Monday, October 15, 2012

Why I Love Romance Comics (and You Should Too)

Hey all! First off, I just want to give you all a big and sincere thank you for all the lovely comments and good thoughts sent to me during this super difficult time. Things will be hard for a while, I am sure of that. But, Sequential Crush has always been the space where I have shared my passion for romance comics and that won't change anytime soon!

Today, just for fun, I thought I would share a little bit with you just exactly why I am passionate about these little gems!

1.) The art Ok, this one is pretty much a no-brainer. Some of the art in romance comics is just soooooo good. It kind of makes me want to cry that they aren't published anymore! But, we just have to enjoy the issues that were published and savor the art of masters such as Alex Toth, Win Mortimer, José Luis García-López, along with so many others.

2.) Their usefulness as historical documents I have learned so much about 1960s and '70s history that I would not have learned otherwise because of the stories, advice columns, and advertising of the romance comics. My view on everything from mid-century dating etiquette to social mores of the time has changed and increased tenfold from reading romance comics!

3.) Not your everyday superhero comics The romance comics stand out from the rest of comic books in that they were specifically designed to be consumed by a rather young female audience and that makes them pretty special. I love superhero comics -- there is no doubt about that, but there is something reassuring about sequential universes that revolve around everyday, ordinary people and situations.

4.) The stories Sometimes the repetition of themes can get a little old, but at the same time it is comforting in a way to know that the romance comics followed a number of patterns. Running the gamut from serious to kooky, the stories acted as both inspiration and cautionary tales for young daters. They are all the more peculiar and fascinating to me in that the majority were crafted by men for a female audience. The social issue plot lines of the early 1970s are my favorite.

5.) The characters
The romance comics wouldn't have been what they were without an impressive set of stock characters and leading characters who just wouldn't give up on love. Many times insecure and flawed, these characters show us that relationships can be worth fighting for.

Well, there you have it! Just a few of the reasons why I am passionate about romance comics! What is it about them that keeps you coming back for more? And once again, thank you everyone for your kind words of support. You really are the best! I will be back soon with more stories, fashion, and all around romance comic book goodness.

12 comments:

  1. Wonderful piece, my friend. I owe you a couple scans and will send them as soon as the comics resurface in my big pile of things I have to do.

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  2. Question regarding point #2. You say that you have learned more about mid-century dating etiquette and social mores. How has this increased knowledge about said mores and etiquette effected you? Have your views on the modern world of romance and dating changed? What did they get wrong compared to us today? What do we today miss out on that we should relearn?

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    1. I don't know if any of the things I have learned concerning customs and etiquette of yore from the romance comics make me view the world of dating today any differently. Things were as they were then for various reasons (political, economic) and varying factors over the years have changed how people interact romantically in the present. Nothing necessarily better or worse, just different!

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  3. Yeah,but mostly number one for me.Especially when done by the man,the legend,the myth that is
    José Luis Garcia-López!
    (And also nr 3,4,5.)
    Cheers
    /A fellow human being
    p.s.I like it when you write about the fashion of yesterday.

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    1. Glad to hear you enjoy the fashion bits! I am never sure if people like those! I have some more good ones in store!

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  4. On your first point Matt Bakers work is probably what got me to buy my first romance comic but seeing Romita or Colan art on a DC romance comic or Lee Elias doing a Harvey romance cover has kept me grounded as a collector of the genre.

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    1. Some of those Lee Elias Harvey covers are really something!

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  5. just seeing the girls drawn by john buscema , john romita sr , and especially nick cardy! in all their groovy glory makes me proud to be a comic book fan! thanks for all you do jacque!

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    1. It certainly is my pleasure! Thank you for reading!!! :)

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  6. The stunning artwork is what gets me... the way they draw their hair! I wish my hair had antigravity to look like that!! :)
    Also, they are much more challenging to collect, and oh so satisfying when you finally find those elusive issues you're missing!

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    1. Yes! The challenge!!! So exhilarating!

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