Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Comics

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In other media section[edit]

Can it be worked on to create a paragraph discussing this section (or sometimes pages) regarding what should or should not be included? In my personal opinion, these sections should only be limited to actual appearances, not just mer mentions or slight references in passing. It could be modeled after the already existing "Popular culture" guideline here. - Favre1fan93 (talk) 20:46, 16 April 2014 (UTC)

This isn't really a meaningful post out of context, so it's surprising that you haven't explained why you think it's a problem that needs to be solved or why it keeps coming up. This has been a recurring issue at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Comics, particularly regarding the TV and movies of the Marvel Cinematic Universe which have mentioned characters that have not yet been depicted on screen. Sometimes it's worth including in the character's article, sometimes it isn't, but the fact is that even mentions of a character have brought a lot of secondary source commentary as there's a lot of interest in the expansion of the MCU and the incorporation of more from the original comic book source materials. So a simplistic prohibition of the sort you're seeking is not only a bad idea that would often disregard how sources treat the subject, but it's also an idea without consensus. postdlf (talk) 21:37, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
I basically agree with you Favre1fan93 on this (if you couldn't tell by all the related threads I've started on WT:COMICS), but I wonder if such an inactive talk page like this is the best place to start it - although an RFC could bring more attention to this issue. (talk) 21:51, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
I apologize for not providing the context for which I was posting here. However, I still think there is some benefit to having something regarding this, beyond the (mainly) isolated incidents regarding MCU mentions. What if a character is just mentioned in an animated TV series, or is referenced in a comic-themed video game (this instance came up recently on the project talk)? It would be nice to have something where we can point to, that says something along the lines of "Are a number of secondary sources talking about this? Does it have importance given its context for which it appeared?", things like that. And through this guideline, I'd like to create a consensus for the matter, because at the moment, I feel it is a lot of varying opinions. - Favre1fan93 (talk) 22:04, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
That seems reasonable to me - I would say start an RFC to attract some responses. (talk) 22:09, 16 April 2014 (UTC)

RfC: Proposed rewording for instructions for disambiguation[edit]

Difficult to say what the outcome is here. The first proposal was clearly a no consensus. The second proposal appears to have unanimous support for change, but there is no consensus for which version of the change is preferred. I suggest someone be bold and edit the MoS to change to one of those, and if that's reverted, have another RfC which is a straight choice between the two. Number 57 19:08, 25 June 2014 (UTC)

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Proposal 1 (withdrawn)[edit]

  • This proposal has been superseded by Proposal 2 below.

The current WikiProject Comics Manual of Style reads:

"When disambiguation is needed use (comics), or (company) where that is not appropriate."

This should be reworded to make it clear that (comics) is a fallback when something more general is not available, especially in the case of characters. Perhaps:

"When disambiguation is needed and a more general disambiguation such as (character) is not applicablesufficient use (comics), or (company) where that is not appropriate."

Curly Turkey (gobble) 21:15, 28 April 2014 (UTC)


Note: Please place rationales in the "Discussion" section so they can be discussed

  • Support as nominator per rationale below. Curly Turkey (gobble) 21:15, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
  • Support Project MOS should supplement the site-wide MOS. Would also be fine with "is not sufficient". AIRcorn (talk) 08:30, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose: "(comics)" is a sufficient disambiguation for all comic book-related content; characters, groups, locations, objects, etc. If a particular incarnation of a comic book-based character becomes notable in its own right then it should have its own article such as Batman in film Symbol support vote.svg or Superman in film Cscr-featured.svg.--TriiipleThreat (talk) 10:50, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose per TriiipleThreat. BOZ (talk) 12:04, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose per TriiipleThreat - Favre1fan93 (talk) 15:22, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
  • Support: It makes sense for "character" to be the default when a particular character has an firm presence in several types of media. As I stated below, each article requires its own consensus and the actual scope of the article should be taken into consideration, using "comics" instead where that is appropriate. It also makes a difference whether we are talking about the character itself or an eponymous series. This guideline should not be mistaken as trumping the need for consensus on each article. Nor is "sitewide consensus" an absolute that dictates the titling for a particular article; only actual policy does that. Taking these things into account, I support modifying the MOS here. Naturally, we will continue to argue about what is appropriate for each article. --GentlemanGhost (converse) 20:13, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose per TriiipleThreat. Fortdj33 (talk) 22:57, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose per TriiipleThreat. postdlf (talk) 23:46, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
  • Support - Curly Turkey's proposal is more in accordance with WP:TITLE policy criteria, and normal WP:DISAMBIGUATION guideline practice. In ictu oculi (talk) 05:17, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose It ain't broke. Why fix it? --BDD (talk) 16:42, 1 May 2014 (UTC)
    • @BDD: The current wording is being cited as the rationale for page moves from (character) to (comics), wasting time and effort, and violating policy. Curly Turkey (gobble) 20:45, 1 May 2014 (UTC)
As long as the (comics) name is accurate, those moves are maintaining consistency with other articles, which is one of our core naming criteria. I don't see how that violates policy. --BDD (talk) 21:01, 1 May 2014 (UTC)
@BDD: Consistency is also broken, as (character) is accepted as the norm for characters in every other medium across Wikipedia, and the content of many of these articles is not limited to comics. It is a violation of policy for local consensus at WP:COMICS to enforce such moves and circumvent global consensus. Curly Turkey (gobble) 21:15, 1 May 2014 (UTC)
I do like consistency, but as long as disambiguators are consistent within a topic, I think it's a fool's errand to try to standardize them all. This comes up in sports fairly frequently. With titles like Foo Barson (tennis), every now and then someone comes along and says, "Hey, he isn't a tennis!" But what would the benefit be to changing it to Foo Barson (tennis player), and applying it to all disambiguated tennis players? That's unclear to me, as is the benefit from this proposal. --BDD (talk) 21:33, 1 May 2014 (UTC)
That's actually a mischaracterization. This argument is made about cases where "a [whatever]" is actually grammatically possible, e.g. "a baseball". The vast majority of WP disambiguations describe the topic, not the over-topic of the topic: "Mike Smith (physicist)", not "Mike Smith (physics)", "The Big One (song)" not "The Big One (music)", etc. This is for good reason, and "Mike Smith (baseball)" clearly illustrates why since Mike Smith is neither a baseball nor a brand of sporting goods. Cases like "Mike Smith (tennis)" should be normalized to "Mike Smith (tennis player)" because they simply make more sense that way and the usage is more consistent. Attempt to mock this idea by suggesting people want this because Mike Smith is not "a tennis" is a blatant straw man fallacy. This is all relevant here because "Mike Smith (comics)" is an unhelpful disambiguation for reasons that never have jack to do with "is Mike Smith 'a comics'?" nonsense. The real questions is "WTF does that mean? Is Mike Smith a superhero secret identity? An artist? A publisher executive? A graphic novel title? A...?" Any pattern of disambiguation that leads to more questions is a very poor pattern of disambiguation.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  01:57, 4 May 2014 (UTC)
@BDD: The current wording is being interpreted as a mandate to move articles on media franchise characters such as Hulk (character) and Wolverine (character) to Hulk (comics) and Wolverine (comics), "fixing" what was never broken. The proposed wording is not an attempt to enforce any standardized disambiguation, but to discourage these time-wasting, policy-breaking moves. You'll probably want to see Propoal 2 below, which makes this intent much clearer. Curly Turkey (gobble) 21:46, 1 May 2014 (UTC)
I believe you're mistaken, or perhaps misreading the page histories. (Incidentally, this may be partially my fault, as I moved Wolverine before I was an admin and seem to have neglected to move the talk page archives along with it.) Wolverine (comics) has long been a stable title. It was moved in January 2013 to (character) but moved back in March, both times as a result of consensus from an RM. See Talk:Wolverine (comics)/Archive 7#Renaming article and the logs for the page. Wolverine (comics) has been the title for over ten years; we had Wolverine (character) for a bit under three months! Hulk has never been the subject of an RM (until now, though it's a different question), but Hulk (comics) has been around over 12 years. Hulk (character) was the title for a few hours (!) in 2010. Again, see the page log. --BDD (talk) 22:16, 1 May 2014 (UTC)
@BDD: If the Wolverine move were simply a matter of consenus that (comics) was more appropriate for reasons XX, YY, and ZZ, that would be one thing, but that is clearly not the case—the rationale is explicitly "The standard is to have (comics) in the title, not (character)"—this Project's MoS simply cannot mandate such a thing (and technically doesn't, but is being misrepresented as doing so). Will we next have to undergo RMs for articles like Tintin (character) now that it has been pointed out that it's not following the "standard" and Tintin (comics) is free and ready for such a move? Curly Turkey (gobble) 23:15, 1 May 2014 (UTC)
  • Support: because "(comics)" is clearly not a sufficient disambiguation for all comic book-related content, much of which refers to more than one thing (titles, characters, etc.), and much of which is not only in comics media. Disambiguations like " (character)" make more sense except where the character has separate articles for comics vs. movie version, and so on. The preference of this wikiproject for using a terribly unclear disambiguator, " (comics)", which often raises more questions than it answers, is not a policy, and a WP:LOCALCONSENSUS here does not override wider consensuses that, e.g., disambiguations should make sense and that the normal pattern for them is to have them refer to the topic, not to the over-topic of the topic: "Jane Garcia (musician)" not "Jane Garcia (music)", thus "Jane Garcia (character)", "Jane Garcia (comics character)", "Jane Garcia (comic book)", "Jane Garcia (graphic novel)", "Jane Garcia (artist)", "Jane Garcia (comics artist)", "Jane Garcia (publisher)", "Jane Garcia (fictional ship)", whatever on earth it is that the hopelessly vague "Jane Garcia (comics)" might refer to. The rationale I give here applies equally to either of the revised options of the RfC/poll below.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  02:31, 4 May 2014 (UTC)
    • While I'm thrilled to see another "support", the situation with comics creators is a lot more complicated than you're aware, especially in the assembly-line comic book world. Jeff Smith (cartoonist) and Jack Davis (cartoonist) are easy to disambiguate with "cartoonist" because they handle all the chores of comics creation, but in the superhero world there is a division of labour—fine if someone did nothing but artwork, but so many have had different roles over their careers: Al Feldstein doesn't need disambiguation, but he's an example of someone who has taken on the roles of writer, artist, and editor, usually not at the same time, or at least not every combination at the same time. Then there are "plotters" who are not necessarily writers, pencillers, inkers, colourists ... who again often take different roles throughout their careers. And then there are those artists such as Frank Miller (comics) who have handled all the creation chores, but whom their fans would be mortified to have called a "cartoonist" (the industry doesn't rake in enough to deal with these fans' psychological issues). "(comics)" isn't perfect, but it's the best we're likely to get. Curly Turkey (gobble) 02:46, 4 May 2014 (UTC)


