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  1. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by ryuluddy View Post
    I agree with you. I feel as though comic manufacturers are gun-shy about making comics more availible. It seems as though they fear another, boom and bust similar to the 90's. Comics as an entertainment form have never been stronger. For starters, there has never been a time with more comic-related material than now. Comics have achieved a measure of mainstream success, with all the Hollywood adaptations. So people are interested in comic related stories.

    There is more interest in comic-related material, but comic readers, are a niche in a niche. While i think comics could have a huge mainstream success, marketed well and exposed. Sadly, comic shops are such a dying breed since comics have lost their collectability. Comic shops are the biggest source of comics (and the ocassional book store) there just isn't as much exposure for comics to be mainstream. Retailers like the Walmarts of the world would likely not see comics as generating much interest or revenue, given most comic manufacturers aversion to accepting returns.
    Good point(s). It all comes back to how serious the CB publishers/distributors are. If DC is to actually grow its business, it'll need to take some risks. This means big marketing pushes, a fair distribution/return system, and a willingness to put buyers first. And if the industry's primary distributor, Diamond, won't play ball, DC (and Marvel) need to find a better way. It's pretty much change or die at this point.

  2. #17
    Elder Member zryson's Avatar
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    im not sure anything can be done to make more people want to buy more comics. most people arent interested in buying comics. its essentially a niche market and most kids could care less about comics.

    if anything the industry itself is to blame because comics arent aimed at kids anymore - more the 20s - 30s bracket with disposable income and even among that group many prefer to buy trades than monthlies.

    the fact most are geared towards an older audience and are usually not exactly great for newbies to get into with their multi-layered plots, all goes against it, plus the costs of comics themselves.

    so i expect the market to keep getting smaller, and the fact you can download instead of buy will factor into it too

  3. #18
    Elder Member thwhtGuardian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zryson View Post
    im not sure anything can be done to make more people want to buy more comics. most people arent interested in buying comics. its essentially a niche market and most kids could care less about comics.

    if anything the industry itself is to blame because comics arent aimed at kids anymore - more the 20s - 30s bracket with disposable income and even among that group many prefer to buy trades than monthlies.

    the fact most are geared towards an older audience and are usually not exactly great for newbies to get into with their multi-layered plots, all goes against it, plus the costs of comics themselves.

    so i expect the market to keep getting smaller, and the fact you can download instead of buy will factor into it too
    I think it's kind of cyclical though, the reason comics are aimed more towards a mature audience is because kids stopped buying them so it forced them to cater to their older readers and now they can't grow their market by selling to kids because the comics aren't for kids anymore. It's a vicious circle.

  4. #19
    Ohm, Sweet, Ohm dumbstruck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zryson View Post
    im not sure anything can be done to make more people want to buy more comics. most people arent interested in buying comics. its essentially a niche market and most kids could care less about comics.

    if anything the industry itself is to blame because comics arent aimed at kids anymore - more the 20s - 30s bracket with disposable income and even among that group many prefer to buy trades than monthlies.

    the fact most are geared towards an older audience and are usually not exactly great for newbies to get into with their multi-layered plots, all goes against it, plus the costs of comics themselves.

    so i expect the market to keep getting smaller, and the fact you can download instead of buy will factor into it too
    I would actually question the idea that the stories are too complex to market to newbies. Given the business model of "writing for the trade", there are very few longterm plot points anymore, and each story is pretty self-contained within a 6 issue arc. If anything, comic book stories are more accessible now than they have been for a long time.

  5. #20
    14 Time Rita's Champion SUPERECWFAN1's Avatar
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    Personally I feel if comics are ever gonna capture that youth market you have to go where the kids are. Thats put ads on TV (The UK Fables ad shows...it can be done as linked below) to promote what your selling. Marvel is currently selling the Avengers : Earth's Mightest Heroes. With Disney owning the channel , ya call up the Disney exec and say..."Hey we wanna promote the Avengers line...and tell kids about subscription or their LCS in commercials during the show !"

