We have 630 questions with the tag . These cover all sorts of comics.

We have questions about comic strips:

Searching for this comic on bots and humans

We also have, of course, lots of questions about mainstream comic books, which comprise the majority of these questions. For example, the most recent open question:

Who's the child and her mother that can "talk to flowers" in Ruins?

And we have questions about graphic novels.

A search of the tag with the keywords "graphic novel" brings up 24 results. A search for the keywords alone brings up 52 results, likely indicating that the majority of questions about graphic novels are not tagged as .

Some sources suggest that graphic novels are separate from comics. For example, here graphic novels are distinguished mainly by being long-form, or standalone stories. This writer takes a similar view, although they also mention aspects of the plot that might be too vague for our purposes.

On the other hand, some people see "graphic novel" as simply a pretentious way of referring to comic books of "quality," a tendency mentioned in some of the answers here.

Note the tag wiki description for , as it stands right now:

Comics is a graphic medium in which images convey a sequential narrative. The term could include 'graphic-novels'.

This seems to be more a suggestion of a synonym than anything else, but it does put forth the view that the two terms are equivalent.

My interpretation of the term "graphic novel," which I think is fairly close to the mainstream, is basically the same as the first one mentioned: a long-form or standalone graphic work. However, I think graphic novels are a subcategory of comic books, and thus any would be a example of .

I see three options:

  1. Should we create a tag and begin applying it to the relevant questions?
  2. Should we create such a tag, but make it a synonym of ?
  3. Should we not create a tag at all, because there is no need for it?
  • 3
    Unfortunately, the overwhelming majority of graphic novels are nothing of the sort. They're simply comics for adults with a fancy name so you'll feel less dumb about buying them. There are some serials that are genuinely "novels in graphic format" but they're very few and far between.
    – Valorum
    Jun 27, 2016 at 22:31
  • @Valorum - Yeah, I mention that in my question. I suspect that will be the most popular view. It's not mine, but that's why it's a question and not an answer. ;)
    – Adamant
    Jun 27, 2016 at 22:32
  • 2
    No, no more tags..... Jun 28, 2016 at 6:28
  • @AnkitSharma - Fair enough! :)
    – Adamant
    Jun 28, 2016 at 6:41

1 Answer 1



To quote arch-curmudgeon Alan Moore;

It [graphic novel] is a marketing term... that I never had any sympathy with. The term 'comic' does just as well for me... The problem is that 'graphic novel' just came to mean 'expensive comic book' and so what you'd get is people like DC Comics or Marvel Comics—because 'graphic novels' were getting some attention, they'd stick six issues of whatever worthless piece of crap they happened to be publishing lately under a glossy cover and call it The She-Hulk Graphic Novel....

Given that there's no clear definition of what comprises a graphic novel and what comprises a comic, artificially dumping a new tag onto those comics that some users consider to be graphic novels is a waste of time, effort and energy

Oh, and as with all of our previous large-scale retagging projects, my standard objections apply:

1) How does this actually help anyone (in a demonstrable way)?

2) Does this help anyone more than it mucks up the front page?

  • This is a good answer, but I'm going to hold off on accepting it until someone posts an alternate answer and I see how people vote.
    – Adamant
    Jun 28, 2016 at 20:17

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