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"I Sometimes Feel I'm The Only Person In The Company Who Doesn't Actually Watch It"

Manu: This week's? Yeah.

Bunting: There were a couple of lines last night that were like, "These feelings you have of being different, being a freak -- I have them too!" and it's funny how there's these, like, Venn diagrams of cliché in that show which are, like, comic-book clichés overlapping with Watchmen, overlapping with Dawson's Creek -- like, there are a bunch of archetypal clichés at once.

Nybakken: Yeah, they all go back to Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's X-Men, where they would shout these kinds of clichés in huge block letters, like, "NO, YOU AND I, WE'RE DIFFERENT, AND THEY HATE US!", you know, and in that context, it was a lot of fun, but that's been repeated and refined over the years, and someone like [Bryan] Singer manages to work them in a lot more subtly, in, say, the first two X-Men films, where he doesn't, like, bludgeon you over the head with that kind of stuff, to the extent that it's been happening on, like, the episode that you just described. And in other comics as well.

Manu: Well, I think there's clichés, and there's actual wholesale rip-offs of classic comic-book plots --

Nybakken: [laughs]

Manu: -- without really acknowledging them. I mean, Heroes ripped off "Days of Future Past" wholesale, and yet the creator of Heroes, Tim Kring, still talks about, "I'm not a geek, I don't read comics, this is all new to me," you know, and I feel that's a little disingenuous, really.

Bunting: That leads to another question I had about sticking to canon, in the cases where that's applicable. Because, you know, maybe he ripped it off and maybe he didn't, but there is a school of thought that's like, there's only seven stories --

Nybakken: "Days of Future Past," the original "Days of Future Past," I can't come up with a citation, but I wouldn't be at all surprised if that was just taken out of a pulp sci-fi story from the nineteen-fifties that someone else had read. Plots and stuff like this get recycled all the time; I mean, there are definitely cases where you can say, "This was taken from this," and other times where it's not quite as clear. Like, for instance, the movie Constantine -- almost all of Constantine was based on a very specific storyline written by Garth Ennis, collected in the trade paperback Dangerous Habits. That I don't think was actually acknowledged anywhere in the film, but anytime someone saw that and said, "Hey, I'd like to read that," we made sure we had a new edition of Dangerous Habits out there when the movie came out.

Bunting: But if I were gonna pitch a TV series based on a popular -- like, the Green Lantern. Whatever ended up happening with that?

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Mondo Extra
Ask A Comic-Book Editor

Episode Report Card
Grade It Now!
YOU GRADE IT
"I Sometimes Feel I'm The Only Person In The Company Who Doesn't Actually Watch It"

Manu: This week's? Yeah.

Bunting: There were a couple of lines last night that were like, "These feelings you have of being different, being a freak -- I have them too!" and it's funny how there's these, like, Venn diagrams of cliché in that show which are, like, comic-book clichés overlapping with Watchmen, overlapping with Dawson's Creek -- like, there are a bunch of archetypal clichés at once.

Nybakken: Yeah, they all go back to Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's X-Men, where they would shout these kinds of clichés in huge block letters, like, "NO, YOU AND I, WE'RE DIFFERENT, AND THEY HATE US!", you know, and in that context, it was a lot of fun, but that's been repeated and refined over the years, and someone like [Bryan] Singer manages to work them in a lot more subtly, in, say, the first two X-Men films, where he doesn't, like, bludgeon you over the head with that kind of stuff, to the extent that it's been happening on, like, the episode that you just described. And in other comics as well.

Manu: Well, I think there's clichés, and there's actual wholesale rip-offs of classic comic-book plots --

Nybakken: [laughs]

Manu: -- without really acknowledging them. I mean, Heroes ripped off "Days of Future Past" wholesale, and yet the creator of Heroes, Tim Kring, still talks about, "I'm not a geek, I don't read comics, this is all new to me," you know, and I feel that's a little disingenuous, really.

Bunting: That leads to another question I had about sticking to canon, in the cases where that's applicable. Because, you know, maybe he ripped it off and maybe he didn't, but there is a school of thought that's like, there's only seven stories --

Nybakken: "Days of Future Past," the original "Days of Future Past," I can't come up with a citation, but I wouldn't be at all surprised if that was just taken out of a pulp sci-fi story from the nineteen-fifties that someone else had read. Plots and stuff like this get recycled all the time; I mean, there are definitely cases where you can say, "This was taken from this," and other times where it's not quite as clear. Like, for instance, the movie Constantine -- almost all of Constantine was based on a very specific storyline written by Garth Ennis, collected in the trade paperback Dangerous Habits. That I don't think was actually acknowledged anywhere in the film, but anytime someone saw that and said, "Hey, I'd like to read that," we made sure we had a new edition of Dangerous Habits out there when the movie came out.

Bunting: But if I were gonna pitch a TV series based on a popular -- like, the Green Lantern. Whatever ended up happening with that?

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