    Disney in owning Marvel will be like...thats great lets roll on that.

    Fables TV Commercial
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ruCWzUWDFU


    Because your basically advertising a part of a company ya own to make money. To sell product. Disney on DVD's could package subscription info about Marvel comics and so forth.

    Time Warner who own cable stations and air DC cartoons can do the same thing to reach out.
    "Heads up-- If Havok's position in UA #5 really upset you, it's time to drown yourself hobo piss. Seriously, do it. It's the only solution." - Rick Remender

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  6. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by dumbstruck View Post
    Given the business model of "writing for the trade", there are very few longterm plot points anymore, and each story is pretty self-contained within a 6 issue arc. If anything, comic book stories are more accessible now than they have been for a long time.
    True story. The way comics are now they have way more,"logical jumping on points," for newer readers. I know a lot of comic fans who read certain arcs, then drop off the title until there is an arc that piques their interest again.

    For financial safety, retailers should test trade sales. There isn't too much worry if a trade sits on the shelf a bit, unlike brand new issues, there isn't necessarily a ticking clock of relevance with trades like individual, hottest and newest issues.

  7. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by superecwfan1 View Post
    personally i feel if comics are ever gonna capture that youth market you have to go where the kids are. Thats put ads on tv (the uk fables ad shows...it can be done as linked below) to promote what your selling. Marvel is currently selling the avengers : Earth's mightest heroes. With disney owning the channel , ya call up the disney exec and say..."hey we wanna promote the avengers line...and tell kids about subscription or their lcs in commercials during the show !"

    disney in owning marvel will be like...thats great lets roll on that.

    Fables tv commercial
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1rucwzuwdfu


    because your basically advertising a part of a company ya own to make money. To sell product. Disney on dvd's could package subscription info about marvel comics and so forth.

    Time warner who own cable stations and air dc cartoons can do the same thing to reach out.
    brilliant!

  8. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by SUPERECWFAN1 View Post
    Personally I feel if comics are ever gonna capture that youth market you have to go where the kids are. Thats put ads on TV (The UK Fables ad shows...it can be done as linked below) to promote what your selling. Marvel is currently selling the Avengers : Earth's Mightest Heroes. With Disney owning the channel , ya call up the Disney exec and say..."Hey we wanna promote the Avengers line...and tell kids about subscription or their LCS in commercials during the show !"

    Disney in owning Marvel will be like...thats great lets roll on that.

    Fables TV Commercial
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ruCWzUWDFU


    Because your basically advertising a part of a company ya own to make money. To sell product. Disney on DVD's could package subscription info about Marvel comics and so forth.

    Time Warner who own cable stations and air DC cartoons can do the same thing to reach out.
    Obviously. This is a no-brainer. Sadly, Time Warner is a far less commercially savvy company than Disney. They know how to do some things well, but tend to suck at far too many others. As a media comglomerate (which is supposed to be synergistic by nature), they fail.

    Quote Originally Posted by ryuluddy View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by dumbstruck View Post
    I would actually question the idea that the stories are too complex to market to newbies. Given the business model of "writing for the trade", there are very few longterm plot points anymore, and each story is pretty self-contained within a 6 issue arc. If anything, comic book stories are more accessible now than they have been for a long time.
    True story. The way comics are now they have way more,"logical jumping on points," for newer readers. I know a lot of comic fans who read certain arcs, then drop off the title until there is an arc that piques their interest again.

    For financial safety, retailers should test trade sales. There isn't too much worry if a trade sits on the shelf a bit, unlike brand new issues, there isn't necessarily a ticking clock of relevance with trades like individual, hottest and newest issues.
    I have to disagree, guys. You're thinking mainly in terms of people who are already accustomed to multi-issue arcs and/or TPBs. The problem with both is that they cost too much, take too long, and are tend to be inconsistent (by nature). Like you said, Ryu, guys will often just buy one arc (or less) a year. That's no way to maintainólet alone growóa business.

