Controversies Simmer About History of Comics and Its Modern Nature
Two conversations spread across the Internet worth noting: Eddie Campbell on the graphic novel and how more sloppily conceived definitions fall short of the mark; the Metabunker fellas on Rodophe Topffer as the earliest cartoonist.
I find Topffer interesting in all the same ways as everyone else does, but did anyone worth considering ever really take the Yellow Kid seriously as an artistic starting point? I see that mentioned whenever someone brings up Topffer -- Gary Groth gets beaten with that argument construction in this movie trailer as if the other comics people caught him in a goof-up. I remember writing about 19th century German cartooning as comics when I was a graduate student in 1992, and I wasn't exactly rich in my comics knowledge. I always thought it was pretty clear that the Yellow Kid began comics the same way Christopher Columbus discovered America -- not in any literal sense, but in a sense where the economic and cultural forces were now combined behind it to lock into place a certain kind of future development for the industry. Did anyone after 1974 or so think otherwise?