So You Want to Read Comic Books: Video Games and The Fandom

Welcome back, fanboys and geek girls: this is the series where I instruct new readers on how to get into comic books. Hopefully, you have been reading my past couple of posts and are now diving into the world of comic books with gusto and hopefully a little more confidence than you had before.

Today we are going to talk about video games and the fandom as they relate to comic books.

The reason I paired these two together is that for me they are both sort of wild cards when understanding comics, especially for new comic book fans.

Some comic book video games rely on the fact that you are a comic book reader and already have knowledge of the characters and their relationships. Though, you may be able to infer a lot about the characters based on how they act in the video game. Plus, if you get interested, remember you can always look up the characters on Wikipedia to learn more. So this isn’t much of a problem. The only other troublesome thing about comic book video games is that some of them are not very good. Superman has had some notoriously bad video games and I would just like to warn new comic book readers about this. I don’t want anyone to be turned off by a character or a comic, because of a poor game.

The fandom is another monster entirely. Beware wandering into the fandom. It can spoil things for you—with spoilers. Or a fanon version of a character could make the canon comic book character completely unbearable to you. This isn’t always bad. Sometimes the fandom versions of characters have more depth than their comic book counterpart, but I don’t want any new fans to be disappointed by watching a fan video about a hilarious Green Goblin only to find that his comic book counterpart is not very funny at all. The fandom can also be very helpful, though, by scanning comic book pages for reader delight, providing helpful summaries of various character story arcs and plot lines, and of course awesome discussion about the comics themselves that could deepen your own knowledge and love for them.

There is also a dark side to fandom. Many female, gay, and minority comic books fans that discuss feminist, LGBTQ+, or race issues on forums can get harassed. Luckily, in my own experience I have seen less of this but I have heard of many others being harassed online or at conventions. Just try to remember that these people only represent a minority of the fans.

You also might want to check out some comic book blogs. That will give you insight into various issues, characters, authors, and artist that will help you explore the world of comics much more easily.

Now, sadly, our intro course is done.

But never fear. If you have made it this far you get to move on to Reading Comic Books 2.0, where all you have to do is check back here to check out comic book reviews, character studies, and discussions of authors and artists done by myself and MadameAce.

Until next time comic book fans! Excelsior!