  • Sitewide consensus is that disambiguation should be as general as reasonable—when there is more than one "Schloing", "Schloing (band)" is preferred to "Schloing (rock band)" except when there are two bands in different genres named "Schloing".
    In the cases of articles that are specifically about comics—say, Louis Riel (comics), which is about a specific book, and not a media franchise—"comics" is the most reasonably general disambiguation.
    On the other hand, Hulk (character) redirects to Hulk (comics), even though (a) (character) is more general; (b) Hulk, the character, is a long-established media franchise, in movies, TV shows, etc etc.; and (c) the article is under both {{WikiProject Comics}} and {{WikiProject fictional characters}}.
    There are precedents for this: there is no Tintin (comics) (the series is at The Adventures of Tintin), but there is Tintin (character). Outside WP Comics (character) appears to be the norm in these situations. Curly Turkey (gobble) 21:15, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
To be fair on the Hulk redirect, a quick scan of that article suggest that it actually has very little on non-comics uses of the Hulk; while the fact that it has been adapted to other forms gets two sentences in the lede, searching for "television" and "movie" and "film" through the article finds me one paragraph on reaction to the Ang Lee movie. There is no mention of David Banner. So I suppose the question is whether, in the general case, these articles 1) really are about the character in a cross-media sense, and 2) they do not more frequently need to be disambiguated from similarly-named character in other media (much as, say, Rocky (character) would still leave you wondering if it meant Rocky Balboa or Rocket J. Squirrel). --Nat Gertler (talk) 22:07, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
@NatGertler: If there are two "characters" called "Rocky", then further disambiguation is warranted—there are well-established conventions for that (check out The Sleepers (San Francisco band) and The Sleepers (Chicago band)). The further disambiguation is only done when necessary—there's obviously no necessity when the more general title redirects to the more specific one, as in the case of Hulk (character).
(And isn't it suspicious that there is no mention of Lou Ferrigno in the Hulk article? Kinda tells you there's a lot of work to be done on it to meet the standards on comprehensiveness.) Curly Turkey (gobble) 22:35, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
Obviously, not everyone agrees with this idea, as evidenced by the recent discussion at Talk:Hydra (Marvel Comics). The policy is "Usually, titles should be precise enough to unambiguously define the topical scope of the article, but no more precise than that." (WP:AT) The scope of the articles in which this project takes an interest varies; some are wholly focused on comic books, some are more broadly focused on several types of media. So, to my mind, it needs to be considered on a case-by-case basis. I don't think that we ought to say that "character" is the preferred term of disambiguation, because in some cases, it won't be. Perhaps we could change the wording to give the option of "character", "comics", or "company" depending on the scope of the article? --GentlemanGhost (converse) 22:41, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
@GentlemanGhost: The argument given there was that Hulk (comics) falls under WikiProject Comics, and that the WP:CMC guideline states only (comics) or (company) as acceptable disambiguations for articles under the Project. Of course, this interpretation contradicts policy. What is necessary is not a longer list of options that this Project agrees to "allow", but clarification that this Projects supplementary MoS does not override the sitewide MoS—that the Project-specific disambiguations are not default disambiguations.
The spirit of the current wording is that we prefer "comics" to other terms ("comic", "graphic novel", "comic book", "graphic album", "sequential art", etc). It was never meant to mandate "comics" over something more general, and it was never meant to override (only supplement) sitewide guidelines. Curly Turkey (gobble) 23:05, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
@Curly Turkey:Alternatively, instead of "is not applicable", we might say "is not precise enough." Every term which is more general would naturally still be applicable, much like the example of "band" vs. "rock band." Rock bands are a subset of bands, so both terms are applicable. But in some situations, merely using "band" may not be precise enough. Also, for the specific example of Hulk (comics), on the face of it, I would think that would be a great example of an article which might be titled "Foo (character)" instead of "Foo (comics)." The character has a well-established history—indeed a life of its own—in media besides comics. Of course, it sounds like the article doesn't reflect that and is limited in scope to mostly the comics medium. But I am inclined to your argument that it ought to cover more, at which point a name change would be appropriate. --GentlemanGhost (converse) 00:48, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
As long as the wording doesn't put the idea into people's heads that the disambigs here should be the first option, I'm more or less fine with it. I'm afraid that "is not precise enough" likely would encourage those who are not familiar with the rationale behind having general disambigs to find something ever more precise: "Oh, this isn't just comics, it's a graphic novel ... but not just any kind of graphic novel, it's a ..." As a comics fan, I'm sure you're more than familiar with the obsessive hairsplitting comics fans are naturally drawn to.
How about "is not sufficient"? Curly Turkey (gobble) 01:59, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
That would work for me, but of course, I'm hardly the only opinion on this. :-) --GentlemanGhost (converse) 03:52, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
  • (Replies to TriiipleThreat's oppose rationale)
    1. The proposed wording is only a clarification of the established sitewide consensus—that we begin with a generalized disambiguation and then narrow it down when that's not sufficient. You are challenging not simply the wording but the sitewide consensus itself—that we should start more specific, and only work backwards to a generalized version if the content warrants it. You'll have to explain to the community why WikiProject Comics should be the lone exception to the general consensus—local consensus simply does not have the power to override it (that's policy, as you know).
    2. When and how content should be forked into separate articles can only be determined by the content of those articles and the editors working on them, and not mandated here—such a radical departure from accepted norms that another RfC would be required.
  • Curly Turkey (gobble) 12:30, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
      1. "(comics)" is sufficiently general.
        • You haven't explained why WP:CMC should be the only WikiProject to be granted this exception from the sitewide norm, or why attempts to conform to that norm should be discouraged. Curly Turkey (gobble) 23:26, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
      2. I wasn't proposing any changes just reiterating that when an incarnation of a character or other such comic book-based entity is deemed notable per our existing standards then it should receive its own article thus negating the need for a different disambiguated name. Until such time, the scope of the article is usually primarily focused on the base "comics" version.--TriiipleThreat (talk) 14:29, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
        • There's is nothing in the link that has anything to do with the scope of articles, or that suggests in any way that an article on a character should focus on the medium in which it first appeared. Such decisions are editorial decisions that should not be handled by a MoS in the first place, and is unrelated to this RfC. I'll repeat: this RfC is about a proposed change in wording to conform to existing guidelines. If you want ot change the guideline itself (which can't be done at the level of a local MoS), you'll have to launch a separate RfC. Curly Turkey (gobble) 23:26, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
Again, I am not nor am not proposing any changes. The fact of the matter is that we are currently discussing comic characters, other derivative incarnations can be deemed notable or not based on their own merits.--TriiipleThreat (talk) 09:09, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
  1. "We" are discussing no such thing—we are discussing a proposed clarification of wording of a single passage so that it conforms to well-established global consensus to avoid future misunderstanding and conflict.
  2. Whether "derivative incarnations" should or should not be spun off into separate articles is not something that can be predetermined by any WikiProject (no WikiProject can OWN any article). There is nothing like consensus for that at any level of Wikipedia, and it is something that cannot be determined locally, at the WP:CMC level. It's disturbing that someone could be so determined to use this WikiProject to circumvent global consensus. Curly Turkey (gobble) 09:35, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
All articles are judged against WP:GNG.--TriiipleThreat (talk) 10:28, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
How on Earth is that related to anything that's been discussed on this page? Curly Turkey (gobble) 10:57, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
See above. I'm growing bored of this circular discussion. I've stated my opposition, carry-on without me.--TriiipleThreat (talk) 11:09, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
(edit conflict) @TriiipleThreat: Waitaminnit—waitaminnit—you're not seriously suggesting that WP:GNG says that noted appearances of characters in different media are mandated to be segregated into separate articles, are you?! And you're not seriously polluting an RfC about precision of disambiguation with this horse manure, are you?! Curly Turkey (gobble) 11:14, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
Gentlemen, please, dial it back a notch. I can't see how this line of discussion is helping anything. BOZ (talk) 14:13, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
I agree that "(comics)" is sufficiently general. Per WP:TITLE, article titles should be "precise enough to unambiguously define the topical scope of the article, but no more precise than that". Therefore per WP:NCC, "(comics)" should be the default disambiguation for all comics-related articles, unless something more specific is required. Fortdj33 (talk) 23:07, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
@Fortdj33: The issue is that the guideline is in conflict with higher-level guidelines established with a far broader level of community consensus. As per Wikipedia:Consensus#Levels of consensus: "Consensus among a limited group of editors, at one place and time, cannot override community consensus on a wider scale. For instance, unless they can convince the broader community that such action is right, participants in a WikiProject cannot decide that some generally accepted policy or guideline does not apply to articles within its scope."—which is policy, not mere guideline. Curly Turkey (gobble) 23:26, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
Curly Turkey, with all due respect you are arguing against yourself. You acknowledge above, that there is a community wide consensus for article titles to "begin with a generalized disambiguation and then narrow it down when that's not sufficient". WP:NCC already follows this policy, by using "(comics)" as the general disambiguation for all comics-related articles, which was decided by consensus. Using "(character)" or "(Marvel Comics)" would be more specific, not less. Fortdj33 (talk) 00:43, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
@Fortdj33: I can't follow your argument how a character article disambiguated with (comics) could possibly be less specific than (character). How can moving that to (character) restrict the scope of the article? A character such as Tintin (character) can appear in multiple media. Further, (Marvel Comics) is not restricted to comics, as the flood of Marvel movies in recent years attests. Curly Turkey (gobble) 02:18, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
Further, you keep ignoring that, as per Wikipedia:Consensus#Levels of consensus, local consensus cannot trump sitewide policy—plus, the local consensus was to prefer (comics) to (comic), (graphic novel), (sequential art), etc, and not to mandate (comics) as disambiguation even when a more general disambiguation is sufficient (which the Project simply cannot do). Curly Turkey (gobble) 02:21, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
@Curly Turkey: Even though I agree with you about changing the wording, I have yet to see evidence that the broader Wikipedia community has said that they prefer "character" to "comics." So far, it seems like it's mostly you (and now me). Are there discussions about this which have taken place which we should be aware of? (FWIW, I'm not being flippant, I'm just asking.) --GentlemanGhost (converse) 00:50, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
I've never insisted that "character" was preferred to "comics", only that something more general is preferred to something more specific. Even at the "Hydra" discussion I never insisted on "character", and neither does the wording I've proposed does insist on "character".
  • Per WP:PRECISION: "titles should be precise enough to unambiguously define the topical scope of the article, but no more precise than that."
  • per WP:NATURALDIS: "when a more detailed title is necessary to distinguish an article topic from another, use only as much additional detail as necessary. For example, it would be inappropriate to title an article "Queen (rock band)", as Queen (band) is precise enough to distinguish the rock band from other uses of the term Queen."
These are both from Wikipedia:Article titles, which is hatnoted with this: "This page documents an English Wikipedia policy, a widely accepted standard that all editors must normally follow. Changes made to it should reflect consensus."
The insistance that a WikiProject can mandate a level of precision article titling that conflicts with the letter and spirit of widely-accepted sitewide policy is not acceptable. The idea presented here is that "(comics)" should come first and the more general "(character)" (for instance) only allowed when it proves its necessary is the reverse of what sitewide clearly policy states—we simply do not go from one level of precision to a more general one, nor can a local guideline override sitewide policy. Curly Turkey (gobble) 02:12, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
Ah, but that idea isn't presented in the MOS, even though it has been expressed here in the comments by some editors. Nowhere does it say that "comics" is preferred over "character". Rather, it says that when you are disambiguation titles for comics-related article, the preferred keyword is "comics." Editors ought to take into consideration that when an article's scope is broader than comics that a more general keyword might be needed, which is why I support the change in wording for the MOS. That said, I don't think this is a case of trying to overrule consensus, but rather a disagreement on how best to implement it. --GentlemanGhost (converse) 20:17, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
The interpration of the WP:CMC/MoS that (comics) is the default has been expressed by more than one editor here (Fortdj33: "'(comics)' should be the default disambiguation for all comics-related articles"; Dream Focus: "The standard is to have (comics) in the title, not (character)"), and was the rationale behind the move requests for Hulk, Wolverine, and Hydra. This interpreatation is being enforced, and reinforced through precedent and inertia, and time and effort is being wasted on unnecessary (possibly policy-breaking) moves. The proposed rewording is intended to clarify policy discourage this behaviour. Curly Turkey (gobble) 20:43, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
I'm of two minds about this. On the one hand, I've never understood why we have Wolverine at Wolverine (comics) when (for example) José Jiménez is at José Jiménez (character) and George Hayduke is at George Hayduke (character). Nothing anyone has said above explains it, either. However, changing the project guidelines means moving a whole ton of articles, and now that it's been proposed I have to admit that "This is the way everyone else does it" isn't by itself sufficient reason for such an undertaking. And when I hunted for a better reason, I came up short. I had assumed that there was a site-wide policy on naming fictional characters, but WP:Naming conventions (characters) clearly indicates that there is not. Curly Turkey provides a good rationale above, but there's an intrinsic flaw with it: "(comics)" isn't really any more or less detailed/precise than "(character)". They're just different ways of diambiguating; not all comics subjects are fictional characters, nor are all fictional characters from comics. In summary: I'm ashamed to say this, since I was the one who brought it up at Talk:Hydra (Marvel Comics), but I don't know if we have strong enough reason to prefer "(character)" over "(comics)".--NukeofEarl (talk) 18:02, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
@NukeofEarl: Did I propose a mass rename? No, I proposed a change in wording to the WP:CMC/MoS to reflect sitewide consensus to avoid having moves proposed based on "the WP:CMC/MoS said so". Curly Turkey (gobble) 19:25, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
To make this whole experience even more work, you would have to evaluate every comics character individually rather than do a mass-move with bots or a plugin or something. Sometimes there is more than one character (comics or other medium) known by a certain name, so we would literally have to hash this out with every single comics character currently using a disambiguator. And if we don't have a more solid rationale beyond "following the herd", that sounds like a lot of un-fun manual work. Unless we have a mandate from above stating "move everyone to (character) or else", I can't see a particular reason why we need to do this. BOZ (talk) 18:11, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
As for the specific example of Wolverine, it was actually moved last year (after a brief discussion) to Wolverine (character) and moved back after a much longer discussion. BOZ (talk) 18:11, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
"Conforming to sitewide policy isn't a lot of fun" isn't a very strong argument for WP:CMC to be the only WikiProject not "following the herd"—besides, it's no less fun than moving Tintin (character), Kick-Ass (character), Dilbert (character), Garfield (character), Astro Boy (character), Asterix (character) ... plus, the rationale for moving Wolverine back was "The standard is to have (comics) in the title, not (character)"—once again using a narrow interpretation of this local guideline as rationale for the move (rather than to solve any practical problem). How many times has that happened, I wonder, and how much "un-fun manual work" has it consumed with discussions and movings back and forth? It appears Hulk (character) was moved to Hulk (comics) in 2010.
Moving titles with (comic), (graphic novel), etc, in them to (comics) was no fun either, but eventually it was done (in fact, I did a lot of that work). Curly Turkey (gobble) 19:17, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
Well, if the two sides are based on arbitrary reasons ("everybody else is doing it" vs. "it's a lot of work to make a big change"), then I prefer to stick with leaving things as they are. That's my position and I'm sticking with it. BOZ (talk) 19:41, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
Following policy is an "arbitrary reason"? Please explain. Curly Turkey (gobble) 19:53, 30 April 2014 (UTC)

