Column by Steve Bennett
Posted by Steve Bennett on November 1, 2017 @ 6:00 pm CT
In case you missed it, last Tuesday, creator of The Walking Dead Robert Kirkman appeared on Late Night with Seth Meyers. That was not all that unusual; Meyers is an admitted comic book fan and has creators like Brian Michael Bendis and Sana Amanat on as guests. They talked about The Walking Dead, then promoted his next comic book series, Oblivion Song, which is coming out in 2018. But the interesting bit, for me anyway, was when apparently apropos of nothing Seth brought up Kirkman’s creation Super Dinosaur. Not only that, he also held up an actual image of the character. Which led to Kirkman to explain how the character was created for his son, who apparently liked it well enough, but then asked him, “Why can’t you write Spider-Man?” He said that exchange inspired him to make the character as big as Spider-Man and he “might have an announcement in a week or two.”
Now, I know it’s entirely possible Meyers brought up Super Dinosaur because he knew it would set up a hopefully amusing anecdote (or thought that a comic’s name might get a laugh out of the studio audience). But it's hard to imagine either wasting that much valuable television time unless it had some kind of purpose. So, (this is just idle speculation on my part), I wouldn't be a bit surprised if there is a Super Dinosaur-related announcement coming soon.
Why? Well, for starters the comic is about a kid whose best friend is a heavily armed talking dinosaur, so it’s a property which comes front-loaded with wish-fulfillment kid appeal. The comic by Kirkman and Jason Howard also reads like a really good action/adventure cartoon series, so I can't imagine turning it into one would be that difficult. Plus, it’s good to remember Robert Kirkman, comic book writer, is also Robert Kirkman, Chairman of Skybound, which along with being a comic book imprint, is a multiplatform entertainment company that has a two-year deal in place to create a TV series for Amazon. The success of The Walking Dead TV series has made Kirkman a name in the entertainment industry. He doesn’t promote himself the way some other creators I could name do, so you might be unaware he was designated a “creative mastermind” by The New York Times (“Robert Kirkman’s Next Adventure: Oblivion Song”).
Robert Kirkman's 'Invincible' Optioned by Universal”). But it’s mostly because if it’s a success, it’s that much more likely we’ll see an adaptation tied to one of the series’ side characters, Science Dog. Gosh, do I love Science Dog.
Back in 2013 (see “Confessions of a Comic Book Guy--Have You Seen This Comic?”), I wrote that the one good thing about the Christmas Season now officially starting in early November was that it could advance no further without rubbing up against Halloween. And the giant conglomerates behind that money making machine would never allow it to encroach upon their territory. Well, not surprisingly, it seems like I was living in a fool’s paradise. Because on Oct. 27th the Hallmark Movies & Mysteries channel (as well as the regular Hallmark Channel) switched to an all Christmas movie format.
I found out the hard way. After I finished watching an episode of Columbo, instead of turning the TV off, I put it on mute and went about my business concentrating on other screens. Then, out of the corner of my eye, I noticed they had started showing Christmas-themed episodes of Diagnosis Murder and Monk. Then I saw the countdown clock on the bottom of the screen to let folks at home know exactly when the channel would switch formats. Occasionally they would even run a screen crawl, the text patiently explaining to any possibly confused viewers their cozy murder shows would be back on come January.
I know none of this has anything to do with comic books, but I thought retailers should probably know when someone starts the Holiday Season before Halloween. Which, quite literally, begs the question, does anyone really want two solid months of Christmas movies? Given the tenor of the times I can certainly understand the urge to insert yourself into a cozy cocoon of feel-good comfort TV. I’ve been going through what friends have been starting to call a “rough patch” and I myself could use a little Christmas, right this very minute. But I’m going to have to go out on a limb and absolutely insist that too much is just too much, and this much concentrated Christmas can’t possibly be good for anyone.
The opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the writer, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the editorial staff of ICv2.com
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