Peppard, Anna F. "The power of the marvel(ous) image. Reading excess in the styles of Todd McFarlane, Jim Lee, and Rob Liefeld." In: Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics 10.3 (2019), S. 320–341.
Added by: joachim (7/28/18, 5:19 PM) Last edited by: joachim (5/29/20, 11:00 AM)
|Resource type: Journal Article
BibTeX citation key: Peppard2019
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Keywords: Body, Canada, Lee. Jim, Liefeld. Rob, Marvel, McFarlane. Todd, Style, Superhero, USA
Collection: Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics
During the 1990s, Todd McFarlane, Jim Lee, and Rob Liefeld generated record-breaking comic book sales and reshaped the entire North American comics industry by co-founding Image Comics. Despite this tremendous popularity and influence, the only scholarly writing on any of these creators is a chapter about Liefeld in Bart Beaty and Benjamin Woo’s The Greatest Comic Book of All Time, which partly focuses on this very neglect. It is understandable that a comics studies field still anxious to be taken seriously would reject the excessive and sometimes technically limited styles of these three creators. Yet excess is a meaningful mode of representation in its own right, worthy of serious investigation. Focusing on McFarlane, Lee, and Liefeld’s breakout work for Marvel and taking inspiration from both Beaty and Woo’s work as well as Scott Bukatman’s argument that superheroes represent ‘a corporeal, rather than a cognitive, mapping of the subject into a cultural system’ (2013, 49), this article will examine how these creators’ excessive superhero bodies reflect tensions underpinning the image-focused culture of the 1990s that was ultimately responsible for their fame and fortune, and with it, a major shift in the balance of power within the American comic book industry.
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