Frankly, when you start talking about horse manure, you've really stepped in it. --GentlemanGhost (converse) 18:18, 30 April 2014 (UTC)

Proposal 2 (tweaked to remove "character")[edit]

The intention of the above proposal was to clarify that the WPComics Manual of Style cannot override the sitewide Manual of Style or policies such as Wikipedia:Article Titles or Wikipedia:Consensus#Levels of consensus. Somehow some editors have seen the proposed wording as preferring or even mandating (character) as a disambiguation, when (character) was only provided as an example. I'll now propose another wording that (hopefully) gets to the heart of the matter. Instead of the current:

"When disambiguation is needed use (comics), or (company) where that is not appropriate."

I propose something like:

  • (1) "When a more general disambiguation is not sufficient use (comics), or (company) where that is not appropriate."

Or, to make the rationale behind the ever-aggravating seemingly-plural "comics" clearer:

  • (2) "When a more general disambiguation is not sufficient use (comics)—to signify the medium—or (company) where that is not appropriate."

Notified: @Aircorn:, @TriiipleThreat:, @BOZ:, @Favre1fan93:, @GentlemanGhost:, @Fortdj33:, @Postdlf:, @In ictu oculi:, @NatGertler:, Wikipedia:WikiProject Comics, Wikipedia:WikiProject Literature, Wikipedia:WikiProject Fictional characters, Wikipedia:Manual of Style, Wikipedia:Article titles.

———Curly Turkey (gobble) 23:46, 30 April 2014 (UTC)


Note: Please place rationales in the "Discussion" section so that discussion can be centralized

  • Support either (prefer (2)) as nom. Curly Turkey (gobble) 23:46, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
  • Support, preferring (1). GentlemanGhost (converse) 00:45, 1 May 2014 (UTC)
  • Support in spirit (preferring 2), but "(comics)" is a poor disambiguator". "Mike Smith (comics)" is an unhelpful disambiguation because it simply raises the questions "WTF does that mean? Is Mike Smith a superhero secret identity? An artist? A publisher executive? A graphic novel title? A...?" Any pattern of disambiguation that leads to more questions is a very poor pattern of disambiguation. We avoid disambiguations like "Mike Smith (physics)" for a reason (no matter how many tendentious blowhards insist on that pattern in a few sports and other areas, for now). I support the notion of this proposal, that this wikiproject cannot dictate a " (comics)" disambiguator where others make more sense. One fix at a time, I guess. I.e., my "support" here is for reducing this project's WP:OWNishness and should not be take as support for their " (comics)" thing in the first place. See my rationale for support of the original RfC/survey, above.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  02:32, 4 May 2014 (UTC)
  • Support in principle, but I also have problems with the proposed wording, as it may reinforce the problem from the opposite side - from below. There are times when (comics) is too generic, and it should be further disambiguated when there are several related articles for the same character or series with the same title; but the current wording makes it look like (comics) would still be preferred in such cases. I'm looking at you, Wolverine (comics) and Wolverine (comic book). I would add some wording reinforcing the idea in WP:PRECISION that "titles should be precise enough to unambiguously define the topical scope of the article, so (comics) should be further disambiguated if there are several comic articles with the same base title". Diego (talk) 21:03, 8 May 2014 (UTC)


  • The interpration of the WPComics MoS that (comics) is the default has been expressed by more than one editor (e.g. "'(comics)' should be the default disambiguation for all comics-related articles") and has been used as the rationale in move requests (e.g. at Talk:Wolverine (comics)/Archive 6#Renaming article: "The standard is to have (comics) in the title, not (character)") This misinterpretation is being enforced and reinforced through precedent and inertia, and time and effort is being wasted on unnecessary moves that do not conform with sitewide policy. The proposed rewording is intended to clarify policy and discourage this behaviour, and not to mandate for or against any particular disambiguation scheme. Curly Turkey (gobble) 23:46, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
  • The proposed addition in (2) serves two purposes:
    1. To make it clear that "comics" refers to the medium, and not to the plural of "comic"
    2. To make it clear that "comics" is preferred to other synonyms or closely related words ("comic", "graphic novel", "sequential art", etc), rather than to more general terms if appropriate—so that the MoS cannot be interpreted as, by default, requiring Tintin (character) or Mad (magazine) to be moved to (comics).
  • Curly Turkey (gobble) 23:46, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
  • I appreciate the goal, but I think it's still phrased confusingly due to inconsistency, at least as far as I understand it. We want to encourage having the actual string (comics) in the title (as in, say Panel (comics) to distinguish from say Panel (conversation) and Panel (electronics) and such... but I don't think we're generally encouraging the phrase (company); there may be some cases where that actual phrasing might be needed (to distinguish, say Dark Horse Comics (company) from Dark Horse Comics (comics title)), but I think in general we're trying to distinguish Daredevil (Lev Gleason Publications) from Daredevil (Marvel Comics). --Nat Gertler (talk) 01:07, 1 May 2014 (UTC)
    • @NatGertler: Well, there are a number of ways to handle that: for example (company name) or something. Curly Turkey (gobble) 01:22, 1 May 2014 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Wrong venue, and merge titles material to Wikipedia:Naming conventions (comics)[edit]

The form that article tiles should take is not a matter for the MOS (a style guideline for the content of articles), this is a matter for the Article title policy and its naming conventions (see also the disambiguation guidline), Therefore this talk page is not the place to hold RfCs on the titles of articles. -- PBS (talk) 03:00, 25 August 2014 (UTC)

PBS: The discussion was specifically about wording that appeared in MOS:COMIC. You're suggesting discussion of the appropriateness of wording that appears in MOS:COMIC should take place elsewhere? Curly Turkey ⚞¡gobble!⚟ 03:09, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
Yes this is a Manual of Style (MOS) sub-page guideline . It is not a naming convention guideline (a sub-page of the Article title policy. The MOS and AT are semi-detached. The Manual of Style worries about the sytle content, AT worries about the title of the article. While the two are often similar they are not he same and whether a page has a dab extension of (comic) or (character) or whatever is definitely not a style issue but one of titling. -- PBS (talk) 03:19, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
Please, PBS, read this very, very carefully: this discussion at Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Comics was very specifically about wording that actually appeared in Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style, and whether it should be kept or reworded in Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Comics. You're suggesting that wording that appears in Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Comics be discussed elsewhere than Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Comics? That's simply not credible. Curly Turkey ⚞¡gobble!⚟ 03:29, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
I always read things with care! Yes "Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Comics was very specifically about wording that actually appeared in Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style, and whether it should be kept or reworded in Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Comics." I agree. "You're suggesting that wording that appears in Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Comics be discussed elsewhere than Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Comics? " No I am not. I am stating that anything to do with changing the rules on how an article is titled should be addressed to the talk page of the AT policy, or its naming conventions which explain and enhance (but do not contradict) the policy page. In this case the specific convention is Wikipedia talk:Naming conventions (comics). -- PBS (talk) 03:53, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
After skimming thorough this MOS guideline and the Wikipedia talk:Naming conventions (comics) I cannot see anyting in the naming convention that concents itself with the internal style of an article, however there is a very large section of this manual of style guideline that ought to be removed with any details that there is a consensus to keep merged into the Wikipedia talk:Naming conventions (comics) -- PBS (talk) 04:03, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
  • Right, this merge of naming conventions material out of this MOS page and into the comics NC page was proposed in May, unopposed. So, it should proceed immediately. Three months is way more time than necessary for objections to have been raised.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  15:21, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
  • Just an observation: I have a really, really hard time taking this wikiproject's venting about article titles seriously when it cannot even bother to merge its own forked naming convention material after over two years.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  23:43, 11 January 2017 (UTC)

Request for Comment: Quotes and italics[edit]

Consensus here is to adopt the initial proposal, i.e. to add "comic book features" to the list of items that use quotation marks. It is agreed that there may be some exceptions. (non-admin closure) Dionysodorus (talk) 12:14, 7 July 2016 (UTC)

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Currently, Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Comics#Titles specifies that "comic book series, comic strips and comics publications should be italicized. For the titles of comic book storylines, chapters, comic strip episodes, an individual editorial cartoon or gag panel, editors should use quotation marks." It give as examples:

* Identity Crisis, the title of a DC Comics limited series, should be italicized. "Identity Crisis", the title of a Spider-Man storyline that leads to the creation of the Slingers, should be in quotation marks. [...]

