This past week, a good deal of hype and a fair amount of pants shitting surrounded the launch of Avengers vs. X-men (and NOT another prelude). I reviewed the comic and I gave it high marks and not because I was high myself. It was a genuinely quality comic that began what promises to be another major comic book blockbuster event. But we've had those events before. They've come, gone, trilled, and disappointed fans for decades. But Avengers vs. X-men brought something new to the table, something I didn't mention in my review because I wasn't drunk enough to include it. That, and I wanted to give it its own post so we can fully appreciate what it entails. It's called Infinite Comics and despite a name that would make most anal-retentive physicists cringe (think Sheldon Cooper of the Big Bang Theory), it is a new format for comics that has the potential to be infinitely awesome.
It came in conjunction with Avengers vs. X-men. Marvel has been building this up as sort of a new way of presenting comics, like the DVD extras for a movie but with less snooty producers pretending as though explosions are some sort of artistic vision and more actual story that ties into the main plot. I admit I didn't know what the hell these things would entail when I heard about it. I kept thinking, "Infinite comics? What the fuck is that and who the fuck drank the last bottle of vodka?!" Marvel was somewhat vague on the details, but once I bought it through Comixology the full awesome of Infinite Comics hit me like a shot of peyote. Only instead of seeing talking cats and dancing bears, I saw the next level of comic book awesome.
|The Phoenix. Destroying the print industry and giving rise to digital awesome. Epic win!|
Infinite Comics, in its simplest form, is a comic made specifically for the digital format and not the printed page. That may not sound like much, but considering how the very nature of comic books haven't changed since the fucking Great Depression it's an overhaul that's more overdue Wesley Snipe's back taxes. Printing comics on pages is charming and simple, but let's face in the internet age where people want to carry all that content in their pockets with their iphones and condoms that's just not as appealing anymore. Infinite comics uses a richer kind of artwork that doesn't involve just scanning shit like anyone with a decent scanner and citizenship of a country with shitty copyright laws can do. It makes for smoother transitions, animation-like progression, and a unique sort of flow for the story that you just can't put on a page. I really can't describe it without a few hits of LSD, but it's something that's new and has the potential to be exceedingly awesome.
The first Infinite Comics was fairly short, but it did tell an important part of the Avengers vs. X-men story. In the first issue, Nova came crashing to Earth to warn the Avengers that the Phoenix was coming like Peter North in a three-way. The Infinite Comics story added more depth and detail to this journey. It showed him flying through space, racing towards the Earth with the Phoenix following close behind like a stalker ex-girlfriend armed with a video camera and crazy glue. It was a lot of inner monologue followed by incredible action that felt less like a comic and more like visions from another world unfolding in progressing panels. If there was any flaw in it, it was mostly that the story itself was too damn short. But it's the first of it's kind and it was awesome enough to give the readers so many reasons to hope and so many crazy shit to imagine.
Infinite Comics marks the potential beginning of a new world of comics. Even hardcore fans have to understand that print media is dying faster than the Zimbabwe economy. Even I find it difficult to keep boxes upon boxes of comics stacked in my closet. More often than not, it's just another hiding place for my weed. Almost all my new comics come in digitally. And just this past weekend, I bought myself an ipad. That's right! I'm now the proud owner of one of the best inventions for comics in history.
|Okay, third best.|
With my new ipad and the format offered by Infinite Comics, there are any number of ways Marvel can develop this platform. They could add sound effects. Imagine reading an Infinite Comic where when Wolverine is about to decapitate Sabretooth (again), you actually hear a 'snikt.' They could add graphics and motions as well without going through the trouble or cost of a motion comic. The first issue made the story feel like more animated. Just think of how much more awesome it could be if real animation could be incorporated.
|The possibilities...so awesome.|
It's an exciting time to be a comic book fan. Marvel has opened the door to a new method of conveying the awesome that comics can present. Just this past year, comics became day-and-date digital. Now something hew has entered the fray. What could it mean for the future? Well if a part-time stoner and drunk like me can imagine such wondrous possibilities, I'm sure the well-paid creative minds at Marvel can come up with something much better. The revolution has begun! I've seen the future and it is infinite. Thank you, Marvel. Now DC, time to get your act together and become the Android to Marvel's Apple! Nuff said.