Kevin

Kevin

Kevin is a gamer, comic-lover, and book junkie. When he's not writing, he's probably drinking coffee and talking about Hellblazer or Silent Hill.

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Keeping Fear to a Minimum in an Age of Popularized Violence

There’s violence everywhere these days, but it seems most prevalent when it comes to real incidents that are later broadcasted or written about on loop. Anything from random muggings to mass shootings winds up disseminated on every major, and many minor, news sources, which not only makes viewers increasingly anxious, but may inspire copycat attacks by appearing to glorify them. However, few sources will avoid these stories because they’re popular and attract more viewers.

What can we do to mitigate this cycle without ignoring the news entirely? While we should know about such incidents, should we change the story, i.e. stop focusing on the criminal and focus more on the victims/aftermath? And, how do we explain violence in a way that doesn’t leave the more vulnerable of our population, like children, afraid that something will happen to them as well?

  • To mitigate fear, I think that it's necessary to emphasize hope. Without hope we cannot anticipate possibility for change, regardless of the situation.Under absolutely no circumstances should a story ever be changed just to make people feel better. Different versions of the same story leads to incorrect information being spread, which can be dangerous in forming people's opinions.Concerning explaining this type of news to our children, we have to emphasize hope here as well. Any child could be the right person that successfully ends some facet of the horrific society we live in today if they are given the right push. – sarahj31996 4 years ago
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Latest Comments

Kevin

I agree with other comments that the resurgence of comic popularity is more due to the economic crash in ’07 than 9/11. We’ve always known we have foreign enemies, and that was not the first time terrorists attacked those buildings, but that crash was yet another time American leaders failed to stabilize their own country. When an entire government lets people down, those people turn to individuals; there’s no face to associate with the disaster, no name, so they look for faces and names that can create equally significant, positive events, even if those are fictitious.

I also think the rise of anti-heroism in films is due to how many no longer see the world in black and white. Despite the Xavier v Magneto or Bat v Supes dichotomy, we see both sides performing actions that fall into gray areas, especially the latter. Batman refuses to kill even though he’s viewed as a criminal or vigilante by many, which arguably causes more harm than good, but is a distinctly moral decision, whereas Superman is so rigorous in upholding virtue that he’ll sometimes inconvenience or endanger other people in refusing to be immoral or unjust.

The important part is to look beyond the label or hero or anti. Their actions still have meaning, no matter what side of the morality fence they fall on, and that meaning, from Batman representing a 1% willing to give its life for the common folk, or The Joker destroying a system that many feel no longer serves its citizens, shows just what the audience wants, and in many ways, what it is capable of.

The Rise of Antiheroes in Modern Superhero Films
Kevin

I loved this show: Ritter was a perfect Jessica Jones; the character is dynamic, well-written, and feels real; and, above all, she’s a super hero living a regular life. This show is great for the same reason the original Hellblazer comics were better than the New 52 Constantine run. This is a person. Not a god, not an international agent, or bizarre villain, or synthetic extradimensional what-have-you, but someone you could imagine bumping into on the street.

This show did a lot right, from its set design to soundtrack to casting, but what it did best was premier right now, in our time. That was the smartest decision, to have Jones appear in a time where women are still not treated as equals, in real life or fictitiously, but enough people are stepping up to change that. Her story is one of hope, both personally, for one’s own life after trauma, and socially, for the future.

Though she, like most who go through such abuse, is often called damaged, Ritter’s portrayal, and the character overall, show that even though bad things happen to the best of us, we can be stronger than those who attacked us. People need a hero like her, now more than ever.

Jessica Jones Punches the way for Female Superheroes
Kevin

Having written a couple books–none published–I’m a bit surprised to hear that this is a trend. I knew a few people have done it, but had no idea how many. That being said, I have no problem with it.

While, yes, we can look at it as taking business away from people who genuinely want to be writers, these are generally different demographics. No horror writer is going to lose money to Tyler Oakley. And even then, there’s no stopping a customer from buying two memoirs about discovering one’s sexuality, and seeing life through the lens of someone who quite consciously lives in the public spotlight would likely be a nice contrast anyway.

Besides, I can’t begrudge anyone wanting to make money. Is it a bit exploitative? Yes. But the real culprit is the publishing industry, which uses both the YouTubers and audience. I don’t know how their contracts differ from the average writer’s, but this is a business many felt was dying out in the face of internet media.

And at the end of the day, I’d rather people read any book, even a sub-par one, than forsake reading altogether.

How Necessary is it for YouTubers to Write Books?