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Kate Thompson
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You're generalizing an entire genre that is comparable to say that people don't like foreign films. Foreign films can all be broken down into regular genres, too, as graphic novels can be broken down just like other books. Let's compare Alan Moore's work to any of Nora Roberts' books. Where's the substance? Sure, some graphic novels are fluff, but so are many non-picture books. Three of the immediate examples I think of when trying to represent the legitimacy of graphic novels are mentioned by another commenter: Maus, The Sandman series and most anything by Alan Moore. Your experience sounds very limited. Even if you just take a look at Batman's different graphic novels... some are just fluff and some can be intense character-developing stories through internal conflict. Internal conflict relies on the written word and not pictures. A good graphic novel uses images to complement the words and not distract from them. Read V for Vendetta, Watchmen, Maus 1 & 2, the Sandman series, Batman's Knightfall series... or maybe read Moore's League of Extraordinary Men after reading some about some of the characters represented to let the kids compare representations of the characters. There are different levels of quality of storytelling in all books. I would suggest encouraging kids that are interested in "fluff" graphic novels to read the more advanced graphic novels instead of blowing off the whole medium.
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Aug 11, 2011