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The Comics Alternative

The Comics Alternative is weekly podcast focusing on the world of alternative, independent, and primarily non-superhero comics. (There's nothing wrong with superhero comics. We just want to do something different.) New podcast episodes become available every Wednesday and include reviews of graphic novels and current ongoing series, discussions of upcoming comics, examinations of collected editions, in-depth analyses of a variety of comics texts, and spotlights on various creators and publishers. The Comics Alternative also produces "special feature" programs, such as shows specifically dedicated to creator interviews, webcomics, on-location events, and special non-weekly themes and topics.


Jun 12, 2013

This week on The Comics Alternative Andy and Derek present another roundtable discussion, this one devoted to the mainstream and indie comics divide. They are joined by fellow podcasters John Mayo, from the Comic Book Page podcast, and Chris Marshall, from Collected Comics Library. On this roundtable, the four guys begin by defining their terms and asking some basic questions — such as What are mainstream comics?, What defines an alternative or indie title?, How does one inform the other?, and What are the differences between the readerships of these different kinds of comics? — and from there the discussion goes off into different trajectories, all filled with nuanced responses and unexpected twists. Chris, John, Andy, and Derek cover genre definitions, the expectations underlying mainstream titles, the difficulty pinpointing indie content, the influences of fandom, divergences of readership, title availability, the “literariness” of certain comics, and, of course, the historical inheritance of comics as a disposable medium of “kids stuff.” They cover a lot of ground, and with intelligent, substantive conversation. What’s more, everyone had such a good time that the four guys have decided to do another roundtable discussion in the near future.