  • In 2006, Marvel published the "Civil War" cross-over event. The flagship title of the event is the limited series Civil War.

The MOS does not specify comic-book features. These currently appear generally in quote marks, i.e., the feature "Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD" in Strange Tales as opposed to the series Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD. But this is not formal MOS. How should the MOS address features? --Tenebrae (talk) 14:34, 11 May 2016 (UTC)

If something is part of a larger whole, it should be in quotes. IE, television episodes, chapters, or storylines. So features, such as Nick Fury, Agents of SHIELD should be in quotes. - Favre1fan93 (talk) 18:20, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
Agreed that "features" should be listed to the list of things quoted. "The "Let's Eat Some Lobster" installment of Goodwin and Simonson's "Manhunter" backup feature in Detective Comics is consider the apex of comics homeopathy. --Nat Gertler (talk) 21:35, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
I agree with the editors above that features should be in quote marks, and offer as an example this excerpt from Ernie Hart...

Hart also worked on "Pookey the Poetical Pup" and "Ding-a-Ling the Little Bellboy" in Krazy Komics; "Wacky Willie" and "Andy Wolf & Bertie Mouse" in Terrytoons Comics; "Skip O'Hare" in Comedy Comics; and the heroic-adventure feature "Victory Boys" for Timely. Other Golden Age comics work includes "Egbert and the Count" and "Marmaduke Mouse" for Quality Comics' Hit Comics...

which I believe would be highly confusing to the average reader if rendered

Hart also worked on Pookey the Poetical Pup and Ding-a-Ling the Little Bellboy in Krazy Komics; Wacky Willie and Andy Wolf & Bertie Mouse in Terrytoons Comics; Skip O'Hare in Comedy Comics; and the heroic-adventure feature Victory Boys for Timely. Other Golden Age comics work includes Egbert and the Count and Marmaduke Mouse for Quality Comics' Hit Comics...

--Tenebrae (talk) 19:27, 12 May 2016 (UTC)
This is not that hard to understand. In the world and on Wikipedia, italics are used for titles of longer works. Titles of shorter works are enclosed in double quotation marks. Ongoing comics features are major works that belong in the list of "comic book series, comic strips and comics publications". That is why Nick Fury, Agents of SHIELD, Little Annie Fanny, and Krazy Komics are in italics, as they are major titles. Any minor works shorter or less significant than features or series don't belong in that list. We're not going to set up a rule that directly contradicts the style rules of the overall MOS or the style rules of the wider English language. Perhaps Curly Turkey can also comment. —Prhartcom 12:59, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
The obvious case the commenters above have missed is when there is an ongoing feature in a publication with individual titled episodes (which is normally the case, no?). Given a periodical titled Comics Monthly, you might have an ongoing series The Adventures of Talky the Duck, whose first episode is called "Talky Learns to Talk". Both the periodical and series get italics and the episode gets quotemarks. This may or may not be "confusing", but it's the way it is, and quotemarking the series would not make it less confusing. It's not the "being featured in a periodical" that determines whether it gets quotemarked, which is irrelevant—after all, something like Ranma ½ ran as its own series in North America, but as one of many features in Weekly Shōnen Sunday in Japan.
Check out what the Chicago Manual of Style says: "8.194 Cartoons. Titles of regularly appearing cartoons or comic strips are italicized. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 13:46, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
I'd have to respectfully disagree with Prhartcom and my good and longtime colleague Curly. I do find the second graf in the Ernie Hart example confusing, and I believe we should strive for clarity. I think saying, essentially, that " Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD was in Strange Tales until it became Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD " isn't the clearest way of expressing this.
I do agree with other longtime WikiProject Comics editors Favre1fan93 and Nat Gertler, the latter of whom is certainly an expert on comic strips. A comic strip really isn't the same thing as a comic-book feature. Indeed, that distinction in the early days of comic books helped define the new medium itself. --Tenebrae (talk) 15:45, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
Tenebrae: I think you need to consider my example again. How is
The first episode of The Adventures of Talky the Duck, titled "Talky Learns to Talk", appeared in Comics Monthly #238.
any more or less confusing than
The first episode of "The Adventures of Talky the Duck", titled "Talky Learns to Talk", appeared in Comics Monthly #238.
 ? It's six of one, half dozen of the other. Regardless, italicizing series is what is done throughout Wikipedia, and is what styleguides recommend. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:21, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
I did a quick Gnews search on "Little Annie Fanny" Playboy (and, to be clear, quotes there are to tell Google to distinguish the phrase, and not to search for quotes), and checked through the first two pages of listings, skipping those where the term referred to the character or a book collection of the strip
Quotation marks used in
Title case but otherwise unmarked in
Italicized in
So this sample suggests that:
  1. mainstreamy sources lean toward quotation marks,
  2. comics or pop culture specialty outlets lean toward italics, and
  3. the folks at Comic Book Resources have been smoking funny papers.
(And, with an appreciative tip of the hat to Tenebrae, I'll note that what expertise I have in strips takes a steep dip once one gets away from the topic of Charles M. Schulz's "Peanuts".) --Nat Gertler (talk) 16:33, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
Nat Gertler—note also that
  • the NYT article also puts Harvey Kurtzman's Jungle Book in quotemarks
  • the Jewish Journal also puts Superman Is Jewish?: How Comic Book Superheroes Came to Serve Truth, Justice, and the Jewish-American Way in quotemarks (and that's the book the review is about!)
  • The BoingBoing article ALL-CAPS periodical titles, rather than italicizing them
We could say these sources follow different standards than Wikipedia (in which case the examples don't apply), or we could say they screwed up. Here's a Comics Journal article, by the way, that italicizes. Fantagraphics also italicizes it in their Humbug book. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:09, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
Again, I would advocate following how it's done in the mainstream, to avoid Wikipedia looking arbitrarily contrarian. To answer Curly's question above, it's rare to given the title of a story and the name of the feature together — we do but rarely mention specific story names — while it's extremely common to say such-and-such feature ran in such-and-such comic-book series. --Tenebrae (talk) 21:28, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
Again, I would advocate following how it's done in the mainstream, to avoid Wikipedia looking arbitrarily contrarian.—you seem to be suggesting that the way we do things at Wikipedia is not mainstream. It is, as I've demonstrated—I mean, it doesn't get more mainstream than Chicago. Questions:
  • Can you find a style guide that suggests serials should be quotemarked?
  • Do you suggest quotemarking Little Orphan Annie as well?
  • How do you suggest we handle Ranma? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 23:12, 17 May 2016 (UTC)
Let me quickly add that I should've noticed and noted that the Boing Boing invocation is actually quoting from a Society Of Illustrators press release, so may reflect that group's style rather than Boing Boing itself. --Nat Gertler (talk) 03:59, 18 May 2016 (UTC)
"Can you find a style guide that suggests serials should be quotemarked?" Yes, the AP Style Guide, although it does not specify comics separately but uses them for series of other sorts. However, the AP Style is built around not using italics at all, so that explains the NYT usage, but also suggests that our general usage is closer to Chicago. I'm looking solely at summaries of Chicago, and not seeing 8.194 in context, so I'm left wondering whether strips are being discussed strictly within the context of newspaper features; it's interesting that Chicago offers a different answer for newspaper columns, which gets neither italics nor quotes, even though they seem a similar situation. --Nat Gertler (talk) 15:40, 18 May 2016 (UTC)
Just answering questions that were asked above. In addition to Nat's note about AP Stylebook:
Little Orphan Annie is a comic strip, and MOS is to italicized comic strips, so I'm not sure why the question.
Manga is something entirely different. It's not the same form or in some cases even the same medium as American comic books.
And actually, as most journalists will tell you, Chicago Manual of Style is not as mainstream as the much more widely used AP. --Tenebrae (talk) 22:26, 18 May 2016 (UTC)
"Little Orphan Annie is a comic strip"—as is Little Annie Fanny.
"the much more widely used AP"—in newssources, not publications such as books (and encyclopaedias). More important, AP gives a rationale: "italic cannot be sent on AP news wires"—AP thus has Little Orphan Annie, Action Comics, and A Contract with God in quotemarks (and look! NYT does put Contract in quotes!) If we are going to follow AP, then we'll be at odds with the whole rest of Wikipedia without even solving the problem you have that the titles are "highly confusing" when they're formatted the same. In sum: what you're proposing does not follow the AP styleguide, nor any other.
"Manga is something entirely different"—except that it's not, neither is serialized prose fiction or anything else in the case of title formatting. You're proposing a change that has no support from styleguides, is inconsistent with the rest of Wikipedia, and is needlessly complicated. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:59, 18 May 2016 (UTC)
Well, two good and longtime editors can agree to disagree, particularly on the post immediately above. In hopes that we can get more editors than us few here, I've posted a nuetral invitation at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Comics for other editors to weigh in. --Tenebrae (talk) 23:17, 18 May 2016 (UTC)
I've notified WP:MOS as well. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 00:17, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
I have no strong opinion either way. I would put a feature in quotes, but only because it seems more natural to me. I think some examples could be given to show where either method breaks down, but that just means the sentence structure needs to be reworked for clarity. Argento Surfer (talk) 14:53, 20 May 2016 (UTC)
I don't think a hard and fast rule that applies in all situations is the best way to do it. If you're discussing The Adventures of Talky the Duck in the context of it being a feature in Comics Monthly, then it would be appropriate to italicise Comics Monthly and put "The Adventures of Talky the Duck" in quotes, but if you're talking about The Adventures of Talky the Duck as a series and Talky Learns to Talk as an instalment of the series, then italicise The Adventures of Talky the Duck and put "Talky Learns to Talk" in quotes. The idea, it seems to me, is to indicate that these are two different "levels" of publication - the higher level is italicised, the lower level is in quotes. Obviously there are going to be contexts where you're using all three levels, which is where the problems come in. But there is the option of referring to Talky the Duck as a character, neither italicised nor in quotes, and that might be a way of resolving the problem while retaining the distinction between levels: Talky the Duck first appeared in the story "Talky Learns to Talk" in Comics Monthly #238. But be flexible, and think about what it is you're intending to convey when you use italics or quotes. My thoughts, anyway. --Nicknack009 (talk) 15:05, 20 May 2016 (UTC)
It's been over a week with no new comments, so in order to kickstart the discussion let me offer a suggestion: British and continental European punctuation is different from American punctuation, and Japan uses a different writing system entirely. What would my fellow editors say to acknowledging these distinctions and making this RfC solely about American comic books and not British comics, Franco-Belgian comics or manga? --Tenebrae (talk) 00:35, 30 May 2016 (UTC)
I don't see the value in that—sounds like instruction creep to me. Why would we want to make things so complicated? What do we gain from distinguishing Little Orphan Annie from Little Annie Fanny? Why would we want to distinguish where it was published?—whether newspaper vs magazine, US vs Japan, XXX vs YYY. We should stick strictly to what it is, which is immutable, rather than where it appears, which always changes and is irrevelant from a typographical perspective. Do we speak of "From Hell" appearing in Taboo until it became From Hell appearing as its own series? What advantage is there to that? It's the same From Hell—nothing has changed other than whether it appears with other material or not—which is utterly irrelevant. Compare to something non-comics: "Foundation was originally a series of eight short stories published in Astounding Magazine between May 1942 and January 1950." Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 00:48, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
Disagree. "Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD" (in Strange Tales) is factually, literally, not Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD the comic-book series.--Tenebrae (talk) 01:30, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
Also, I don't think there's anything wrong with attempts to compromise or reach a middle ground. Label it derisively all you want, but it's a fact that British punctuation and American punctuation are different. I see no reason for American punctuation to be forced onto British topics, and vice versa. --Tenebrae (talk) 01:40, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
"Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD" (in Strange Tales) is factually, literally, not Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD the comic-book series—did anyone say it was?
Label it derisively all you want—I don't know what this is in response to, Tenebrae. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 02:05, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
Hi, Curly. Well, maybe we're on our way to finding a middle ground, if we're really agreeing that this punctuation differentiates between "Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD" the feature and Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD the series. But more importantly, to address your second point, I see where I erred. Read on:
The label I was referring to was "instruction creep." Y'know, you and I have worked together many years and I genuinely, very much so, respect your work. In fact, I'm proud to be part of a group that includes the longtime WPC editors in this discussion. I made my suggestion because I thought, "Well, he's right — punctuation isn't the same where he comes from," i.e., the UK, and I was (inadvertently, not immediately remembering that fact) pushing something that really only applies to American punctuation. For that, I apologize — I should have considered WP:WORLDVIEW. So, yes, if other editors agree, I'd like to own up to that and reframe this RfC as applying to American comic books only. --Tenebrae (talk) 17:42, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
I'm Canadian, and most Canadians follow American punctuation—not that that's relevant, as WP has its own punctuation standards (MOS:PUNCT), which is not subject to WP:ENGVAR. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 23:08, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
Well, I apologize for misinterpreting your British spellings as meaning you're British. And I'm very disappointed to see you disregard my larger point about trying to be cognizant of cultural differences that seem to be impacting this discussion. Now back to Mtminchi08 below. --Tenebrae (talk) 01:07, 1 June 2016 (UTC)
Are you saying there are differences in the ways the British italicize titles? You'll have to demonstrate that. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 02:03, 1 June 2016 (UTC)
I'm saying punctuation is different — single quote-marks where Americans use double quote-marks, and no placing a period after "Mr.", for example. My point is I was trying to be respectful that British English and American English aren't the same and to acknowledge worldview. I'm sorry you seem to be denigrating my effort.--Tenebrae (talk) 02:36, 1 June 2016 (UTC)
I'm not sure you understand what "denigrating" means. You certainly missed the point: (a) Wikipedia has its own punctuation conventions that are neither American nor British. (b) You've failed to demonstrate that British and American rules for italicizing titles are different, but talk as if it were a fact. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:25, 1 June 2016 (UTC)

