What makes a good Storyline?

For a while now, I've been buying trades or hardcovers of very popular stories, or storylines like: Death of Superman, Batman: Hush, Superman/Batman Public Enemies, Green Lantern Rebirth, Blackest Night, War of the Green Lanterns, Planet Hulk, World War Hulk, And Watchmen.

I read all of them, or the main event of the series like Blackest Night & WWH (World War Hulk), and after reading the story once, I find myself reading it over and over again. So it got me thinking, What makes a good storyline or story, or comic in general? What qualities does it take to make a story so good, that everyone , or most people, want to buy it & read it? Is it the death of a hero or villain, a war, a great battle, rivial characters killing each other, some original story that everyone can relate to or an origin story? It be good to know, for the future.

And if the storyline is good, should there be a another storyline similar to the original like the Hulks and their Planet Hulk (Red Hulk, Skarr, Planet Savage), World War Hulk(s), Clone Saga for Spider-Man, then having an Ultimate Version of it?

15 Comments
15 Comments
Posted by tron_bonne

Text text and more text.

The more to read the better detail oriented the story.

Posted by ReVamp

A Good Writer

Posted by Assman123

Have you guys ever thought of the idea of... instead of comic book characters being shown upon

what about the civilians who are getting between the crossfires. An anthology book or a lost tape kind-of story taking place in the Marvel Civil War kinda rings good in my mind

Posted by Mayo88m

Lots of separate elements coming together in just the right way are what makes a good story. There are staples to it, things that a story require, but getting it in the right mixture, putting in the right nuances, that's what makes them great.

Posted by InnerVenom123

@ReVamp said:

A Good Writer

Posted by InnerVenom123

@Assman123 said:

Have you guys ever thought of the idea of... instead of comic book characters being shown upon

what about the civilians who are getting between the crossfires. An anthology book or a lost tape kind-of story taking place in the Marvel Civil War kinda rings good in my mind

That's been done in several events now. It's usually called "FRONT LINE".

Posted by saoakden

@Assman123: I think they did that for World War Hulk and I kow they're doing it for Fear Itslef and the aftermath called Battle Scars I think. Not 100% sure.

Posted by karrob

@ReVamp said:

A Good Writer

Posted by Steps

Depends on what the writers are trying to convey. A Good Writer know when to give out as much detail and when to keep action and dialogue to a minimum without harming the story.

Edited by tron_bonne

Good writers: Stan Lee

Bad writers: Matt Fraction

It seems that Fraction uses illustrations to represent the plots of a story more than his empathy on dialogue. I don't think he can write a story personally. I think he gives ideas to the artist what he sees and then adds in little dialogue to support the illustration. For example he does this alot:

He walks.....
He sees.....
He blinks....
Bam!
Darkness......

Stan and more old school writers are more into very detail oriented dialogue from both perspective of narrative AND character rolls. He can for example write a well unique persona of characters such as Dr. Doom, Peter Parker, Magneto, Hulk, Dr. Strange, Thor and all his other characters. And then add a narration from 1st person perspective to 3rd perspective on the wild and still be very detailed and convincing. I guess, it's because before Stan wrote for comics, he read alot of books. Most of Fraction's character dialogue is mono-toned. All the characters talk the same. If he wanted to make a picture book, fine, just leave the text dialogue away from it, and leave that part to a writer who actually knows how to write.

Posted by Caligula

for me it's something that deviates from tradition. tradition is also known as "the Hero's Journey" it's ever present in many forms of media, and it goes something like this, it is set in a five act sequence.

Act 1: establish hero

Act 2: establish conflict

Act 3: hero rises to meet conflict, yet ultimately fails

Act 4: things get worse

Act 5: hero returns to meet new more grave conflict and overcomes the odds

I tend to like stories that break these rules. Whether that be following the villain instead of the hero, or in the fifth act having the hero lose. or in the third act having the hero triumph only to become the new villain and is the defeated in the fifth act by underdog new hero. there are many many ways to break "the hero's journey" and I tend to like them because the make the story far less predictable. I also like stories that start at the end and return to the beginning so you can see what led up to this point (like fight club), or stories that don't follow a set timeline (like pulp fiction). or stories that break the fourth wall.

Basically I think good stories are unpredictable and often rule breaking, these usually make the best stories because the leave an impression on you because you had a preset notion of how things should go and then it flips the rule book the bird.

Posted by tron_bonne

This:

vs

This

Posted by PikminMania

@tron_bonne: Sorry but in your first example of how a comic should go I think it would be extremely boring. Even Watchmen or V for Vendetta had more action than what that first example shows. I hate when superhero comic books don't have any action at all...

Posted by tron_bonne

@PikminMania said:

@tron_bonne: Sorry but in your first example of how a comic should go I think it would be extremely boring. Even Watchmen or V for Vendetta had more action than what that first example shows. I hate when superhero comic books don't have any action at all...

There is action....

or

vs

A comic only has about 14 pages give or take 2 pages being advertisements. The worth of a comic should be as long as you spend with it. Most of the comics now you can flip through 14 pages within 5 minutes.... Because that's all there is to read. Not unless you rather look at on page of art 5 minutes a page. The older comics like what Stan Lee wrote is about 14 pages too, but a person could spend about 20 minutes to half an hour reading these pages at character roll paces. This is with enjoying both aspects of dialogue and illustrations (showings or action)

Posted by Jnr6Lil

Any comic that entertains