A Mancster down South: Comics Unmasked at the British Library. (4 of 4)

Breakdowns: The Outer Limits of Comics.
This section focusses on something I’ve never really considered; the role of magic in British comics. With some of the biggest names in the industry being practising magicians it makes sense though. A lineage from opiate use in Victorian dream comics, to astral-horror writer Lovecraft to modern day comics writers like Alan Moore is presented, providing a timeline of altered states being studied in fiction. To finish off the exhibition, the future of comics and crossovers into other media are also looked at.

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A Mancster down South: Comics Unmasked at the British Library. (3 of 4)

Let’s Talk About Sex.
This section looks at how changing attitudes towards sexual imagery in Britain has affected comics. This is the only part of the exhibition which has been separated from the others, which says something about current attitudes in itself.

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A Mancster down South: Comics Unmasked at the British Library. (Part 1 of 4)

“Comics”, it’s an awkward word that means a lot of different things to a lot of different people. The British Library has taken the very open definition of “storytelling in sequential pictures” to show a wide variety of pieces dating back hundreds of years up to the present day, covering a huge number of subjects and media. It seems their aim is to show that the comics medium is open to any sort of storytelling for any audience, to challenge preconceptions of what a comic actually is and show that it’s an artform worth discussion. With everything from comical mischief to graphic violence, everything is on display in what is likely the largest and most in-depth exhibition of British comics ever. Continue reading