As stated by several others above, I believe that features should be in quotation marks and titles of series or standalone works (one-shots, graphic novels, trade collections, etc.) should be in italics. For Example:

  • The Hulk was the star of "The Incredible Hulk" feature in Tales to Astonish until issue #101. As of #102, the series was retitled The Incredible Hulk.
  • "Tales of Asgard" was a backup feature in Thor in the 1960s. Two different Tales of Asgard one-shots were published, the first in 1968 and the second in 1984.
  • "Generation Zero" was a serial in Epic Illustrated in 1984-1985. A Generation Zero trade paperback was published by DC in 1991. Mtminchi08 (talk) 00:31, 31 May 2016 (UTC)

Concur with Mtminchi08 as well as with Favre1fan93, Nat Gertler, and Argento Surfer.
"Little Annie Fanny" is not a comic strip by any means — it's not a strip of three of four panels, or slightly longer on a Sunday newspaper page. No one would ever call "Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD" in Strange Tales a comic strip. Multipage comic-book features are not comic strips. --Tenebrae (talk) 01:30, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
Tenebrae, "strip" is exactly the word used to describe shorter multipage comics works, such as Crumb's ("The most infamous was a six-page Crumb strip, 'Joe Blow' ...," etc). This isn't new, and I know you're not ignorant of the fact. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 02:09, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
That's an outlier example very much in the minority. I would say we both know that Peanuts is a comic strip, and no knowledgable person would ever call "Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD" a comic strip. In any event, I've offered some thoughts above.--Tenebrae (talk) 17:46, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
It's no outlier, Tenebrae:
Should I keep going? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 23:35, 31 May 2016 (UTC)
And I could go online and find even more things that don't conflate Peanuts with a 10-page "Iron Man" or "Captain America" story in Tales of Suspense. But I'm not that obsessive. [NOTE ADDED Sunday, June 5: Looking through this thread, I can see I'm going to have to be a little obsessive and list some examples. They are toward the bottom of this RfC.]
Virtually every other editor here who has expressed an opinion one way or the other disagrees with you. Are you saying every single one of us is unequivocally wrong and only you yourself plus one other guy are unequivocally right? Seriously?
I've tried to reach out, compromise, reach a middle ground. But you're going for a scorched-earth policy even though the bulk of the other editors here disagree with you for reasons they've all intelligently and in good faith laid out. --Tenebrae (talk) 01:02, 1 June 2016 (UTC)
Tenebrae, I've refuted your every point with facts, not opinion. Please don't ignore that. You're demanding MOS:COMICS be changed to something neither the real world nor the rest of WP conforms to. The onus is on you to demonstrate the validity of this change.
"And I could go online and find even more things that don't conflate Peanuts with a 10-page "Iron Man" or "Captain America" story in Tales of Suspense."—this is conflating nothing. This is well-established usage. Do I seriously need to load this page up with more evidence? How many links will satisfy you? Fifty? A hundred? I can do it easily enough: I mean, check ou the results for "annie fanny" strip alone. You can't seriously continue denying this is standard usage. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 02:12, 1 June 2016 (UTC)
NOTE ADDED Sunday, June 5: Looking through this thread, I can see I'm going to have to be a little obsessive and list some examples to show there is no single "standard usage", and one should not be suggesting there is. We're seeking the best, most logical usage. The examples are toward the bottom of this RfC. --Tenebrae (talk) 01:58, 6 June 2016 (UTC)
And incidentally, Nat Gertler above at 16:33, 17 May 2016 gave a brief list of publications' choices of quote marks vs. italics. The New York Times uses quote marks and that is as standard and mainstream as one can get. --Tenebrae (talk) 19:05, 1 June 2016 (UTC)
Tenebrae: I've already responded to this—NYT also quotemarks "A Contract with God". It's hard to discuss things with someone who ignores everything you say. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:22, 1 June 2016 (UTC)
Just because you want to take hours to obsess about this and wikilawyer with cherrypicked facts doesn't mean the rest of us have to throw common sense out the window. "Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD" in Strange Tales is not a comic strip. And the fact remains that the bulk of the editors in this discussion — who have been here for years and know WIkipedia guidelines and MOS perfectly well -- disagree with you. Is every one of us a stupid idiot except for you? No. There's been a reasoned difference of opinion and yours is not where consensus is leaning. Please show some respect for most of the rest of the editors here. --Tenebrae (talk) 02:31, 1 June 2016 (UTC)

Curly Turkey, obviously no amount of reliable sources will convince Tenebrae. I think both parties can agree this RfC never became a worthwhile discussion but instead devolved into an endless argument between only two people. It never gathered any support for their position, so I don't see a problem ending this discussion, as there is no consensus to implement their wishes. —Prhartcom 13:32, 1 June 2016 (UTC)

Wow. Just ... wow. What you are saying is completely untrue. I'm floored that someone who disagrees with the consensus of the vast bulk of the editors who expressed a preferece would claim that there is no consensus. You're showing incredible disrespect to me and other longtime, well-versed WPC editors: Mtminchi08, Favre1fan93, Nat Gertler, and Argento Surfer. It's not like we're voting; instead, These five editors all gave detailed reasons why quote marks are absolutely appropriate. That is the definition of consensus, which does not mean unanimous. For goodness' sake. --Tenebrae (talk) 18:33, 1 June 2016 (UTC)
Nat Gertler stated he's on the fence. But don't let the facts get in the way of your fantasies. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 02:25, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
Once more, you let "your fantasies get in the way of the facts", to use your phrasing: Nat never says he's "on the fence". At 21:35, 11 May 2016, Nat says:

Agreed that "features" should be listed to the list of things quoted. "The "Let's Eat Some Lobster" installment of Goodwin and Simonson's "Manhunter" backup feature in Detective Comics is consider the apex of comics homeopathy."

And he reinforces this with post 20:28, 13 June 2016 post below. You know, your having made what seem like deliberate misstatements, combined with the occasinal personal attack ("But don't let the facts get in the way of your fantasies.") is very disheartening to someone who respected you and offered two different compromises, which you rejected. I am being factual — and so are all the seven or eight other editors in consensus on the opposite side of your stance.--Tenebrae (talk) 21:21, 16 June 2016 (UTC)
Because "I am not in an adamant mood" is a code for "I adamantly support Tenebrae's proposal", right? Whic only further demonstrates your utter contempt for evidence and policy—they contradict you entirely, so you hope to pull the shades over the closer with this count of hands, which you already know is against policy. You might want to be careful whom you accuse of "deliberate misstatements", Tenebrae, when you keep repeating the same statements that have been thoroughly proven to be false: e.g. the way you keep bringing up the NYT, and that multipage comics are never called "strips", and screw the evidence.
Not that evidence means anything to you, but here's how it works with features in TV shows: The Itchy & Scratchy Show in The Simpsons, Dudley Do-Right of the Mounties and the other shows-within-shows in The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show, and on and on ... the real world contradicts you again, Tenebrae. You've still failed to respond to virtually all of my evidence, as well. Why do you hate evidence and policy so much, Tenebrae? Why is it so important to you to disrupt Wikipedia with this petty crusade? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:57, 16 June 2016 (UTC)
Wow. Wow, wow, wow. So all seven or eight experienced WikiProject Comics editors who have gone against your position don't live in the "the real world"? Mtminchi08, Favre1fan93, Nat Gertler, Argento Surfer, Nightscream, Jhenderson, myself and, I believe, Darkwarriorblake are all wrong, and only you are right? Wow. You're actually claiming that evidence means nothing to any of us solely ... because an overwhelming number of editors in this RfC reject your position? Wow.
Two different compromises were offered, and you rejected each with insults. I and other editors have responded to you and given plenty of examples of comics features being in quote marks. But you refuse to listen. Why do you hate evidence and policy so much? Why is it so important to you to disrupt Wikipedia with this petty crusade, since virtually no one here agrees with you. And you reject compromise. Rejecting compromise is the definition of a "crusade." You're the one crusading. I'm the one who reached out twice with compromise suggestions. --Tenebrae (talk) 05:17, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
given plenty of examples of comics features being in quote marks—right, from the NYC, etc., and despite being shown multiple times why they do it and why that style is both rejected by the Wikipedia community and conflicts with your own proposal, you keep bringing it up. You are aware enough of WP:ICANTHEARYOU to link to it, so you can't claim ignorance.
You're going around in circles again, Tenebrae—ignoring policy and all the evidence raised. A single point (we'll go through these one by one so you can't ignore them again): please tell the world why you have so little respect for R. C. Harvey, Maurice Horn, Denis Kitchen, Groth & Thompson, and all those other established professionals—you've dodged this long enough. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 05:39, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
Again, untrue: I gave plenty of examples at 01:47, 6 June 2016, and Nat Gertler gave additional ones after that. And if you were reading my posts rather than skimming and being snarky, you'd have seen my answer to your point above. I'll say again what I said at 13:09, 4 June 2016: In common usage, the average person simply does not confuse the the 9-page Howard the Duck backup feature in Giant-Size Man-Thing #4 with the Howard the Duck comic strip that appeared in newspapers. As at least seven other editors have pointed out, and as anyone can easily see, those are two very different media and two very different things. But all seven or eight editors who disagree with you must be idiots, then. Would you stop and listen to yourself? "I refuse to compromise! I refuse to even consider the possibility that these seven or eight other editors might have a point." You act as if if were impossible — impossible — for you to be wrong. That is not how Wikipedia works. Wikipedia works through consensus and compromise. But your refuse to compromise, and you refuse to recognize very clear consensus. --Tenebrae (talk) 05:46, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
Tenebrae: You didn't answer the question. Again. And of course you never will. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 06:09, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
I answered it twice. I even gave the timestamp of the other time. You don't want to hear it, and you can't even conceive that the seven or eight editors who respectfully disagree with you aren't idiots. Most reasonable people would look at the sheer number and at least ask themselves if maybe those seven or eight had a point. --Tenebrae (talk) 06:16, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
Tenebrae: Neither 01:47, 6 June 2016 nor 13:09, 4 June 2016 even address the question. Why are you doing this? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 06:38, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
  • I'm admittedly no expert in grammar or punctuation. However is it possible that neither italics or quotation marks are incorrect and it simply boils down to a stylistic preference?--TriiipleThreat (talk) 19:04, 1 June 2016 (UTC)
    • Yes, but there is something to be gained by consistency, at the very least within an article, but even within the encyclopedia. Having said that, the outside world does not alway have a consistent standard to rely on. My instinct comes down to italics being used for a publication and quotes being used for an item of content, and that includes a serial across many publications, but that we also need not reflect the origin but how it is most commonly viewed. (I.E, we can italicize From Hell, even though it was originally serialized, because it's more frequently seen as the completed whole.) But then there are also a lot of fine line calls in nomenclature; among the comicsing crowd, I can recall "Little Annie Fanny" being referred to as a comic or as a strip but never a "comic strip". If you say "I do comic strips", you do newspaper work or something very much in that format; "Trots & Bonnie" might qualify, but not Fanny. Certainly, we're seeing seemingly arbitrary from the Chicago manual, where prose newspaper feature is quoted but a comics feature is italics, but at least it is specified. So my own writing instinct may not be the best guide here. Yes, my answer is fuzzy, I am not in an adamant mood. --Nat Gertler (talk) 19:27, 1 June 2016 (UTC)

