I’ve been reading comics for almost as long as I’ve been alive - literally, some of my very first memories are buying Batman comics on family car trips and staring at them in my car seat. I study, write about, and teach literature for a living. If I don’t have at least some ability to judge the aesthetic merits of a comic book after all this time, then I honestly don’t know who does: there’s my sense of entitlement for you. I write a comic book blog with a 9 1/2 year paper trail - you can look back through the archives and find every stupid thing I ever wrote, every creator I ever needlessly antagonized, every sweeping generalization I popped off and then painfully retracted. I know a few things about how comic books work. And I know that when a creator says something like “I don’t know if there is a value system to how much time it takes to read something versus how well it is written or how true the writing is,” there is something very profoundly missing in terms of a reciprocal, cordial, sympathetic dialogue between a creator and fan.
The “value system” is simple: if a comic is entertaining, it is doing its job and the reader is left with few if any complaints. If the comic is unentertaining, for whatever reason, than the creator has failed at his or her job. People don’t poke holes in a comic they enjoyed. Pointing out that a Bendis comic is decompressed and doesn’t provide enough story for the reader to feel as if he’s gotten his or her money’s worth should really not be a point of controversy in the year 2013. If a reader tells you they’re not getting their money’s worth from your book, you damn well better apologize. You don’t have to swear to change everything overnight - if you’ve got a style that still succeeds in getting customers in the door, there are obviously sufficient people around who do appreciate what you’re doing. But don’t tell your fans they don’t know how to read. Say you’re sorry and move on.” —