    The only way to grow the comics industry is by producing more one shots. It's easy to say that a multi-issue storyline is accessible, but I just don't see it. Why should I pay upwards of $18.00 for a story that might just suck? How is any story told in multiple parts (within a larger, decades old continuity) "accessible"? Just look at soap operas, for example.

    DC (and Marvel) should be emphasizing quality with every issue. Each one. And creative teams should be expected to tell more than just one or two (overlong) stories. Why not five or six, counting 2 to 3 one shots? This gives the reader a sense of value. Like, "these stories are really good for the money".

    But, hey. I'm just a dreamer. (The same guy who thinks actors should actually resemble the characters they play, and public figures shouldn't lie on camera [or in print].)

  9. #24
    Ohm, Sweet, Ohm dumbstruck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ACS View Post
    I have to disagree, guys. You're thinking mainly in terms of people who are already accustomed to multi-issue arcs and/or TPBs. The problem with both is that they cost too much, take too long, and are tend to be inconsistent (by nature). Like you said, Ryu, guys will often just buy one arc (or less) a year. That's no way to maintainólet alone growóa business.
    I think you might be misunderstanding a little bit. Yes, we currently have multi-issue arcs. But largely, everything happens in that arc, and then it's done. Less and less are plot points being carried on. Back in the late 80's/90's, you could have plot points introduced and not have it pay off for a couple years. Now, you get a plot point and it pays off within that story arc. That's what I meant when I said they're more accessible now than they have been in a long time. It is easier to jump on a title, and even if you come in mid-story, you only have one or two issues to catch up on, as opposed to a year's worth.

  10. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by ACS View Post
    I have to disagree, guys. You're thinking mainly in terms of people who are already accustomed to multi-issue arcs and/or TPBs. The problem with both is that they cost too much, take too long, and are tend to be inconsistent (by nature). Like you said, Ryu, guys will often just buy one arc (or less) a year. That's no way to maintain—let alone grow—a business.
    Dumbstruck beat me to the punch to steal my thunder a bit, but since we seem to be on the same point, let me back it up with an eloquent, yeah what Dumbstruck said.

    Trade sales are up, and it illustrates a market shift to fans, just like everything else in todays day and age, want it now. They want a quick concise story. Intro, build up, climax, end. The nice thing, and good writers, can write an arc, that is more or less self contained, as far as story goes, but be part of a larger story.

    Quote Originally Posted by ACS View Post
    The only way to grow the comics industry is by producing more one shots. It's easy to say that a multi-issue storyline is accessible, but I just don't see it. Why should I pay upwards of $18.00 for a story that might just suck? How is any story told in multiple parts (within a larger, decades old continuity) "accessible"? Just look at soap operas, for example.
    I would disagree that one-shots help. People like a story to be larger. With stories going from arc to arc, they operate in a larger overall story. What is good about story arcs, they give quick simple reads, but also allow (if written as such) to be part of a bigger story. You could buy a one-shot and have the story suck, and the story is in the eye of the beholder. Not everyone likes the same things.

    We've also had one-shots in the comic world for quite some time. I can't remember any particular one-shots selling consistently at a high level.

    Quote Originally Posted by ACS View Post
    DC (and Marvel) should be emphasizing quality with every issue. Each one. And creative teams should be expected to tell more than just one or two (overlong) stories. Why not five or six, counting 2 to 3 one shots? This gives the reader a sense of value. Like, "these stories are really good for the money".
    Saying a story is a one-shot and a better story than a single issue/story that is part of an arc, isn't necessarily true. I like character and story developement, so if issues were just one-shots, we wouldn't have the luxury of getting more involved stories, or secondary characters that spin out on their own.

    Stories are constantly in motion, and the neat thing is, whether you like individual issues, huge decade sprawling story lines, or 6 issue arcs, the current way comics are being written, seem to cater to all of that. I am a completionist collector. I like reading every arc, and having every issue. There are a lot fans who like to read what they consider a, "good," arc, then drop off until later.