I agree with Tenebrae, as his description of when to use italics and quotes is not only consistent with MOS, but dovetails with how I'm constantly copyediting comics-related articles that incorrectly format names of comics series, storylines, etc.

As for consensus, I think this is a valid consensus. Even if it is considered stylistic, there should be consistency in formatting, shouldn't there?

And on a related note (though we can start a new discussion if you think it necessary), can someone tell me who keeps referring to storylines as "events"? I'm constantly fixing this bit of wording. In the first place, it's unclear whether it refers to an in-universe event in the story, or an out-universe event, as the word "event" sounds like it may be an external references (i.e., the way a crossover is an "event" for the publisher). For another, it could be seen as promotional-type wording. Another problem I see is when editors refer to storylines as "crossovers", without the word "storyline", which is just mind-boggling. Such material should be written with utmost clarity, particularly with the assumption that the article will be read by the uninitiated, and not the comics-savvy aficionado. Such a casual reader will not know what is meant by "event" or "crossover". Can we put it in the MOS somewhere to abandon such vague wording? Nightscream (talk) 19:30, 1 June 2016 (UTC)

@Nightscream: Its industry jargon, but I agree the terminology could be lost on anyone not familiar with it. We should use more explanatory language for our readers. Also you may wish to check out Publication history of DC Comics crossover events and Publication history of Marvel Comics crossover events.--TriiipleThreat (talk) 19:46, 1 June 2016 (UTC)
Italics for titles and quotations for content. I use a similar setup for Video Games and their "Downloadable Content", and I think it is a style that works best. Darkwarriorblake / SEXY ACTION TALK PAGE! 20:16, 1 June 2016 (UTC)
Darkwarriorblake: So how would you handle both Little Orphan Annie and Little Annie Fanny? It's not clear from your comment. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:08, 1 June 2016 (UTC)
  • I agree with Tenebrae originally when I read his initial comment on this thread although Curley Turkey did bring up fairly decent examples of something (that even led to debate over what a comic book strip is) that could lead it to debatable on certain topics that I am uncertain of yet. Still I am familiar with Tenebrae's way as the correct way to do it for most examples. Not just in comic books. Television series/ episodes etc. Jhenderson 777 23:53, 1 June 2016 (UTC)
    • Television series/ episodes etc.—it works exactly the same with TV and comics: series such as The Amazing Spider-Man, Little Orphan Annie, and Little Annie Fannie are italicized, while individual episodes are quotemarked, such as "Superduperman", "A Death in the Family", and "Master Race". Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:13, 2 June 2016 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I believe the above is a smokescreen to draw attention away from the fact Jhenderson777 agrees that features should be in quote marks. (" I am familiar with Tenebrae's way as the correct way to do it for most examples.") TV clearly does not have "features" the way anthology comic books do, so the distinction is: overall, italicize; specific, quote mark.

At least seven veteran, years-long editors, who know Wikipedia MOS and know comics, agree that features should be in quote marks, as opposed to two who do not, one of whom has outright rejected offers of a compromise. After more than three weeks into a month-long RfC, I think any reasonable observer would say consensus strongly leans toward quote marks.--Tenebrae (talk) 20:36, 2 June 2016 (UTC)

The "smokescreen" is in the user who steadfastly ignored all of the factual points that have been raised to push a personal preference that has no basic in real-world or wider WP standards. WP:CONSENSUS (which is policy) explicitly states "Decision-making involves an effort to incorporate all editors' legitimate concerns" (which you refuse to address) and "consensus is determined by the quality of arguments (not by a simple counted majority)"—again, we've seen no arguments from you beyond simple WP:ILIKEIT. Per WP:Local consensus (also policy): "Consensus among a limited group of editors, at one place and time, cannot override community consensus on a wider scale."—this has been a serious problem with WP:COMICS, and a number of local consensuses here have been overturned. If you can't be bothered to engage with the discussion—instead resorting to ad hominems as you have—then you shouldn't be surprised if the closer closes by maintaining the WP-wide status quo. If this is not the result you'd prefer, then your only option is to start engaging with the actual arguments raised. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 23:03, 2 June 2016 (UTC)
I would like to think your statements are simply in error and not deliberate falsehoods. Nat Gertler, as I mentioned before, gave plenty of publication examples of features given in quote marks, so this is not a personal preference and it is deliberately misleading to say so.
Second, no one is "voting" but each have given quality arguments. Just because you disagree with the arguments of at least seven longtime, veteran editors who know Wikipedia policy and style perfectly well does not mean only you have quality arguments, and that all these other seven veteran editors are misguided dupes.
Third, exactly what MOS or WP-wide status quo do you mean? There is nothing about the punctuation treatment of comic-book features published within an anthology. To falsely suggest that there is — when the entire purpose of this RfC is to establish one in the first place — is, again, deliberately misleading.
And saying there has been no "effort to incorporate all editors' legitimate concerns" is, and I'll say it, an outright lie. I have offered two compromises to address your concerns, one here and one on your talk page, and you rejected both in favor of your "my way or nothing" approach. --Tenebrae (talk) 14:33, 3 June 2016 (UTC)
Nat Gertler, as I mentioned before, gave plenty of publication example—and here's what I mean, Tenebrae: I've already shown that most of the examples that use quotes also use quotes for publications. Not only that, but I've pointed that out to you twice. Here is the third time you've ignored that. Please tell everyone why you're ignoring this, Tenebrae—it's horribly disrespectful, especially when you're insinuating I'm spreading "deliberate falsehoods". Then you can exlplain to eveyone why you have ignored virtually every other point I've raised—but let's deal with this one first. Please don't dodge it again. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 19:32, 3 June 2016 (UTC)
Oh, for goodness' sake. First, even assuming "most" in Nat's sample is correct, you're now acknowledging that some mainstream publications do differentiate between a comic-book series and an internal comic-book feature by italicizing the magazine name and using quote marks for the feature.
Second, Nat did a quick survey to show proof of concept, and he did not cherrypick but was honest enough to show results on both sides of the issue. Conversely, you only looked for what you wanted to find. (I went through a couple of your own examples and they did not even support your point; for example, "Another classic parody of a beautifully rendered comic strip is "Prince Violent!," Kurtzman/Wood's stab at Prince Valiant" is talking about Prince Valiant being a comic strip and not saying the multi-page parody is. And if I wanted to be obsessive and spend an hour adding to Nat's work, I could point out that more than 50 years ago, it was routine to refer to individual features within a comic book as "features" and not "comic strips": the cover of Tales of Suspense #59 refers to "Captain America" and "Iron Man" as features.)
In common usage, the average person simply does not confuse the the 9-page Howard the Duck backup feature in Giant-Size Man-Thing #4 with the Howard the Duck comic strip that appeared in newspapers. As at least seven other editors have pointed out, and as anyone can easily see, those are two very different media and two very different things.
I'd also note you didn't respond to my 14:33, 3 June 2016 requests for information to back up some of your specific claims. And that bring up a point you have not responded to except in the most sour-grapes way: Seven longtime, veteran Wikipedia editors who are well-familiar with policy and MOS, and gave specific and in some cases very detailed reasons, all disagree with your view. It's fine — reasonable people can disagree. But it is not reasonable to say, "I refuse to compromise! All seven of you are wrong, only I am right, and if the closing admin is smart, he'll see this!" That's not really the way RfCs work, and I think it would be proper to acknowledge where, by far, the consensus is leaning. --Tenebrae (talk) 13:09, 4 June 2016 (UTC)
Thank you, TT. I would disagree, however, that it's industry jargon. The word "event" is not used as a synonym for "event", even in the industry press. And "crossover" is a modifier. While I have no problem with "crossover storyline", I am frustrated when some editors, in deciding to use only one of those words, actually use the first one instead of the second one. Nightscream (talk) 00:33, 2 June 2016 (UTC)
Nightscream: I think you meant to reply to someone further up. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:13, 2 June 2016 (UTC)
I was responding to Triiiple Threat's 19:46, 1 June 2016 post.
Also, can we stop using asterisks to indent posts? Asterisks are to itemize individual short-form things in a list. Using them for mere indentation (which is what the colon is for) makes the thread look more cluttered than it has to be. Nightscream (talk) 21:42, 2 June 2016 (UTC)

You know, I had a little free time on Sunday night, and without getting crazy about it and searching for more than a short amount of time, I found numerous examples in reliable-source publications of features in quote marks and comic-book series in italics or, in one case, all caps. Here are quoted passages from:

1) The Collected Jack Kirby Collector, Volume 3 (TwoMorrows Publishing, 2004, ISBN 978-1893905023. p. 131)

The backup feature called "Tales of The Inhumans" (Thor #146-152)…

2) Stan Lee’s ‘Silver Surfer': His Most Daring Comic of the Silver Age at, by John R. Parker, February 23, 2011

The Silver Surfer … with "Tales of the Watcher" as the backup ….

3) How “Tales of Asgard” Changed Everything, Sequart Organization, by Julian Darius, 4 November 2013

And then we get to Journey into Mystery #97 (Oct 1963). … And then comes the back-up: the very first "Tales of Asgard" story.

4) Modern Masters Volume 1: Alan Davis by Eric Nolen-Weathington and Alan Davis (TwoMorrows Publishing, 2007, ISBN 978-1893905191, p. 102)

…the first ten pages of "Killraven'" in his first appearance in Amazing Adventures #18. … My first thought was to maybe do a sort of "Killraven: Year One'"… [Note: When they're discussing Alan Davis' Killraven series, the comic-book series name Killraven is italicized.]

