December 19, 2008

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NPR Creates: Best Stereotypical Major Media Trade Paperback List

Okay, so I love a lot of things about NPR. But certainly not their list of best superhero graphic novels for 2008. First off, that name--good God! Just call them Superhero Comics, okay? Don't worry, reading the word "comics" won't shave points off the IQs of the $6.00 coffee set as they read in Starbucks, honest.

Second of all, this list reads like an article titled, "Comics just aren't for kids anymore" with selections that are so hopelessly tied to mainsteam press preconceived notions about comics it's not even funny.

Let's see....Joker? A tie-in to The Dark Knight Defends Bush's Torture Policy. Death of Captain America? Probably read about it from the articles in the New York Times when the story first broke. Joss Wheadon? Seriously? Did the author of this piece even bother to go past the cover? Or read the Brian K. Vaughn version? Give onto me a break.

I'm not sure how Warren Ellis ended up on there, maybe an accidental Google search. And last but not least--some random Superman story that echoes 1970s comic books.

Please, NPR--if you're going to try this, do it right. Take more than five minutes cobbling the list together, and we'll all be happier.

Full disclosure--I've not read any of these titles. But from reading about them and knowing the authors involved, I can just about guarantee they would not get any person who doesn't normally read comics to start browsing the graphic novel section of Border's. So in addition to looking sloppy, I can't even see the use to NPR's yuppy set, either.

This is whyI don't really like "Best of..." lists. They don't really help, other than to make a publication look like they're "hip" and can rank things about which they'd probably be better off leaving alone.

On that note...next on Panel Patter: My list of the best 2008 Brain Surgeries!