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Showing posts from April, 2007

Finding a Tagline for Comics

Before walking home, I stopped by Cafe Breton at the Podium for a late dinner and a cup of coffee. It was after eating my serving of Chicken Run--chicken strips on toasted bread with asparagus spears-- that I found myself thinking about the answers the kind folks offered in response to my previous entry.

The consensus boiled down to the marriage--or synergy, as jac put it--between art and words which for many comics enthusiasts would be that defining benefit of comics, with art contributing significantly to the experience. It can be as simple as "kasi may drawing lalu na kapag maganda, nakakaakit" as how James described it, or as analytical as "I love the amount of control comics gives me as a reader...I can scan through a comic quickly to get a quick feel of a story, or I can spend minutes pondering a single panel" the way Jaime explained it.

Reno also suggested the ability of comics to "speak to the child in us, since that's how kids start to like reading…

Why comics?

If you read comic books on a regular or semi-regular basis, what is it about the medium that makes it special? Why do you find time and set aside money for it when there are a lot more cheaper forms of entertainment out there? What makes comics interesting to you, personally? What do comics give you that other forms of entertainment can't?

If we can get enough answers (maybe a hundred... har har!) , maybe we can come up with comics' USP, or unique selling proposition. It can be comics' "tagline," so to speak, a statement that can encapsulize the experience and/or benefit unique to the medium. (Let's not tackle genre, writing and artstyle for the meantime; let's focus on the medium per se.)

Anyone?

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I found myself drawn to comics primarily because of the art, and I got into reading the weekly komiks anthologies because there was hardly much to do in my day.

I'm not too patient when it comes to reading very long s…

Making Philippine Comics Interesting Again

How do we make Philippine comics interesting again? How do we make a has-been "hip" again?

When I was growing up, the newsstand komiks were being picked up by housewives and househelp, and this demographic constituted most of komiks' sales power. Do recall that, in those days, a lot (if not majority) of titles being sold were romance-related. Add to that the titles that bundled komiks with showbiz news. Even back then, publishers knew what would sell. They created stories that catered to that market, and they knew where the market goes to on a regular basis (sari-sari stores and wet markets.) It was a simple set-up--like I said, there weren't a lot of new distractions in those days.

But then, in the late-80s to early-90s, komiks lapsed into a coma. Atlas may have blamed Mt. Pinatubo and the Mindanao conflict for its decline, but it boils down to the company's inability to adapt to the changing times, develop safety nets in case of emergencies and, moreover, encoura…

Philippine Comics Revival: My View

Gerry Alanguilan (Wasted, Elmer, Humanis Rex) writes an intriguing series of commentary about the recent Komiks Congress held at the National Center for Culture and Arts. I wasn't able to attend the Congress, but Gerry's musings reminded me of what happened at a Philippine Animation forum held last year at De La Salle-Greenhills. While the authorities were sincerely gung-ho about the revival and progress of their respective industries, hardly anything was tackled about what revival and progress entailed.

The Philippine comics scene undoubtedly has a huge talent base. You'd see it every year in the comics conventions. Seeing the younger folk dole out pages and pages of comics always reminds me of those years when my batch (which included Arnold Arre, Marco Dimaano, etc.) was starting out, filled with enthusiasm and energy over whatever we could produce, and hoping that someone--anyone--would find it in their hearts to spend some cash on what we had to offer.

In recent years, …

Tagged: Movie Quotes (Aliwness!!)

We can't stop here. This is Carlo country.Which movie was this quote from?Get your own quotes:

They may take away our Carlo, but they'll never take our freedom!Which movie was this quote from?Get your own quotes:

With great power comes great Carlo.Which movie was this quote from?Get your own quotes:

Ay, napapatambling ako sa results. Parang... parang... mataray.

Learning Curves: Advice To Students

When I taught website design at DLSU in 1999, one of the last things I told my students before the end of the term had something to do about learning. During our entire life in school we're required to learn things we at first find irrelevant. (In my case, I didn't find much value in Quantitative Analysis or International Marketing, though I did academically well in both courses.) And, in many instances, we find ourselves laboring through the process of memorizing minute details of an obscure topic only to consciously ditch them once the term is over.

I encouraged my students to do their best in learning something from the seemingly irrelevant subjects their curriculum flowcharts mandated. I told them that they'll never know how their brains will connect all those details and help them in the real world.

Every course in a curriculum exists to challenge the mind in different ways, to be receptive to different kinds of information across different subjects. While we all don…

A Couple of Changes

When I'm alone on Friday nights after work, or Saturday nights after gym, I'd walk to The Strip in Megamall and settle comfortably at Bali Blends. I'd order the usual 16oz coffee or, if I'm hungry, the comforting chicken galangal soup and vegetarian omelet. And while I drink or dine, I'd do my writing while R&B crooner Emmanuel jammed with the audience.

Last Saturday was Bali Blends' last day at Megamall. The waiters told me that the mall's new renovation effort threatened to ruin the al fresco set-up, prompting the owners to close shop. I don't know if that was a solid enough reason but, whatever the case, my heart sank at the idea that my most recent haunt would be shipping out. They're relocating to Alabang, and the staff asked for my number so they could text an invite to the opening. (But Alabang's way too far...we'll see.)

I took the day off last Monday to attend to a couple of financial concerns and take things easy. Work last week …