BOOM! KAPOW! WHAM! Words and action fly off the pages of the comics as students read them for their nightly homework. That’s right, comics as homework. With the comics as literature class on campus, students can immerse themselves into the art of comics and embrace their inner geek.
The Comics as Literature class is a special one-term class offered during the fall term where students take an in-depth approach to comics and observe the writing techniques, art and other elements like character development, plot line, continuity of comics like ‘Watchmen’ and ‘Batman: Year One’.
“It’s a really interesting class,” said student Bryce Pierson. “I got to have fun and read comics for homework, which not many people can say they get to do. It’s really cool.”
When you think about it, who wouldn’t want to spend time reading comics as homework? Sure, you have to take some notes, but come on, it’s comic books. It gives you a chance to relax a little and unwind with a good comic or two, which sounds like bliss to the ever busy college student.
The class itself is taught by Clackamas English instructor and local author, Trevor Dodge, who has written a book of his own. This may seem like a strange class for an English instructor to teach, but the way that he teaches it makes comics a more refined writing art and viable as an option for a writing teacher to, well, teach.
“What I hope to accomplish with this class is expose people to different types of literature and broaden their horizons,” said Dodge. “It also provides an opportunity for people who want to work in this field to start shaping their career path and get their hands dirty, so to speak.”
Indeed, it seems many students who take this class come away either laden with knowledge of comics they didn’t have before, or a more open mind about what they define as ‘literature.’ The class can also have other applications aside from comics or even writing.
“I took the class before, due to my geeky interest in everything comics,” said student Zach Sherman. “ It’s also an interesting class to take for a potential director, as it’s almost like looking at a well thought out story board, which is where my director’s mind steps in and wonders ‘How could I turn this into a movie?’ It’s a great class to take, even if you aren’t into comics.”
So it can be said that this class isn’t just for the inner geek, but can also be used in more than one application. You could take it from an artist’s perspective, a graphic designer, a writer’s or just a geek who wants to embrace their ‘nerdiness.’ Whatever your angle may be, this class is sure to catch your attention in one way or another.