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Author Topic: "Editorializing"  (Read 2468 times)
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TELLE
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« on: February 27, 2005, 12:58:11 PM »

In keeping with the original mandate, can I suggest 2 things?

1. Can we confine editorial comments and facts from "real-life" to some other forum like the "Talk" feature or comments?

and

2.Treatment of events
To quote TGSB, "In the writing of the encyclopedia ... Superman and all the other characters appearing in the chronicles were treated as though they were real people, and the adventures were treated as though they were actual historical events ..."  Etc. (TGSB ix).  I take this to mean no reference to authors, artists, or editors, or "real-life" or artistic  inspirations outside of picture credits.


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The goal here is to include all of The Great Superman Book (see the conversion guidelines), expand it, and update it to 1986, using the same pedantic, entertaining, and completist style.


Any thoughts?
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Klar Ken T5477
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« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2005, 01:09:24 PM »

You mean like "The Statue of Liberty" and the origin of Metropolis, Telle?
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dto
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« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2005, 06:00:57 PM »

First off, I confess I've never read "The Great Superman Book", but I understand the intent of creating a "serious" encyclopedia covering a "real" individual, without any references that would hint of a comics origin.  I think this is a perfectly acceptable means to view Superman, who is certainly more "real" in the minds of many people than other characters from folklore -- even those who ACTUALLY existed such as Johnny Appleseed and Mike Fink.

Yet, there are areas where we really NEED to provide the "behind the scenes" story that explains otherwise incomprehensible developments in Superman's long career.  Our recent discussion on "Imaginary Stories" is a perfect example.  However, this tends to breach "the fourth wall" and shatter a suspension of disbelief.

In viewing Supermanica entries, I personally wouldn't mind seeing a "From the Earth-1 Edition" definition at the top in large bold fonts, then further down the "Footnote from the Earth-Prime Edition" in appropriate small type.  Thus, it quickly becomes apparent to readers which is "The TRUTH" and what is "The REAL STORY behind the Truth" -- without taking anything away from the first entry!  

Adding such footnotes sparingly when deemed needed (and we could set standards clearly restricting their inclusion) might be a good compromise.  But we should keep the "Earth-Prime" notations brief (they shouldn't be longer than the original description!), and only mention established facts and verifiable quotes from DC insiders, not mere fannish speculation.  Including "Earth-Prime" information while keeping it from overrunning and spoiling the "Earth-1" fantasy is definitely a delicate balancing act for the Editor, but I think this can be integrated successfully and provide an even MORE complete overview of the Silver/Bronze Age Superman.
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Bill 9000
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« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2005, 06:55:54 PM »

I agree with Telle's suggestion. To see how I handled it, look up the entry on Captain Thunder at Supermanica. I took this idea from The Star Trek Encyclopedia.
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Klar Ken T5477
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« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2005, 08:09:16 PM »

Did something like that myself for Metropolis entry altho I gave it the Editorial "We" as opposed to "author" even tho I wrote the durn thing. :wink:

With my bad typing and typo fest, it take a lotta nerve to say "Editor". Perry'd smack me upside the head - I tell ya. Cheesy
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Bill 9000
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« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2005, 10:53:17 PM »

Quote from: "Klar Ken T5477"
Did something like that myself for Metropolis entry altho I gave it the Editorial "We" as opposed to "author" even tho I wrote the durn thing. :wink:

With my bad typing and typo fest, it take a lotta nerve to say "Editor". Perry'd smack me upside the head - I tell ya. Cheesy

Lucky for you he's not that Jameson guy at the Bugle. He'd probably have a fit! :wink:

All kidding aside for a moment, maybe such things should be labeled "Production Notes" so they're not "writer-specific" if you know what I mean.
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TELLE
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« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2005, 05:41:24 AM »

I don't want to fetishize Fleisher too much (but why stop now?), but I thought these further quotes are interesting:

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...the author and his assistant made use of no outside sources whatever.  Only the direct, firsthand evidence of the comic books themselves was used. --TGSBix


This is part of the fun --re-reading the comics.  There are many sites and fanzines that chronicle the behind the scenes aspect of the comics.  I am a fan of those as well and STTA is one of the best.

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this book contains no information concerning either the literary or artistic genesis of the character or of the literally dozens of writers and artists  who have since 1938 been creatively responsible for shaping SM's destiny --ibid


I guess the exception to this would be when Julie, Maggin, Swan or Bates appear in a story.

 
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Wherever strong support exists in the texts for opposing sets of facts, the evidence for both is examined in detail --TGSBx


This is part of the beauty of our project and of Fleisher's books.  Some of the greatest efforts in fandom, like the Omniverse, Roy Thomas's writings, or the work of Superman fans like those on these boards (many of whom are linked to elsewhere and in the internet info thread), have at their heart the desire to make sense of the sometimes jumbled continuity and variety of conflicting stories of comics.  Working to rectify continuity gaffs is harder than simply admitting that they are all imaginary stories and we should decided which one of these two tasks the Supermanica is for.  I would argue it can't be both.  An encyclopedia can have artistic integrity too.
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