A SHIFT IN PARADIGM: THE EVOLUTION OF AFRICAN COMICS.January 19, 2019
In recent years African creators world wide have been doing their very best pushing their creativity to the max. With so much talent been put to work it comes as no surprise that steady progress is been made. African comics are slowly gaining the attention they deserve and this has been the result of the hard work of so many creatives and enthusiasts from all over the planet.
That said, African comics have seen subtle changes over the past few years. Changes necessitated by the conditions, struggles and philosophies carried by the various creatives of the rising industry.
As time passes the quality of content continues to improve and the movement just keeps expanding. Fresh ideas pop up and innovation pushes creatives into new and uncharted reaches.
A lot of the early works of African creators were heavily influenced by the American industry. This influence was quite pronounced to say the least and in its extremity resulted in the work of many African creatives been mere duplications of already existing and more often than not popular titles.
This created a situation that was quite ironic to say the least. African creators in an attempt to export African stories and culture had in a sense undermined it, forcing their stories, art and content to kowtow to the dictates of another culture.
It also caused a stagnation of creativity as numerous African creators resulted to the practice of merely adapting the already existing stereotypical tropes of the established American industry in what they would have wanted to pass for African settings.
As time went on fans would become disillusioned with this , growing tired of been fed the same old predictable stories and essentially forcing creators to get more creative with their work. This would lead to an explosion of creativity in a sense that capes and tights would begin to fade into the back as more original African philosophies took center stage.
Stories would rely more heavily on African myth and lore and the aesthetics of characters would transform. The modern African would become more visible in the stories been produced essentially making characters more easy to relate to and giving them far more substance.
Though some African works still reek of foreign influence, the stories have taken a turn in a direction that visibly aims to put African culture at the forefront. Creatives also utilize their work in tackling challenges peculiar to the continent in an increasingly emboldened fashion.
In a sense these stories have evolved from cheap knockoffs of already established American titles into truly African stories and though African creatives still have a lot of work ahead of them they can breath a little easy, safe in the knowledge that they are on the right path and that their stories are truly wonderful and unique in their own right. They can sleep easy safe in the knowledge that the stories they are telling are truly African.