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  1. #31
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    Excellent column. I completely agree with both it and most of the comments here thus far.

    Looking past the many mistakes made by the industry as a whole, is there anything comic related that has IMPROVED in the past few years?

    - Paper quality is pretty good
    - An increase in the number of collections has made certain runs much easier to collect (I have all of Claremont's X-Men, New Mutants, and Excalibur thanks to various collections)
    - Many different art styles and colouring techniques have appeared, adding variety and artistic diversity
    - ... I can't think of anything else

  2. #32
    R.I.P. Wildstorm Strannik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Scott View Post
    If my friends, who go to bars and listen to and/or play in indie bands, are wowed by Scott Pilgrim and want to read the comic, there's also... what, exactly?
    • King City
    • Sharknife
    • Hopeless Savages
    • Blue Monday


    And those are just the ones I can think of atop of my head.

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by poneley View Post
    I only got two points-

    As a consumer I want trades and hardcovers. I'm tired of "collecting comics". I'm not 12 anymore. I don't have the space. If Mr. Hibbs is complaining that comics are no longer "collectible" then screw it. What Marvel and DC need to do is make big pushes when the hardcover and/or paperback are released. I keep close track of the releases and have a "pull list" for paperbacks and hardcovers but not everyone else does. Put the newly released collections up front like the new single issues. Quit fighting and quit complaining of the low selling single issues. We no longer want single issues. As a consumer I want trades from my favorite characters and creative teams. Its a simple as that.
    No it's NOT "simple as that". Trades are an absolute KILLER in terms of diversity of readership.

    I will explain: Let's say I have $40 (US) to spend on comics in a month. At the "bad old" price of $3.99, I could afford to read 10 different comics, each featuring different characters/teams/etc.

    Going to "trade", my $40 will only buy me TWO trades (average trade price ~$15). And I will have $10 left over that I can spend on other titles, so add 3 "monthlies".

    Going to "trade" has cut my diversity of support for titles in HALF. Instead of supporting sales of 10 books, at BEST I'm supporting 5.

    Thus, "monthlies" are better for both me as a reader (I get more diversity of titles to read), and for the business (sells a wider variety of comics).

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmurphy1968 View Post
    I think Mr. Hibbs is correct. How Many Avengers books do we have these days? X-Men? Superman? Batman? Green Lantern? This type of thing has driven me from all of the titles that are "family" book years ago. The exceptions are GL and Legion because I am really enjoying them all but with four GL titles (GL, GL Corps, GL: Emerald Warriors and Brightest Day) I am considering dropping theGL line.
    I think the problem there is two-fold: homogeneity and excessive interrelatedness.

    Take early-mid 90s X-books. Sure, there were a lot of titles (2 Vols of X-Men, X-Factor, Excalibur, X-Force), but really, only the two "core" books were interconnected except for the big year end crossover. The other three had their own "voices", their own plotlines, and their own casts of characters. They even took place in wildly divergent locations.

    X-books today all draw from the same mass pool of X-characters, who all live more or less in the same place (San Fran?), and whose stories are all intertwined into meta-arcs and overplots not just annually, but MONTHLY.

    Quote Originally Posted by QCCBob View Post
    I find it very difficult to imagine turning this around if the regular monthly numbers take yet another shot this time from the moronic digital push that is aimed ONLY at the people who currently buy comic books, rather than any serious attempt to reach the 'real' world.
    That would mean they'd have to clean up their books. The general audience is not in the market for cannibalism, implied incest, ultra-graphic violence and gratuitous sexuality, all of which have been depicted in various supposedly "mainstream" comics over the last few years.

    For that matter, neither is a significant portion of the existing market. I was in a conversation with 5 other individuals at my LCS the other day (including the staffer guy) and we unanimously agreed that the nasty tone that comics have taken this last 5-7 years is a HUGE put off. I can think of several other people who were not present for that conversation who have expressed the exact same sentiments.

    And, yes, there is a part of me that almost wants to see all the TPB and digital boosters crying when monthlies aren't around to pay the freight for the industry and the prices skyrocket while the variety of product goes down the tubes even worse that it is now. Without the guaranteed profitability from the DM system, it will not be pretty.
    No, it won't.

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeCr View Post
    My perception is that there is a pervasive sense of ennui amongst the core Marvel fanbase right now and, even thought they ARE publishing some very good titles, the market isn't rallying around many of them in a significant fashion.
    Because the bean counters in Marketing have made Marvel gun-shy about letting an audience build. It's like Fox television and the way it will cut a show off at the knees the instant it looks like a ratings drop (or if it isn't a smash hit within the first half-season). Think Firefly for a good example.

    Quote Originally Posted by don1138 View Post
    It seems to me like the marketing departments at Disney and Warners have taken over creative control. "Just shut up and buy, fanboy!" You want to know what they think of us? Just look at the product on the shelves. Never in my 30+ years of fandom have I felt less respected by the industry, despite the plethora of Adam Hughes busts and Absolute Editions. To paraphrase Alan Moore, "Love the medium; despise the industry."
    Marvel, at least, was there before the Disney buyout. That crap goes all the way back to the early days of the Jemas regime.
    Last edited by ShadowDemon; 12-25-2010 at 10:22 PM.

  5. #35
    Steven Willis nyrdyv's Avatar
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    Brian,

    You mentioned in your article an example of Thor being historically barely able to support one series in a month, so Marvel shipping 11 Thor titles in one month was overkill.

    My question is to what extent is the LCS then responsible to not order all 11 titles, with this example?

    Sure, you have your customers that are collectors that will want most if not all of them. You know your customers, you order them for those customers. But, only then also order 1 or 2 titles for actual display and sales on the wall.

    As the retailer, is it not then also your responsibility to only order, stock and display the product you know will be sellable in your store? You know your customers and how stock turnover is.

    I am _not_ saying all of the problems exist with the retailer. It obviously is not. But, following the obvious line of thought, can't retailers themselves make a point by just not order should diverse titles for valuable wall space in the LCS?

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