Splash Panel is a graphic novel review blog created by Khaled Abou Alfa way back in November of 2005. As a long-time collector of graphic novels, I was lucky enough to be asked to be the first staff writer, and it was a blast. Unfortunately, burn-out set in and I stopped contributing reviews about a year later. Looking back, I’ve recognized the cause of the burn-out, and thought that it would be worth sharing for future reference.
Splash Panel is unique to the graphic novel review scene due to the fact that we don’t publish negative reviews. If we didn’t enjoy reading it, why would you want to read our review? If we reviewed it, we enjoyed it, end of story. What did this have to do with the burn-out? It’s quite simple, really. I reviewed my favorite graphic novel first, eventually followed by my second, and so on. You always hear that phrase about not playing your best hand first, but sure enough I did. Given that we never post negative reviews on Splash Panel, I immediately set a hurdle that I may never pass.
For some reason, this weighed heavily on my ability to write further reviews. The comic industry has changed and perfect graphic novels are few and far between. How do you positively review something without drawing attention to its faults? The point is that most review sites deal with this every day. You can’t expect perfection from everything, so don’t avoid reviewing something just becomes it doesn’t measure up to your standard of perfection.
From now, starting with Spider-Man: The Other, you can expect to see more reviews on Splash Panel. Not only reviews of perfect graphic novels, but reviews of simply entertaining graphic novels as well. As always, no negative reviews will be posted on Splash Panel, but I’m sure that I’ll be sharing a few here just for your enjoyment.
(Splash Panel was retired long ago, so the links above have been adjusted to direct to either archived content or content re-published here.)