    Anything that gets comics more exposure, can't be all bad, it's probably more good than bad. There could easily be a string of 2-3, "really good arcs," in say Spiderman, that gets a fan hooked and buying continually. Even if it's just 2-3 arcs, that's anywhere from 12-18 issues of a book sold, versus just 1 from a good one-shot. With comics i feel most fans know, that each issue builds towards something. The well written comics close and arc, but start another, "good," arc during that arc, or near the close, to keep readers coming back. It works well for writing for trade, or individual issues.

    Comics just need to be more accessible. Comics are targeted more to the 20-30 year old demographic, and i am inclined to believe it's because they no longer are marketing to kids, they hooked a lot of younger readers in the 80's-90's. A lot of us are still around, and so the stories had to evolve to be more relevent to us. Parents, self included, wouldn't want a younger kid reading some of the stuff in comics today. I am all for comics that meet my particular tastes, but comics wouldn't suffer too much being toned down a bit, and reaching a younger audience. One that says, "buy me this, please."
    Last edited by ryuluddy; 12-02-2010 at 01:38 PM.

  11. #26
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    Fair points about character development. I had forgotten how deep the continuity tangle was on some series. Yes, obviously arcs are more self-contained now. However, I'd argue that's not always a good thing. Like I said, individual stories should be short and have strong continuity ties. The other problem with today's TPB-focused publishing strategy is that you can get two consecutive arcs that feel completely disconnected from each other. Like, you finish reading arc A (which feels like a Law & Order), then go to arc B (which feels like a CSI). And surely we can agree that too many stories feel stretched out these days. Granted, Marvel seems guiltier of this than DC, but it's still a big problem at both companies. Origin stories shouldn't take six issues. That's just sloppy TPB padding.

    BTW, I should point out that half the things I'm writing here are less articulate variations on of my informal "fix comics" plan. When I say "more one shots" I don't mean to imply that they would make up the majority of issues in a year. I simply think they should be more than an annual accordance. This way, new fans have a more obvious jumping on point. And old fans get a "break" from the more soap operatic stories.

  12. #27
    Ohm, Sweet, Ohm dumbstruck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ryuluddy View Post
    Dumbstruck beat me to the punch to steal my thunder a bit, but since we seem to be on the same point, let me back it up with an eloquent, yeah what Dumbstruck said.
    I'm sorry.

    But thanks.

  13. #28
    Ohm, Sweet, Ohm dumbstruck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ACS View Post
    Fair points about character development. I had forgotten how deep the continuity tangle was on some series. Yes, obviously arcs are more self-contained now. However, I'd argue that's not always a good thing. Like I said, individual stories should be short and have strong continuity ties. The other problem with today's TPB-focused publishing strategy is that you can get two consecutive arcs that feel completely disconnected from each other. Like, you finish reading arc A (which feels like a Law & Order), then go to arc B (which feels like a CSI). And surely we can agree that too many stories feel stretched out these days. Granted, Marvel seems guiltier of this than DC, but it's still a big problem at both companies. Origin stories shouldn't take six issues. That's just sloppy TPB padding.

    BTW, I should point out that half the things I'm writing here are less articulate variations on of my informal "fix comics" plan. When I say "more one shots" I don't mean to imply that they would make up the majority of issues in a year. I simply think they should be more than an annual accordance. This way, new fans have a more obvious jumping on point. And old fans get a "break" from the more soap operatic stories.
    I agree with your points about "writing for the trade" and decompressed storytelling. That being said, I don't see that as necessarily being prohibitive to a prospective new reader. Story arcs were around 15 years ago too. The difference being at that time, you had stories filled with subplots that carried through multiple arcs. Typically, you don't have that anymore, which makes modern arcs that much more accessible than those of the past.

  14. #29
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    It's simple:

    1) Return to "all ages" writing standards. Get rid of the smut, shock violence and other socially questionable content. You want youth readers, you gotta write so that Mom and Dad aren't grabbing the torches and pitchforks when they find a comic in little Johnny's bookbag.

