I snicker at the first for its insecure pretension—the literary equivalent of calling a a 'sanitation engineer'—and second because a 'graphic novel' is in fact the very thing it is ashamed to admit: a comic book, rather than a comic pamphlet or comic magazine.
Happy birthday to comic book legend Jack Kirby. We have the artist to thank for our modern imagining of superheroes, many which Kirby co-created with editor Stan Lee and imbued with human characteristics (the Hulk, for starters). The New York City-born Kirby’s surroundings influenced his vision of comic book rooftop battles, which were inspired by the real-life thuggish neighborhood characters he grew up around that would chase each other on the rooftops of his apartment building and fight. For more New York City-inspired stories, here are several other graphic novels that take the setting and vibe of the Big Apple into consideration.
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It's a marketing term... that I never had any sympathy with. The term 'comic' does just as well for me... The problem is that 'graphic novel' just came to mean 'expensive comic book' and so what you'd get is people like DC Comics or Marvel Comics—because 'graphic novels' were getting some attention, they'd stick six issues of whatever worthless piece of crap they happened to be publishing lately under a glossy cover and call it ...."
Some in the comics community have objected to the term "graphic novel" on the grounds that it is unnecessary, or that its usage has been corrupted by commercial interests. Writer believes,