Saturday, October 24, 2009

Types of Comics Writers, Part #1: Bloody Writers

In my next few posts, I will be showcasing some of the types of comics writers.  Please note that these are archetypes.  Few writers will always fit within a given category, but many writers will fit within a particular category more often than not.  Also, these types are not exclusive.  A writer may fit within several types, and some of these categories will involve quite a bit of overlap.  The first type of comic book writer we'll be examining is: Bloody Writers.

[Some disturbing (written) imagery to follow.]

If your reading a comic book that involves characters having their arm ripped off and eaten by an enemy or a demonic dog eating a comic relief character, you've stumbled onto the work of a Bloody Writer.

The work of Bloody Writers is characterized by extreme violence, blood and gore.  They show the disturbing tendency to put gore and death above good storytelling.  Expect lots of deaths, gore, and anti-"heroes" who engage in graphically brutal fights and interrogations that would make terrorists who hack off limbs look tame.

Death is only one of the weapons within the Bloody Writers arsenal. Character torture is a device often employed by these writers, and this extends far beyond physical torture. Emotional and psychological torture is often intermingled with the physical torture.

These writers seem to follow the philosophy "more gore = better story," forgetting that if you submerge the audience in seven feet of blood and entrails, they are unlikely to even notice two or three more drops of blood added to the mess.  Bloody Writers must periodically "take things up a notch" because their audience inevitably will become bored after the seventh or eighth decapitation.  More blood and gore will be added.  More realistic wounds.  More disembowelment and dismemberment.  Sadism.  Murder.  Cannibalism.  Rape.

Fun and light-hearted characters are among Bloody Writers most consistent victims, as Bloody Writers tend to exhibit the attitude that any hero who is not currently suffering must suffering horribly in order to achieve character "growth" . . . which tends to be a euphemism for "a willingness to torture, maim and kill enemies."

"Heroes" will almost universally be anti-heroes (with the "hero" part being extremely dubious), and frequently all that separates the heroes from their enemies is that their enemies are willing to take things one step beyond what the "heroes" are.  Humor will almost universally be dark.

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