    2) Return to the concept of heroes as better people than the norm. No more "I'm a 'hero' because I'm less of an a** than my villains." No more Clo-Thor, Tony Stark is held to account by the hero community for his utter betrayal of all that makes a hero a hero, etc.

    3) Get comics back into "mainstream" venues (grocery stores, convenience stores, Wal Mart, etc)

    4) Take advantage of natural advertising opportunities. There should not be a SINGLE Marvel movie produced that doesn't have an add for the comics in the previews/trailers section.

    5) Show a commitment to TRUE character diveristy by getting rid of the umpteenth Avengers spin off or X-men tie in and give us a wider assortment of characters...get the "B list" back in print (Cloak and Dagger, Spider-Girl [the REAL one], New Warriors, et al)

  15. #30
    14 Time Rita's Champion SUPERECWFAN1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShadowDemon View Post
    It's simple:

    1) Return to "all ages" writing standards. Get rid of the smut, shock violence and other socially questionable content. You want youth readers, you gotta write so that Mom and Dad aren't grabbing the torches and pitchforks when they find a comic in little Johnny's bookbag.
    But are mom and dad grabbing the pitchforks in looking at the comics now ? Or have they considering TV is just as voilent and bad ? Hell look at the voilent SAW movies...many parents would take their kids to see them watch people get tortured savagely.

    Plus the kids of today aren't as fragile towards voilence as you would suspect. Many can handle what they see in a comic now.

    Also just because you go to an "All-Ages" concept doesn't mean instant sales. The comic book buying audiance is older and have aged more. It could alienate the crowd already buying the comics now to try and step back to thinking you can lure a younger crowd.

    Plus this younger crowd has books geared towards them with the Johnny DC , Marvel Adventures line. Thats there for them currently.

    2) Return to the concept of heroes as better people than the norm. No more "I'm a 'hero' because I'm less of an a** than my villains." No more Clo-Thor, Tony Stark is held to account by the hero community for his utter betrayal of all that makes a hero a hero, etc.
    Heroes age and change as people as the world grows. The generation now see the not so perfect as heroes. Because they are human and have problems.

    A perfect example of the growing change in heroes is the Pro Wrestling business. With its good heroes vs bad villains. Hulk Hogan in the 80's preaches the whole "Say your prayers and take your vitamins" mantra. In the 90's it changed to Stone Cold Steve Austin who preached "DTA , Don't Trust Anybody...and Austin 3:16 Means I just whupped your ass !"

    Austin was cheered because he was now the cool new hero for this generation of fans. The Rock would emerge after a disastorous attempt to do an 80's hero (smiling , slapping hands...being so nice). Once The Rock morphed into a face who basically used his Florida State background and became arrogant as fuck....he scored with kids.

    Its the changing era's really. Heroes have to change , have shades of grey now. Because being so perfect and good...well people see thru it.

    3) Get comics back into "mainstream" venues (grocery stores, convenience stores, Wal Mart, etc)
    As listed elsewhere this will not happen. Because the price point even now at $2.99-$3.99 isn't big enough to give it space on the racks now. The magazines they stock sell for $5-$7 bucks a pop and look better to them on the stands.

    4) Take advantage of natural advertising opportunities. There should not be a SINGLE Marvel movie produced that doesn't have an add for the comics in the previews/trailers section.
    I think its basically a studio deal why movies get the trailers and all. You really can't do it there because the next movie is promoted and all.

    5) Show a commitment to TRUE character diveristy by getting rid of the umpteenth Avengers spin off or X-men tie in and give us a wider assortment of characters...get the "B list" back in print (Cloak and Dagger, Spider-Girl [the REAL one], New Warriors, et al)
    Marvel and DC are taking chances on some books . But its clear many fail pretty quick. Due to bad sales and all. Its safer to launch a spinoff of a successful franchise like Green Lantern (3 and counting) and Avengers (a bunch).
    "Heads up-- If Havok's position in UA #5 really upset you, it's time to drown yourself hobo piss. Seriously, do it. It's the only solution." - Rick Remender

    Sucks 200 character limit.

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