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Comic Book Dictionary – Gimme Idea

A gimme idea is an idea that is so good, a comic would be pretty good just by the existence of the gimme idea.

In this regard, I have almost come to look at gimme ideas as almost lazy writing, in the sense that, since the idea is a gimme, the writer doesn’t have to work that hard to make the story cool, because the idea itself is so strong.

A major exception to that rule, I think, is when the writer comes UP with the gimme idea on his or her own, instead of using someone else’s gimme idea (or an obvious gimme idea – an example of an obvious gimme idea is famous heroes fighting each other). Then I think the writer would be silly NOT to use the gimme idea, as he/she came up with it themselves, so should be the one who gets credit for the idea.

An example of a writer using someone else’s gimme idea would be Mark Waid using the gimme idea of Batman being prepared to take down the entire Justice League.

An example of a writer using a gimme idea of his/her own device would be Joe Kelly having Deadpool travel back in time, and having the past be an actual 60s issue of Amazing Spider-Man.

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Another example of a writer using someone else’s gimme idea (very nicely, by the way): Robert Kirkman writing Marvel Zombies.

I think it’s even worse when a writer thinks his own idea is more of a “gimme idea” than it actually is, so you end up with a story with a shaky premise but the writer is phoning it in because he thinks it’s a slam dunk. David Michilinie used to do this alot. He thought Venom was a gimme idea and never bothered to give him a proper motivation or interesting personality. Same with his creation of Taskmaster, he thought the guys powers and novel motivation were enough to carry the character and ended up underutilizing him (by comparison, look how much farther Marv Wolfman was able to take a similar character over at DC, Deathstroke).

How about this “gimme idea”? We pit two sides of the Marvel superheroes universe against each other based on the loose principal that the government is evil. Then we write most everyone out of character. Essentially fucking up our “gimme idea”. Can we get a really good artist on that?

I’m an ass.

BRIAN wrote:
“…Mark Waid using the gimme idea of Batman being prepared to take down the entire Justice League.”

So, is it a “gimme gimme idea” idea if the writer uses the same slam dunk concept twice? Waid had Martian Manhunter ready to take out the League in JLA: Year One (1998), a good two years before his “Tower of Babel” storyline in the monthly.

Like “Monkey in a Wagon vs. Lemur on a Big Wheel?”

Wait, was Martian Manhunter REALLY planning to take down the league in Year One? I thoguht he was just gathering intelligence for its own sake. I recall somebody commenting in Tower of Babel that what J’onn did was different from what Batman did.

In JLA: Year One, J’onn was not compiling information in order to take down the heroes. He was originally gathering information to determine if he could actually trust them. Remember, alien from another world trapped here. His notes were stolen and used to that end, but it was never his intention.

EM, who can’t think of a good example of “gimme idea” right now, thus making this post off-topic and random chatter

A gimme idea is an idea that is so good, a comic would be pretty good just by the existence of the gimme idea.

I dunno…I think this definition might need some work. Surely there’s no guarantee that even the best idea will compensate for really lazy writing. If there were, then we wouldn’t have the “Oh-My-God-How-Did-They-Fuck-THAT-Up” story.

I dunno…I think this definition might need some work. Surely there’s no guarantee that even the best idea will compensate for really lazy writing. If there were, then we wouldn’t have the “Oh-My-God-How-Did-They-Fuck-THAT-Up” story.

I guess it just comes down to my usage of “pretty good.” I meant for it to be an uncomplimentary term.

FunkyGreenJerusalem

October 27, 2006 at 1:43 am

How did the Joe Kelly Deadpool idea work?
He took a story with a masked villain and said it was Deadpool, or he wrote him into the story?

I’m intrigued, as I’ve never heard of this one before.

I guess the Dc-Marvel crossovers are the Ultimate Gimme ideas

How did the Joe Kelly Deadpool idea work?
He took a story with a masked villain and said it was Deadpool, or he wrote him into the story?

At the time, Deadpool had this weird relationship with an old blind woman named Blind Alfred (she was his prisoner, but now was his roommate). The two accidentally were hurtled back in time, where Alfred impersonates Aunt May and Deadpool uses his image device to make himself look like Peter Parker (who he knocks out, thinking he’s just some dumb college kid).

For the rest of the issue, they place “Peter” and “Aunt May” into actual panels from the old comic, with the other characters having the same dialogue, but “Peter” and “Aunt May” making amusing remarks about the other characters (like when “Peter” is disgusted by Harry and Norman Osborn’s weird haircuts or when “Aunt May” remarks that Mary Jane must be on “the crack”).

It’s a classic comedy.

Marvel really needs to re-release the TP of Joe Kelly’s Deadpool. Anybody remember Wizard’s Deadpool #0? The cover had the catchphrase ‘featuring the lamest dead people in the Marvel universe!’. Another gimme-idea.

Surely Bendis’s Secret War was the biggest waste of the best “gimme idea” in recent memory…not least because the gimme idea wasn’t even fully executed!

It was a GREAT idea to answer the question, “How do all the loser villains keep getting their super-expensive weaponry back in working order?” It was a great idea to reveal that they all had a secret backer.

It was, however, a terrible idea to give that backer zero motivation for funding the villains in the first place, and then give her a generic revenge motivation after the heroes find out and try to stop her. To fully execute the idea, Bendis really needed to provide that initial motivation to Lucia von Bardas, and as far as I can tell, he never really bothered.

It was a GREAT idea to answer the question, “How do all the loser villains keep getting their super-expensive weaponry back in working order?” It was a great idea to reveal that they all had a secret backer.

It was, however, a terrible idea to give that backer zero motivation for funding the villains in the first place, and then give her a generic revenge motivation after the heroes find out and try to stop her. To fully execute the idea, Bendis really needed to provide that initial motivation to Lucia von Bardas, and as far as I can tell, he never really bothered.

But didn’t Michelinie basically explain this with the creation of Justin Hammer in Iron Man?

He had Justin Hammer be the guy who would equip supervillains with their hi-tech gear in exchange for a cut of whatever they stole.

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The ultimate Gimme Idea was Star Spangled War Stories. Soldiers vs Dinosaurs. It’s a gimme.

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