THE NIGERIAN COMIC INDUSTRY: An explosion of creativity

Perhaps two years ago when i penned down articles about the Nigerian comic scene, i never knew things would get this explosive pretty soon. I’m excited! Things are not just picking up, i see an explosion of creativity! While critics will have so many things to point at as defects in the fast growing industry, what however strikes me the most is the fact that, take it or leave it, the game is changing. The industry i see today is no longer a dumping ground for any kind of mediocre work. The competition is getting heated up. The standard of quality in the industry is rising. Anyone who decides to venture in to drop just any kind of work will face a rude shock of being lost in the mixed multitude and will probably have a major problem of standing out. This is not to discourage newcomers in the industry but is only an obvious handwriting on the wall telling newcomers to do their homework well because standards are higher now compared to four, five years ago.
Worthy of note, is Comic Republic’s ”Visionary” that took the industry by storm in 2016. By the way, Comic Republic is a promising comic brand here in Nigeria that really caught my attention some years back and i’ve been watching them closely ever since. On a second thought i think they really need no introduction. While my mention of ”Visionary” is not to religate their other titles like: Guardian Prime, Eru, Avonome, Hero Generation, Vanguard Rising, Ireti, Scion Immortal, Aje to the background, Visionary actually stood out in a unique way because it was the reinvention ”kind of” of an African legend ”Sango!”. Another brand which is really trending at the moment is the notable ”Spoof Animation”. It made a powerful re-entry into the industry with the proposed release of its four titles – Voyager (a space travel story that has got a lot of people thinking), Vantage( expect to see a lot of crazy shooting in this title), Boxsa (this reminds me of juju power in our African Magic Movies, lol) and Jinx . Youneek Studios is another brand that is changing the game in the industry. I eagerly look forward to reading the famed ”Malika”, their recent title creating a lot of buzz home and abroad. And how can i forget Peter Daniel’s ”NewBorn”, its a long awaited work actually and a lot of creative energy has gone into it. I believe when its out, it will set the pace for other creative works that will come after it. Hummmmm…..Vor
tex, the brand behind the popular African Superhero ”Strikeguard” deserves a gold medal for their consistency in the Nigerian Comic sphere. I wonder how they perform this magic of consistency, lol.
Just recently, a major Nigerian Comic Brand ”Epoch Comics” really caught my attention with the release of their most recent effort ”Ageis 3, Sheol’s Gate”. So you ask, “Does that mean there was an Aegis 2 and 1?, how come we never heard of it?”. It is interesting to note that Epoch Comics is not a newcomer in the industry. Infact, like ICS Studios, creators of the famous ”Dark Edge” Epoch has been around for a while now albeit on a low key, they are however coming back with a big bang! Aegis 3 is obviously a proof of that. The quality of the art, the story, the concept speaks for itself without needing any hype. When a work is good, it speaks for itself.
I’m about to drop my pen. I hear whispers…..but i think they are going from whispers to echoes. Some people think its high time we have our own African Superhero movies probably like Wonderwoman currently showing in the cinemas for instance which of course was once a comic character. Yes we have the art, brands like Epoch Comics, Comic Republic etc are proof of that. But do we have the well developed stories, concepts and characters? Is it time to root for an African/
Nigerian superhero movie? Or better still won’t it be more ideal for us to focus on growing our stories, concepts and characters more for now??? I leave you to be the judge of that.
I do hope i’ll get the time to write again anytime soon ‘cos writing can be very demanding. Cheers!!!
Art is taken frm Aegis episode 3 with the kind permission of Epoch Comics the brand that produced the comic.
This article was first published on our facebook page in 2017. The comic industry in Nigeria is a lot bigger now