5) Marvel Bullpen Bulletins in comics cover-dated May 1970, as noted at official blog of Bronze Age comics legend Tony Isabella in his piece "RAWHIDE KID WEDNESDAY - WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 3, 2014", reprinting portions of the Bulletin including:

Best Regular Short Feature - "Tales of the Inhumans", by Stan Lee & Jack Kirby, in The Mighty Thor (Marvel)

6) Path of the Black Panther: A Retrospective Pt. 2, Jim Beard interviewing Don McGregor,, Jun 4, 2014

"Terry backed me on 'Panther’s Quest' [in MARVEL COMICS PRESENTS, as the site writes it] every step of the way."

McGregor’s time with the Black Panther didn't end with "Panther's Quest." The writer returned once more to helm the 1991 BLACK PANTHER: PANTHER’S PREY four-issue limited series….

7) Heritage Comics and Comic Art Signature Auction #823 catalog (Heritage Auctions, Inc., Jan 1, 2007, ISBN 978-1599671048)

…this splash notes that the "Tales of Asgard" feature….

8) Obituaries in the Performing Arts, 2015, by Harris M Lentz III (McFarland, 2016, ISBN 978-0786476671, p. 352: Herb Trimpe obit) [Note: Does not quote the names of features but also do not italicize them]

…Ka-Zar in Astonishing Tales … Ant-Man for Marvel Feature, Killraven for Amazing Adventures

9) Comics through Time : A History of Icons, Idols, and Ideas [4 volume set] by M. Keith Booker, editor (Greenwood, 2014, ISBN 978-0313397509, p. 666)

Though published in Marvel's Amazing Adventures title, the series' covers would read either "War of the Worlds" or "Killraven, Warrior of the Worlds" …

--Tenebrae (talk) 01:47, 6 June 2016 (UTC)

Example 9 is a extremely poor example, as it is not quotemarking a series name but quotemarking words as words—presenting the words as they appear on the cover.
And as you are aware, I've already provided not only example after example of ongoing series being presented in italics, but actual style guide recommendations (Chicago—NYT and APA have already been shown to be incompatible with WP practice), as well as the fact that that's how it's done outside of comics (pulp fiction, etc). To overturn the standards as they are, you have to demonstrate that quotemarking series is a standard. You still have not addressed why Little Orphan Annie and From Hell would be italicized but Little Annie Fanny quotemarked. And what about Hey Look!? A one-pager that appeared in several different comic books. Would that be italicized or quotemarked?
Seriously, instead of causing headaches with all these complicated rules you're proposing, why don't we just stick with established practice? I seriously can't see a single advantage to gumming up the works with a rule that requires dozens of exceptions based on "gut feelings". "Italicize series titles" is the only rule we need, and it's the one we've already got. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 02:59, 6 June 2016 (UTC)
Really, I am extremely concerned that someone I respected would resort to deliberate misstatement. Read the compromise proposals I suggested: They were not based on "gut feelings" but on objective criteria. And I've certainly responded that "Little Annie Fanny" is a multi-page comic-book story, not a comic strip. But you've become so obsessed with defying seven other longtime editors simply to get your own way that you've resorted to flat-out misrepresentation. Please: Take a step back and look at how you're behaving.
As for "standards" ... haven't you looked through WikiProject Comics? There are a couple hundred articles or more that already put features in quote marks. It's already the de facto standard. I would ask that you not go around changing the status quo of those articles while this RfC is ongoing. --Tenebrae (talk) 12:46, 6 June 2016 (UTC)
There are a couple hundred articles or more that already put features in quote marks. It's already the de facto standard.—and any number more that follow the wider Wikipedia standard, as you are well aware (Little Annie Fannie, Mr. Mystic, Nelvana of the Northern Lights, and on and on and on).
"Little Annie Fanny" is a multi-page comic-book story, not a comic strip—you harp on about how I've "defied seven other longtime editors", but you don't seem to be in the least concerned that "comic strip" is exactly what longtime professionals have called it for generations. You can't continue to assert that multi-page stories aren't called comic strips—that bizarre assertion has been absolutely and thoroughly debunked. But Maurice Horn, R. C. Harvey, Denis Kitchen, et al. don't know jack about comics, do they?
The one who's "obsessed" is you. Facts appear to mean nothing to you—you keep repeating the same assertions that have been shown to be ridiculously false. This is unproductive, disruptive, and annoying. Please take a step back and look at how you're behaving. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 02:01, 13 June 2016 (UTC)
So "facts mean nothing to" me, Mtminchi08, Favre1fan93, Nat Gertler, Argento Surfer, Nightscream, Jhenderson, and, I believe, Darkwarriorblake?
Many examples have been given of different accepted styles of punctuating comic-book features in print ... and the consensus is not for the style you personally prefer. And incidentally, in any form of common usage, no one conflates a multi-page feature in a comic-book with a Peanuts or Blondie comic strip. Saying that only you have The One True Way and that at least seven other editors who disagree with you are all misguided and wrong ... well, who's the one who sounds obsessed? --Tenebrae (talk) 19:28, 13 June 2016 (UTC)

Just a quick note on comparisons to TV: while some have said that TV doesn't have features the way that a comic book does, it actually does. That's why we can have:

That’s because “Stephen Colbert Gets All Up In Your Faith” is the direct descendant of Colbert’s “This Week in God,” a popular segment he did as a correspondent for Jon Stewart‘s The Daily Show on Comedy Central.



“Weekend Update,” still hosted by Colin Jost and Michael Che, has settled into utter mediocrity after its horrendous start.

(The Atlantic)


This process accelerated in 1998, when Elmo began hogging an entire quarter of Sesame Street’s hour running time, first with the regular “Elmo’s World” segment, then with the new “Elmo: The Musical.”

(Vanity Fair)

--Nat Gertler (talk) 20:28, 13 June 2016 (UTC)

  • Nat Gertler: Yes, it's easy to find examples of both styles, and other sources simply capitalize the segments—and you'll notice that Weekend Update is italicized on Wikipedia. The standard at Wikipedia is to italicize, as can be seen with the shows-within-a-show in The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show. Tenebrae wants to make an exception exclusively for American comic books—did you not notice how he had no objection to features in Japanese and European comics magazines remaining (per Wikipedia-wide standard) in italics? And everyone still ignores the case of newspaper comic strips, as well as The Spirit. Why the exception for only a sub-selection of American comics? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 05:51, 17 June 2016 (UTC)


So where do we stand?

  • Context: this all blew up when Tenebrae changed the formatting of Little Annie Fanny from the italics it has had since it was created in 2005 to quotemarks.
  • We can't claim there's a real-world working standard of using quotemarks for ongoing series—we've seen the evidence that there is no such standard. In the real world, there's a mess of quotemarks, italics, ALLCAPS, and simple capitalization.
  • We can't claim quotemarking series is a WP standard, as we've seen that they're absolutely not a standard outside of American comics—and even within American comics, they're not, as nobody here would propose using quotemarks for The Spirit.
  • We've also established is that there is a standard at Wikipedia—one that applies to pulp fiction, manga, Euro-comics, shows-within-shows, etc. The established standard is to use italics, and nobody here has proposed to override that standard anywhere but in a sub-selection of American comics.
  • Wikipedia style follows closely the standards found in appropriate style guides, such as Chicago; Wikipedia does not rely on AP or other news-related style guides, as Wikipedia is WP:NOTNEWS.
  • The policy WP:CONSENSUS explicitly disallows vote-counting to determine consensus.

I presented a list of examples of ongoing strip features in italics, but Tenebrae appears to be presenting it as if I were arguing that only italics are used in the real world—obviously I've argued no such thing, but that would explain why he presented his counterexample links (which are otherwise entirely nonsensical). My examples served no more purpose than to dispell the assertion that quotemarks is the way it's always done—that's now inarguable. Let's just pretend this was a Good Faith misunderstanding and let Tenebrae back down on it.

So what concrete arguments do we have that series in American comic books and magazines—with certain exceptions like The Spirit—should be quotemarked rather than follow the Wikipedia-wide standard of italicizing? Absent such concrete arguments, the closer will have no choice but to close by maintaining the status quo, as per policy, regardless of how many hands are raised to the contrary. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 08:22, 17 June 2016 (UTC)

An apt summary. Closure can be requested at Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Requests for closure, but if I were the closer I would avoid this one. I know which side has presented the much better arguments here, though. And all over a couple of extra tick marks. Please try to refrain from continuing this discussion; I'm sure you both have better things to do. Status quo for now, guys. —Prhartcom 13:38, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
We've also established is that there is a standard at Wikipedia—one that applies to pulp fiction, manga, Euro-comics, shows-within-shows, no, I don't think we've established that. You've given examples, but while you point out that Weekend Update is italicized in its own article, one can counterpoint that it is quoted throughout the SNL article, and we can head over to, say the 60 Minutes article and see it flip=flop between the two for "Point/Counterpoint". I haven't seen "appropriate style guides, such as Chicago" cited, merely one style guide, Chicago itself, and Wikipedia is clearly not beholden to Chicago (otherwise, we could spare all the effort of building our own MOS.) I think both sides could here could apply a bit of cooling to their adamancy. --Nat Gertler (talk) 13:45, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
I don't think I've ever seen as blatant an attempt to smokescreen from the clear consensus as I see here. The overwhelming number of editors say that comic-book features should be in quote marks. And the response is, "Oh, well, that doesn't count, since this isn't a vote." By that argument, anybody on the losing side of any consensus discussion can say, "Oh, well, it doesn't matter that four times as many editors want something — because that's voting!" No. Voting is a simple yes or no. Each one of these seven or eight experienced, veteran WikiProject:Comics editors have given rationales, in some cases quite lengthy ones. No "policy" is being violated whatsoever.
"In the real world, there's a mess of quotemarks, italics, ALLCAPS, and simple capitalization." Exactly. Anything goes. So this has always been about simple consistency for WikiProject:Comics Manual of Style. Period. And the vast majority of editors here have chosen quotemarks for comic-book features.
"Nobody here would propose using quotemarks for The Spirit." The Spirit is a comic book. It is unique in the history of the medium in that it was a 16-page comic book published as a newspaper insert. And the titles of comic books are italicized: The Adventures of Superman, etc.
"We've also established is that there is a standard at Wikipedia": No, we haven't ... as a multitude of the editors here agree. Indeed, that's what this entire RfC is about: Establishing a style for comic-book features, which the MOS currently does not address. Read the actual wording of this RfC.
As Nat Gertler points out, "Wikipedia is clearly not beholden to Chicago (otherwise, we could spare all the effort of building our own MOS.)"
And I'm sorry, but for the two sole holdouts to echo-chamber each other as say, "Yep. All seven or eight other experienced editors are wrong and let's twist logic around to say up is down, right is wrong and two holdouts trump the arguments of all those others because we disagree with them" is just as inappropriate as can be.
The 10-page comic-book feature "Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD", published in the comic-book Strange Tales, is not the same as the independent, solo comic book Nick Fury, Agent o SHIELD.
And finally, here's the thing: Even though I could see the majority of my fellow editors favored quotemarks, I still offered two compromises. One is that this MOS apply to American comic books only; the other is that it apply solely to comic books and comics magazines and not to other media, such as prose magazines that may happen to have a comics feature in it, i.e. Little Annie Fanny in Playboy. But a fanatical, my-way-or-the-highway, I'm-right-and-everyone-else-is-wrong editor insulted me for eve broaching the idea of a compromise. What do you think a closing admin would say to that utter refusal to compromise? --Tenebrae (talk) 20:08, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
The overwhelming number of editors say ... Voting is a simple yes or no—you've done it again, Tenebrae. Why do you have such contempt for policy?
The Spirit is a comic book—no, The Spirit was one of several features in an untitled 16-page newspaper insert. This fact is not in the least obscure—Eisner is one of the best known names in comics, and The Spirit is his most widely read work.
that's what this entire RfC is about: Establishing a style for comic-book features—as long as they're American, and exclude every other nationality. No, that's a violation of WP:LOCALCONSENSUS.
The 10-page comic-book feature "Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD", published in the comic-book Strange Tales, is not the same as the independent, solo comic book Nick Fury, Agent o SHIELD. —which is exactly like saying: "The 20-page comic-book feature "Ranma ½", published in the comic-book Weekly Shōnen Sunday, is not the same as the independent, solo comic book Ranma ½ published by Viz Media. Except for the fact that they contain the same content." But we're talking American comic books, which get special treatment, right? No, we don't do that at Wikipedia. Unless you're going to bring another such RfC to WP:MANGA and everywhere else, why should we take this LOCALCONSENSUS-violating RfC seriously?
And there we are again—arguing that American comic books require special treatment, because ... well, just because. All in favour, raise your hand! Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 20:52, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
Japanese manga has got nothing to do with other kinds of comics. They're issued as 300-page books. They don't even read in the same direction. You're obfuscating. And only a fanatic tries to makes reasonable compromise sound like a terrible thing. I was suggesting a compromise even though the overwhelming majority of editors in this discussion have a consensus you don't agree with. Because I believe in compromise and want everyone to be represented as best they can. Yet just because you, personally, favor a different style than all the rest of the editors, you're throwing out a million straw-man arguments. As for "status quo", WPC MOS doesn't mention comic-book features, and hundreds of articles here use quote marks for them. There is not status quo. That's the whole point of this RfC – to establish a style.
Incidentally, I saw how you added "policy" to the Projects notified of the RfC, along with, IIRC, the original media and maybe art. And it's gotten no traction there — no one from that Project has come here to comment. So your claim that something must be violating policy because you disagree with it ... well, it doesn't appear to be true. If you're so sure that all seven or eight experienced, veteran editors — who each have been here for years and know Wikipedia policy and guidelines — are all wrong and solely you are right, then it should be crystal clear to everyone and you can stop arguing, secure in the knowledge that any closing admin will recognize that immediately. --Tenebrae (talk) 21:34, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
Japanese manga has got nothing to do with other kinds of comics. They're issued as 300-page books. They don't even read in the same direction.—my God, you said that out loud! It's obviously not going to be possible to discuss things with you. I'm leaving this RfC to the show of hands, which will be overturned as WP:LOCALCONSENSUS yet again (that keeps happening in these parts). Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:39, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
That's basically what I said, that after roughly a dozen editors have weighed in over the course of more than a month, we leave it to a closing admin. I know it's not much, but I'm glad we agree on something, at least. --Tenebrae (talk) 22:53, 17 June 2016 (UTC)

