Comic Bloggers Poll Results Announced

I’ve just realized, I’ve neglected to congratulate Chris Tamarri on the successful conclusion of the Comic Bloggers’ Poll (no longer available). The results aren’t very surprising; the winners are current critical favorites that don’t stray too far from the mainstream superhero beat.

Like Heidi (link no longer available), I applaud the effort while being ashamed of my own non-participation. It’s just that I’m not the most timely reader — I sometimes don’t get around to checking out well-regarded works until months or years later — and so, when faced with the need to name the best, my mind goes blank and I bow out.

That’s why I’m not criticizing the poll for not including more female bloggers (they had the same invite everyone else did) or more female creators (because unless I’m willing to stand behind some specific work as better than the ones that won, it’s just quota-counting). Various bloggers’ analysis and reactions have made for some great reading:

Chris teamed up with Ed Cunard for a detailed back-and-forth response (link no longer available). They make the point that looking at the ballots as a whole shows a very diverse medium and some interesting mismatches between voters and votes and creators and created.

Dave at YACB analyzes the poll methodology. I’m impressed that his top choices matched the winners in 4 out of 6 categories …. does that make him the most typical comic blogger? He highlights the relative lack of manga; I was surprised to see that it was only eligible as a reprint, which while technically correct doesn’t match the experience of it most US readers have. Its diversity is also its weakness, with a “lack of any single title to rally around”, as Dave points out.

Mark Fossen compares his ballot to the winners as does Kurt at Return to Comics.

5 Responses to “Comic Bloggers Poll Results Announced”

  1. James Schee Says:

    I was one of those adult white male readers, whose favorite books (like Hot Gimmick) are ones that aren’t really targeted to how my demographic is thought of. (yet then I’m used to being different)

    The only categories I had top 10 finishes in were writer (Morrison and Moore), OGN (Top 10 book was only one I’ve read) and collection. (I got a kick out of the Showcase books, especially at $5 each through DCBS)

    My main problem is that I have a hard time of knowing when I read something. Reading the list I kept going “D’oh I forgot about that book!”

    Chris did a great job, and hopefully I’ll be asked to participate again next year. (if I can ever find time to write again)

  2. Derik Says:

    I briefly posted my opinion on the poll here:

    I had a hell of a time picking things in some of those categories as they didn’t fit the way I think of comics (I’m still not sure whether Rabbi’s Cat is limited series, continuing series, reprint, or original graphic novel.) The superhero prominence is disappointing but certainly not surprising.

  3. Lyle Says:

    My take on the poll results was that those who could appeal to multiple groups (specifically, the superhero fans, the Vertigo readers and the new mainstream crew) ended up on top, being able to get votes from more sources.

    Unfortunately that left few of my choices performing well, something I expected and almost didn’t vote because of it (but then I felt rebellious and voted for Electric Girl as best OGN — it was half new material — anyway.)

  4. Chris Tamarri Says:

    Although I was ultimately pleased with the Poll’s conclusion (just the fact that it was completed, I mean, without comment on the content of individual ballots), one of the things that surprised me was criticism that the Poll’s setup was inclined towards more mainstream comics. The reason I chose to make such broad categories was so that they could potentially encompass any comics work irrespective of format. Unfortunately, to a few that setup seemed to connote the opposite of what I intended.

    Another thing that surprised me was the number of people that declined to vote because they weren’t very well-read in a particular category (most notably with the original graphic novels). I never said this explicitly (in retrospect, I should’ve) but I was as interested in seeing what bloggers read, simply, as in what they liked, specifically. So if, for example, a potential voter read no OGN other than The 49ers, it’s therefore his favorite of the year. That sounds cheap, I know, but I think it says something if that’s the only OGN you went out of your way to purchase and read.

    Ultimately, I’ve been looking at this year as beta testing for next year. I knew that there would be problems (like, for example, where to acknowledge manga), but luckily they seemed to be few, and mostly they’re things that’re easily identifiable and, more importantly, fixable.

  5. Johanna Says:

    Chris, I suspect the rationale goes like this: broad categories -> fewer obvious choices for leaders -> more voting based on what people remember -> more mainstream winners.

    Great comments — and you’re right, awards are continually works in progress, where what you learn one year goes right back into next year’s planning. I’m glad to hear that you’re not giving up. :) And that’s a great rationale, too, for picking favorites. I think more information along those lines can only help encourage participation.




Most Recent Posts: