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Citing Graphic Novels

With the introduction of Wireless, Part 1, I am feeling like we need to set some guidelines for using the graphic novels as a source. Up to now, we've generally citing the GNs in the notes section, unless it's something so big that we'll put it in the main article space (read: "Character History" or "About") with a clear note that this is info from the GN. With Hana (and related characters), there's no way to do this. I put "Wireless, Part 1" as a subheading under "Character History", which sort of breaks tradition. My question is: how should we cite graphic novels? Personally, I think the articles (with a few exceptions) that already cite the GNs in the "Notes" section should remain as they are. But I think that if an important piece of history is revealed, the graphic novel should receive its own subheading. For instance, I think Eden's article should have a subheading called ===Life Before Eden===.

Thoughts? - RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 22:32, 26 December 2006 (EST)

One thing I want to toss in. If we treat the graphic novels as canon then we may need to be careful. I suspect the comics exaggerate certain things. Like in Wireless, Part 1 I doubt Mr. Bennet actually kicked her down despite it being that way in the comic. Facts are easier to take, but actions could potentially get tricky. (Admin 23:19, 26 December 2006 (EST))
Or perhaps the disparity between a character's in an episode and in a graphic novel isn't really that important... maybe it's ok that they act differently in each medium... not sure what would be best in terms of documenting things here. (Admin 23:23, 26 December 2006 (EST))
I'd also say that the policy of clearly stating when information comes from a graphic novel serves the additional function of making things clearer for fans who don't read the comics. Rather than going "OMG I MISSED AN EPISODE", they can see right away that the info is from a comic. It's kind of awkward, true, but it's a big benefit. I'd say section headings are fine, but maybe we should make sure the section heading includes "(Graphic Novel)".--Hardvice (talk) 23:48, 26 December 2006 (EST)
I don't think the graphic novels should be treated as canon - I like the distinction of "near-canon". So far, the only cites on the site (heh) say the name of the GN, but most don't actually say "Graphic Novel". I think that's fine in the Notes. You're right, Hardvice, if a piece of info is so important that it is included in a subheading, the subheading should somehow distinguish itself by saying "Graphic Novel". I'll go ahead and change the few for Hana-related characters. - RyanGibsonSt***ewart (talk) 00:31, 27 December 2006 (EST)

Have the writers at any point in an interview etc. directly stated whether or not the graphic novels are canon? I've been under the impression that they were, so I was wondering for what reason they are not considered fully canonical here. Branfish 03:06, 18 January 2007 (EST)

The writers/producers have not said anything about the canonical status of the GNs, as far as I'm aware. They have said things like "an extension of the show" and "provide more insight", but not they're canon. I'd say that's a pretty good indication that they can be trusted, but not yet considered canon - "near canon" is a good distinction. We include their information as fact in the articles, but we simply try to note that the info is coming from a graphic novel. That way a casual viewer not familiar with the GNs won't be confused or think that they've missed an episode. - RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 07:05, 18 January 2007 (EST)
The closest they've come is the Wizard interview with Aron Coleite this week (there's a link on Aron's page). He talks quite a bit about the novels, and basically says that they're intended to supplement the show, but they are careful not to put anything too necessary to the story in the novels for viewers who don't read them. I for one think that makes our policy the best option: as long as we're clear that the information comes from a graphic novel, then we, like the novels, are supplementing the full canon material from the episodes. Readers of the Wiki who don't read the novels can tell what information comes from them and what comes from the episodes, but the information is still available.--Hardvice (talk) 09:15, 18 January 2007 (EST)


OK, guys, let's talk this through more formally...I've read several discussions that touch on 'canon' in relation to specific areas, people, etc...Let's try to nail down a consistent approach.

Was talking on the Pam Green discussion about the 'deceased' thing. It was confirmed that Pan/Pam are the same person from two writers. The Interactive Map clearly shows deceased. Our Pam page shows the postit of that. The computer shot shows Pams name (not in red like other deceased folks), but it also covers up the deceased column.

Pam seems to be a good example, but there are others as well.

Stepping away from Pam, we have some pages that show good material, albeit for non-canon (or arguably canon) sources.

What is canon?

  • Are just screen caps from the TV episodes alone?
  • Are Q&A interviews from the writers, producers, directors, etc....?
  • Can the interactive map be?
  • Can the Graphic Novels be?
  • Can the unaired pilot be?
  • Can unaired scenes be?
  • Can Primatech data be?
  • Can Hiros Blog be?

There are probably other options out there besides these. My point is, do we have a strict 'canon' law to apply everything to, or should it be a little lax, and try to ecompass all of the reasonable sources (and we can determine what they are)?

Because at this point, if we removed or qualified all non-eposodic sources with 'possibly' or '????' or whatever, we would have tons of pages, paragraphs, pictures, etc.....that aren't 'official canon'.

For my opinion, I would like to see as much 'reasonable info' reflected from this fansite as is available. I would think at least each of the things above are all reasonable, for if we stick to a very strict canon, we should be consistent and remove a whole ton of stuff from the site.

If a new Heroes fan comes to this fansite, should they be able to find info on most stuff they would expect to be valid source material(from the sources above), or only episodic-sided and verifiable proof?

Your thoughts?

--HiroDynoSlayer (talk) 16:37, 22 February 2007 (EST)

  • OK, I just re-read the stuff from this discussion after you Admin moved mine into it....but I still don't see a clear answer.

We site alot of 'non-episodic' sources (which I am seeing as not canon). We also list alot of 'near canon' GN stuff.

But what is our approach and methodology?

Could it be as simple as list things from 'Credible Sources' upwards....but, allow higher-ordered canon conflicts trump lower ordered ones if there is a conflict? At this point I'm just rambling, until some others jump in to add to the I'll stop. --HiroDynoSlayer (talk) 19:37, 22 February 2007 (EST)

  • Okay, some responses in no particular order...

    In general, we place episodic and graphic novel information in the article space, with the GN stuff clearly marked. Pretty much all other stuff goes in the notes and is clearly marked where it comes from.

    The problem with including "reasonable information" is what might be reasonable to you might not be to me. For instance, some have tried to say that the actor's episode commentaries are canon. Though they provide insight, the actors admittedly do not always know the "big picture", and may be wrong in their statements.

    As for Pam Green, she's listed on the map as being dead, but on the list she's written in white (meaning she's alive). We can't reconcile this, so we say her status is unknown.

    I agree that all reasonable info should be collected ... and placed in the Notes (if it's not canon). For instance, I've scoured Tim Sale's forum posts and Jason Badower's blog in an attempt to bring enlightenment to their Heroes contributions. They're not canon sources, but they are reasonable sources, and certainly expound on ... stuff.

    If a new Heroes fan comes to this fansite, they will find canonical source info prominently displayed in the articles, and "extra" info in the notes. Their talk pages also have a link to this help page. — RyanGibsonStewart (talk) 18:01, 22 February 2007 (EST)

  • It's best to remember that the canon/non-canon distinction a)is not just something we made up ... it's about distinguishing the body of work from other information and b) has nothing to do with what kind of material can be used as a reference, but merely how we treat it. Information from any non-canon source can be used, with the caveat about spoiler info in non-spoiler articles. It just doesn't belong in the main article space, and its source should always be noted. Graphic novels can be used anywhere, but their source should always be noted. Why? Because then all we're assuming knowledge of from our readers is Heroes as it appears on the screen. Any information that's not from an episode will say where it comes from.

    Now, of course, when the non-canon info clashes with the canon info, this leads to a situation where the main article space says one thing and a note says something different, and that's exactly the case with Pam: she's alive on the aired list (her name being in white is plenty proof of that, since all of the deceased are in red and none of the names in white are listed as deceased.) The interactive map, which can't even spell Sanjog's (or Pam's) name properly, says she's dead. The answer: the article space should act as if she's alive, and the Notes can note that she might be deceased. That's the clearest, least speculative way of doing things. That way, readers aren't expected to have seen the interactive map, and they won't be confused by reading unexplained information contrary to what they saw on screen. Since it requires an explanation, and an explanation necessarily breaks the article's perspective, it's better off in the Notes anyway.--Hardvice (talk) 01:30, 23 February 2007 (EST)


We are defining canon as anything that is broadcasted. I would state that this is just NBC's canon. There are a number of elements that either can't make the show due to time or were changed because NBC didn't wish to see it on air. I would maintain that anything that Tim Kring approves as being in the universe, not from the NBC powers that be. --Pinkkeith 14:51, 3 October 2007 (EDT)

  • If we don't see it, we can't assume that it actually happens or is true. Just because a creator stated something doesn't mean that they didn't subsequently change their mind. Information from interviews is entirely appropriate for the Notes sections of articles, but since the histories and descriptions are written from an in-world perspective, such information is just not appropriate in those sections.--Hardvice (talk) 15:14, 3 October 2007 (EDT)
    • It think that canon has to be concerned with source with rather then being able to see it or not. I would rather see the offical source to be the creator of the show over the company that broadcasts it. --Pinkkeith 15:39, 3 October 2007 (EDT)
      • We're not actually showing NBC's view of events, though. Take the Zach kerfuffle: NBC's view is that Zach is straight. Kring's is that Zach was meant to be gay. Since we restrict ourselves to what actually airs, at least in the episode histories, our perspective is that Zach's sexuality is never confirmed, but that it's strongly implied that he's gay. That's not the NBC view--it's what actually appeared on-screen and is verifiable, and in this case is closer to what Tim Kring wanted than what NBC, off screen, decided to state was true. Now, if it came down to an offscreen debate between a creator and the network, in my mind the creator's view would win every time (though in reality, since such a debate would appear only in a Notes section, we'd actually note both claims and let readers draw their own conclusions). But it doesn't come down to such a debate, because only confirmed information from episodes and graphic novels belongs in the episode histories. There are a lot of reasons for this, not the least of which is that unaired information always requires an explanation of where it comes from, who said it, what else has been said, etc. That's appropriate in Notes, but it's not appropriate in an episode history or description, because it necessarily breaks perspective.--Hardvice (talk) 16:33, 3 October 2007 (EDT)
        • First off, I would disagree that NBC said that he's straight. What I recall them saying is that he is not gay. I was just taking the leap of faith that what is broadcasted on NBC is what NBC wants. I'm also wondering if we are taking what is broadcasted as canon, why are graphic novels listed in the character's history section of his/her article? Shouldn't that also be placed under notes, or at least have a seperate location for appearances in graphic novels? I still maintain my own idea that canon is what the creater(s) of the fictional world says exists in that world. Yet, if we are going to take the approach that canon is what is shown in the television show we should stay consistant with that. --Pinkkeith 15:09, 4 October 2007 (EDT)
          • Check the help page again. Graphic novels are considered "near canon". They are treated as though they occur in the world of the episodes, but if there's a conflict between what's shown on the screen and what's shown in a novel, the episode is considered to truly represent what happened. So far, there haven't been any major conflicts (apart from some spelling issues), since the GNs are largely supplementary.--Hardvice (talk) 15:13, 4 October 2007 (EDT)
            • Okay, I see the approach we are taking in this wiki. Thanks for clearing that up. --Pinkkeith 15:16, 4 October 2007 (EDT)


Do the webisodes trump the graphic novels? --DocM 16:45, 10 July 2008 (EDT)

  • I think my opinion will be leaning that way, but until I've seen an entire webisode I'm not sure.--MiamiVolts (talk) 16:50, 10 July 2008 (EDT)
  • I say they should be on the same tier at least, maybe higher. My personal canon hierarchy goes Ep, GN, Evolutions, though there are those GNs listed in red on this page which I consider to be deuterocanon. I'll have to watch these too to see where I put them in my canon hierarchy. --SacValleyDweller (talk) 18:37, 10 July 2008 (EDT)
  • I'm wondering if we are going to consider them to be canon or near-canon sources. --Pinkkeith 16:38, 29 July 2008 (EDT)