Checking via Facebook[edit]

I posted this question on Facebook, and got some interesting answers:

  • Two of the editors of the Comics Buyer's Guide noted that for them, serialized stories within comics and ongoing backup features would be placed in quotes. This was supported by others who wrote about comics.
  • For some of what we've been discussing, there exist a MOS standard at Wikipedia:Manual_of_Style/Titles#Series_titles that actually complicated matters: "Descriptive titles for media franchises and fictional universes (including trilogies and other series of novels or films) should not be placed in italics or quotation marks, even when based on a character or feature of the works (Tolkien's Middle-earth writings, the Marvel and DC universes in comics, Sherlock Holmes mysteries)." Some backup features have a definite title: "Tales of the Watcher", for example. But others don't really, or at least not consistently. If there's a regularly backup featuring Sidekick Lass, it won't always display Sidekick Lass as a title, although it might says Sidekick Lass in "The Obvious Brownie Adventure". In this case, calling it a Sidekick Lass backup series would be descriptive, and thus neither quotes nor italics would be used. --Nat Gertler (talk) 07:22, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
Can you ask the CBG folk how they'd handle The Spirit, V for Vendetta, and Ranma ½? And Annie Fanny, since that's the one that set this off? Let's keep in mind, though, that a magazine like CBG is more likely to follow AP-like style than Chicago-like, and the Wikipedia MoS puts weight on style guides used for book sources rather than periodicals and news sources—and, indeed, book sources such as the Comics Journal Library's volume on Kurtzman and Bill Schelly's Kurtzman biography italicize Little Annie Fanny (as does Elder's biography.) Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 09:44, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
  • I wouldn't say that there is anything relevantly AP-like going on here, as both editors were clear that they title of the comic book series would be italicized (with John saying that the cover title would be italicized and Maggie corrected him that it was the title in the indicia that would be so used.) John did agree with the comments of another person (a comics creator) that once the serial is published as a "book," it would be in italics. --Nat Gertler (talk) 13:56, 19 June 2016 (UTC)
Once again, to answer questions for which Curly Turkey is doing "I can't hear you": The Spirit is a comic book — uniquely, one done as a standalone newspaper insert — and as for Ranma ½, I've already said Japanese manga is a completely separate entity from standard comic books, using a completely different language system involving pictographs. I have no idea what the issue is with V for Vendetta, so that needs explaining. And Little Annie Fanny is a comics feature appearing in a magazine, so like "Pussycat" it would be in quotemarks while, as Nat Gertler noted, the collected edition published as a comic book is The Adventures of Pussycat.
Isolated, and I feel nitpicky, examples aside — there are always going to be unique exception-to-the-rules examples no matter what field or discipline is involved — the fact remains that the overwhelming majority of veteran WikiProject Comics editors, each giving detailed reasons, believes comic-book features are properly rendered in quote marks, while comic-book magazines themselves are in italics. --Tenebrae (talk) 16:11, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
As you are well aware, The Spirit was a feature in an untitled newspaper insert. You've been told already, so I have to wonder what's motivating this outright dishonesty. The rest of your comment is similar gibberish. Manga is not comics? Jesus Christ ... Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 20:48, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
Oh, don't you dare make false, ad hominem attacks. The insert was known colloquially as "The Spirit section" but just like Thor, which also had backup features, the title of that unique newspaper comic book was the same as that of the series. But hey, don't believe "dishonest" me — believe the Grand Comics Database, here. And Jesus Christ, indeed, anyone reading this can see very well that I never said, "Manga is not comics" — now that is a straight-up lie. My 16:11, 20 June 2016 post says, and I quote, "Japanese manga is a completely separate entity from standard comic books, using a completely different language system involving pictographs." --Tenebrae (talk) 21:50, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
The V for Vendetta situation is not that difficult. There were "V for Vendetta" installments in Warrior; those were colorized for reprinting in the DC series V for Vendetta, which followed up with new material, and the story was collected in the trade paperback V for Vendetta, which would seem to be how most people experienced it. --Nat Gertler (talk) 17:00, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
Very easy to disagree with, but whatever---I'm still waiting on the answer to the others. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 20:44, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
Everything's answered. And despite your falsehood against me, I caught you in a lie and provide timestamp and quote to prove it, in my post just above.--Tenebrae (talk) 21:50, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
And in any case, you're making the same arguments over and over again that seven or eight other editors have rejected. You're beating a dead horse. The consensus is overwhelmingly against your position and in favor of quote marks for comics features. --Tenebrae (talk) 21:56, 20 June 2016 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Post-RfC comments[edit]

I was off somewhere else during this. If it comes up again, count me in for "once the serial is published as a 'book,' it would be in italics." This answers the question of Ranma 1/2; the fact that it was published as a book as well as a feature means italics (except in a case where the serial version within another work is explicitly being referred to). A serial/feature in a book should be in quotes as a minor work within a major one (which has to do with quantity/size not quality/significance; it's not a value judgement). This is not a new question and is not specific to comics in any way, not even when it comes to episodes within features within books. Many novels are divided into "books" or sections, meta-chapters if you will, with titles, and further divided into chapters with titles. Both the big sections and the little chapters get quotes. Various progrock albums have long "epic" tracks on them (Rush's "2112", Kate Bush's "The Ninth Wave") further divided into "sub-songs" (which are tracks in the technical sense on the CDs). Both levels get quotes, the album gets italics. Frequently, magazines (italics) have major articles (quotes) that have inset sub-articles (sometimes by different authors) with their own titles (they get quotes, too). And so on. It is less potentially confusing than using italics for the "middle" level because the number of cases of just a book title and a feature vastly outnumbers the cases of all three levels being present and needing to be referred to in sequence. [The OCD dork in me would have liked to have seen a convention evolve to use single quotes for the episode-inside-feature-inside-book level, but it has not, and WP isn't going to make one up.] — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  23:37, 11 January 2017 (UTC)

SMcCandlish: So how does this apply to Little Orphan Annie and Little Annie Fanny? They're not "serials" with an end "book" in mind—they're open-ended features. Curly "JFC" Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 23:47, 11 January 2017 (UTC)
The first seems to be a strip, not a feature, and the second a feature, so both seem like quotation marks cases to me. Anyway, I'm trying to provide additional rationale backup for the RfC outcome, not second-guess. It allows for "some exceptions", and I suppose cases could be made for these two to be italicized. LOA has been republished in book form, and so has LAF. However, I suspect that both of these are mostly thought of as strips/features. I would make the opposite argument about Liberty Meadows, which is probably encountered in book form by at least 19 out of 20 people familiar with it. Style matters like this almost inevitably run into some kind of minor complication, some edge case. In the end they're an arbitrary standard to apply simply to have a standard instead of random chaos and confusion. The small price of that benefit is that once in a while the standard will not seem 100% perfect for a particular case, or one will not clearly fit into the system without differences of opinion. Kind of goes for all style issues, and is why people launching crusades about them is silly and tedious. :-) PS: I'm not implying any distinction between "serial" and "feature" in the above, and edited to make that clearer.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  00:03, 12 January 2017 (UTC)
"How they're encountered" shouldn't play any rôle in the decision—we quotemark songs regardless of whether they're originally published as part of an album, like "A Day in the Life", or as standalone sheet music like "Maple Leaf Rag". We should focus on what it is, not how it appeared—it's under the focus on the latter that "edge cases" (and thus disputes) will proliferate. Curly "JFC" Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 00:17, 12 January 2017 (UTC)

"Plot" vs "Synopsis"[edit]

The suggestions provided for section names does not specify if an article about a comic title should name the plot summary "Plot" or "Synopsis". I've seen plot more frequently, but synopsis seems to be the preferred term on higher quality articles. I have no strong opinion either way, but it seems like something that should be decided on. Any thoughts? Argento Surfer (talk) 13:53, 3 January 2017 (UTC)

  • That's one of those things that are left to editor discretion. I think I've used both over the years. I suppose "synopsis" is broader than "plot", in that it would be appropriate to a nonfiction work that didn't really have a "plot" per se. Curly "the jerk" Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 14:09, 3 January 2017 (UTC)
  • I generally equate "synopsis" first more with "premise" (ie a broad overview of the plot) where the "plot" is the more "play-by-play" aspect of the narrative. - Favre1fan93 (talk) 01:25, 4 January 2017 (UTC)
  • They're synonymous, for fiction; both are shortenings of the term "plot synopsis". WP's use of "Plot" in such headings is actually sloppy writing, but it's common enough we can get away with it. Agreed with CT's point that "synopsis" without "plot" is used when referring to nonfiction.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  23:41, 11 January 2017 (UTC)