be as readily or easily adapted into motion, and to team him with a writer notorious for covering entire pages in dialogue…well, it’s just a perfect storm for creating a watchable motion comic.

    Take away either of those two creators, and I just can’t see any motion comic working.

  4. And what about motion comics outside the superheroe universe?

    There’s this one called One Strange Way that adds interaction like the reader can click on background elements to watch side stories or clicks on a picture on the background and has to resolve a puzzle to see the picture.

    I have a motion comic done with 3D graphics. I have to recognize I went the motion comic way because it takes me a lot of time to make full animated stuff. It’s been three years since I started and I have only completed two episodes. It’s called “The Twisted Mind of Sofia” 3d animated motion comic.

    Hope you can watch it and let me know what you think about it, you can find it at http://www.TwistedSofia.com

    From the superheroe motion comics I’ve seen it bothers me to have text balloons and voice acting at the same time, I think it’s one or the other.