Yesterday’s review of the new FF #1 (featuring the always-wonderful art of Mike Allred) got me to thinking about the concept of varying mileage, especially as regards artists and their creative endeavors.  When I was young, I recall turning up my teenaged nose at the work of Gil Kane, and not understanding why anyone would want to look at Gene Colan’s artwork.  In the years since, I’ve embraced the true awesomeness of those two artists and dozens more that I used to not care for, from Don Heck to Joe Staton to Jack Kirby himself, to the point where I read the same issues I used to hate with a sense of awe and a tinge of shame.  What you like is always going to be subjective, but it’s more than a little bit fascinating to realize that everyone’s favorite artist is someone else’s inexcusable, untalented hack.

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) wants to stress that this is NOT a request for a list of artists you hate, there’s a whole internet for that sort of foolishness, asking:  Are there creators or works of which your opinion has changed for the better, after repeated exposure?


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Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. Jack Kirby and Keith Giffen (particularly his art when he was doing Jack Kirby riffs, a la OMAC) are two artists who I had never been able to stand, but I FINALLY started to get an appreciation for them about a year ago.

    I still cannot stand Ramos or the Romitas though, but I expect (read: hope) over time I’ll learn to appreciate them

  2. To an extent Grant Morrison. Hated everything he did up until I read his Superman stuff. Still not ga-ga over all of his work, but I look at it a bit differently (meaning greater understanding and self reflection) than I did 10 years ago.

    • I agree regarding Grant Morrison.

      I first read “Animal Man” and “Doom Patrol” in the late 80s/early 90s when I was a dumb teenager and I just didn’t get it.

      I didn’t pick up anything else by Morrison until his JLA run when I was (supposedly) older and “wiser.” That run is actually what got me back into comics after the early-90s steered me away from the Big 2.

      Since then I’ve read and enjoyed just about everything he’s done, I even went back and re-read the earlier stuff I didn’t appreciate before I had a better education and “life experience.”

      In retrospect, his run on “Animal Man” is brilliant. “Doom Patrol” has its shining moments, but I still scratch my head about it sometimes.

  3. Frank Quitely is someone with whom I’ve learned to stomach better over the years, at first if I saw his art I’d put the book right back down, now I can look and appreciate.

  4. Jack Kirby and many of the “old school” artists. I remember looking at them thinking it was too simple but now, with Kirby’s work especially , I see how more complex I really is.

  5. Robert Hulshof-Schmidt on

    Steve Ditko – still feels like an acquired taste, but I’ve grown to appreciate the power of his style.
    Carmine Infantino and Gene Colan – always bugged me when I was younger but I can enjoy them with the right stories now. (Inkers do matter…)

    Slightly different take: Dick Dillin. I never disliked him, but I took him for granted. His steady, reliable production on a fairly complex title (JLA) for a DECADE is impressive.

    Reverse take: John Byrne. Still enjoy his art, but it was omnipresent for awhile and I grew weary. I also learned to hate his writing, especially his “I’ll Do It MY Way” reinventions of teams I loved.

  6. Well i used to like M. Night Shamalamadingdong but thats certainly changed in recent years…

    also id just like to say that todays MSQOTD title is just… amazing

    • it seems that i can never read these darn questions right… id like to change my answer to Watchmen! I didnt like it before because i found it difficult to read (hey, i was 15) but now i realize how awesome it is.

  7. I like loud obnoxious music in the form of heavy metal and punk rock. Many GREAT punk and metal acts were products of their time, epitomize the aesthetic of their time, but also never really changed from that time. That being said, the impact they had in their time would prove very influential on the acts that would follow, the acts that bought and listened to their records, and would then go on to make music of their own.

    The comics version of that is Rob Liefeld. I’ve gained an odd appreciation of Liefeld’s art as a loud, obnoxious aesthetic. It is totally of its time, I appreciate that, and I appreciate all the crap that Liefeld has taken as the punchline of a joke for 20 years, but he still does his ‘Rob Liefeld’ thing and is essentially unapologetic about it.

  8. Jhonen Vasquez. My younger self just couldn’t deal with him, either his art or his writing.

    For some reason though, now I really like it. I like his art, both cartoon-y and yet kind of dark feeling, and his sense of humor just really grew on me after awhile. I guess as I matured a bit my tastes also changed. Weird how that happens.

  9. Humberto Ramos couldn’t stand his Runaway art(its what got me to drop the book) but really enjoy his Spiderman its still anime-ish but I like it with spiderman.

  10. Jae Lee’s art left me wanting earlier to the extent that I would not even look at titles that seemed interesting if he was working on it. I picked up the Ozymandias “Before Watchmen” series, and his style has really seemed to have changed for the better.

  11. Actually, yes, but in the world of music.

    When I was younger, I never liked Pearl Jam or Nirvana; I thought they were overplayed & overrated, with the people who worshipped Kurt Cobain not for his music but his death particularly off-putting. Now that I’m older & I don’t hear them every five minutes, I can appreciate PJ’s insightful lyrics and the window into a troubled mind that Nirvana’s music provides. (But the suicide-worshippers still creep me out.)

    • Robert Hulshof-Schmidt on

      Oooh, great example. I lived in Seattle from 1990 – 92 and had an amplified version of the same thing. I still can’t get much past objective appreciation, but it’s better than it was by far. (Suicide worshippers creep me out too.)

    • Wait, wait, wait… Kurt Cobain is dead? Wasn’t he just with Elvis in Vegas last weekend?

      Okay, seriously, I think I get what you mean. I always get a little freaked out when people want to talk about his suicide and “what it means” whenever I say I like Nirvana. I just like the music, and the extant of my feelings on his death are “It is sad”. That is it.

  12. After initially hating his take on Batman (Zur-en-argh!), I’ve come to appreciate some of the things Grant Morrison has done of late. I was really, really close to dropping the book there for a while.

    I’m still having a really hard time learning to like anything Rick Remender’s Marvel NOW! books (‘Uncanny Avengers’ and ‘Captain America’). And, though I was a big fan of John Cassaday’s work on Whedon’s ‘Astonishing X-Men,’ I’m not even enjoying it anymore. (It may just be that I’m generally associating it with my dislike of Remender, but I think it was Captain America’s scale mail and helmet that finally put me off.)

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