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  1. #1

    Default Will DC start publishing more like Marvel in 2013 to regain market dominance?

    Going into the new year, it seems Marvel has regained market dominance once again. DC will almost certainly make attempts to move ahead or at least make things more equal. So far DC has seemingly not been interested in double-shipping any of their titles while Marvel double-ships quite a few of them. Likewise, outside of the Batman family, DC has not embraced the idea of multiple books around the same concept or character. At least not to the same extent as Marvel.

    Do you see DC doing any of the two in the new year?
    If so, how can they expand their franchises? JLI? JL Elite, Task Force? DCnU Young Justice? etc?
    If not, how can they become competitive again? How would you like to see them do it?

  2. #2
    evil maybe, genius no stk's Avatar
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    They are competitive. They're just losing the competition. Someone has to.

  3. #3

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    They don't have to do much to be more competitive. Marvel jumped ahead because they launched a bunch of #1's and the drop off will make it level.

  4. #4
    Senior Member ascended's Avatar
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    So, I havent checked out sales figures in a while, but as far as I know, DC is still holding their own quite well. It wasnt that long ago where the very idea of DC gaining a lead on market share or dollars over Marvel was simply laughable. They were the number 2 big company simply because there were no other big companies. But they took the market completely for several months, most of a year, with the reboot, despite having fewer titles at lower prices. And now (again my info may be outdated) they're still going strong and giving Marvel a good fight. Bear in mind, Marvel is still riding the high of AvX and the NOW rebranding. When the novelty of that wears off, they'll have to have another giant event planned, or else rely on putting out real quality work, to keep a strong lead.

    I dont want to see DC start double shipping, jack their prices, or start putting out dozens of titles that are essentially all interchangeable. Marvel has some books I really enjoy, but I have no interest in three dozen X-Men books, twice as many Avengers books, and seven thousand Wolverine titles. And right now, it feels like thats just about all Marvel has, aside from a couple Spider-Man titles that, up until Amazing 700, no one was really talking about.

    All DC needs to do, and all they should do, is continue to put out the best stuff they can with the best creative teams they can put together. They're taking risks and a lot of them are paying off.

    Besides, the real issue isnt the comics division. Its DC Entertainment. DC has a lot of catching up to do when it comes to larger media efforts. They have a great grasp on the cartoon market, and always have. Live action television isnt doing bad compared to Marvel either. But their movie division needs to get its act together in a big way, and their video games need the same. They do that, start putting out some quality films and a steady stream of good games, and you'll see their comics numbers increase some. Between that and a strong focus on creativity and quality in their books, DC will be just fine.

    And besides, its not about beating Marvel. Its about staying afloat in the market, and maybe even trying to improve it some.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by galactica View Post
    Going into the new year, it seems Marvel has regained market dominance once again. DC will almost certainly make attempts to move ahead or at least make things more equal. So far DC has seemingly not been interested in double-shipping any of their titles while Marvel double-ships quite a few of them. Likewise, outside of the Batman family, DC has not embraced the idea of multiple books around the same concept or character. At least not to the same extent as Marvel.

    Do you see DC doing any of the two in the new year?
    If so, how can they expand their franchises? JLI? JL Elite, Task Force? DCnU Young Justice? etc?
    If not, how can they become competitive again? How would you like to see them do it?
    I don't think DC will double-ship. As it is, they are very good about books coming out on time, and forcing double-shipping (even if only occasional) will be pushing it. Also, I don't see DC increasing many titles to $3.99, at least not in the near future. The fact that they have so many $2.99 books is something they can lord over Marvel, so they'll probably want to keep it until economic realities force them to increase prices again.

    Something they *might* do is stagger new waves - we've already seen that with the Fourth Wave, which is spread over 3 months. I think this may be a reaction to the fact that some books need to be cancelled now, not next month, just as much as Marvel NOW!, though.

    As far as expanding franchises, we're already seeing it - there will be a new Superman title; JLA, Katana, and Vibe are all related to JL; and Constantine, who is also appearing in JLD. This is more the way DC will do things, though, and the way they've been doing them for two decades - we'll see related titles but we won't see them do what Marvel is doing, i.e. a bunch of similarly named teams with overlapping membership (I don't even know how many Avengers and X-teams are out there now). There's really no reason to do that, since over a span of months, DC seems to be competing pretty well with Marvel, all told, with its current strategy.

  6. #6
    Senior Member DaronK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpadesSlick View Post
    They don't have to do much to be more competitive. Marvel jumped ahead because they launched a bunch of #1's and the drop off will make it level.
    Right. You can already see the drop off starting because of the double shipping. I have a feeling things are going to be much closer between them for awhile now. Other than months when one or the other is doing a major event or something...

  7. #7
    pygophile and podophile Dr. Cheesesteak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stk View Post
    They are competitive. They're just losing the competition. Someone has to.
    my first thoughts too. Plus, I think OP is misusing or misunderstanding the term "dominance".

    but, I do understand his observations on the different publishing strats of the 2 companies. I'm not sure I'd like to see 5 or 7 Supes titles or 5 JL books...
    Last edited by Dr. Cheesesteak; 12-27-2012 at 02:15 PM.
    Comics were happier before the Internet turned writing superhero stories into fruitless attempts to impress/entertain a small group of ppl who appear to hate comics and their creators.
    Grant Morrison

  8. #8
    Welcome to Bleeker Street MRP's Avatar
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    What I would like to see DC do since they have locked their releases down to a steady reliable 4 week schedule is revive an initiative they did once upon a time with the "Fifth week events" such as their Tangent books, the New Years Evil stuff, etc. Essentially gain market share and dollar share by putting out additional special books in those fifth weeks that are barren of books in five Wednesday months. This would be a great way to showcase books they are already doing like the National Comics, the Joe Kubert Presents books and the like, but also try initiatives for new product or exploiting other properties-one shots etc. that could do solo stories of characters on team books-ex. In this Month's fifth week event Shining Light on the Dark we have a Zatanna solo one shot, a Spectre one shot, a Batman/Deadman team up one shot etc. or this month's On the Edge fifth week event features one shots from solo characters in the Edge line.

    You could throw fans of the classic DCU a bone and do a Retro Event like the Retroactive books DC did a few years back. You could do a week long cross-over event telling the whole story over 4-5 issue released that week.

    It could be a showcase to introduce new character into the DCU, give new and upcoming talent a chance to show their stuff, or give creators a chance to tell stories with characters they are not normally associated with. It would give readers a reason to look forward to those fifth weeks, a chance for DC to sell more books without interrupting their normal release schedule, thus gain market share, a chance to experiment and increase the diversity of their line, renew trademarks, give properties a face lift, give popular back up features a chance to tell a longer story, etc.

    Overall though, I would like DC (or Marvel for that matter) to spend more time trying to expand the size of the pie (i.e. market) rather than fighting over what is left of the pie there is. Try to sell more books overall to more readers rather than get more dollars form the existing market than Marvel does. Move from the focus on the zero sum gain game to focus on expanding the market as a whole. Not going to happen, but it's what I'd like to see them do. We all have our pipe dreams.
    -M
    A lunatic is easily recognized...You can tell him by the liberties he takes with common sense...and by the fact that sooner or later he brings up the Templars.
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  9. #9
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    Once Man of Steel, JLA, Geoff Johns and David Goyer's new project, Trinity War, and a SLEW of mini series related to it, DC will more than likely be on top again.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by ascended View Post
    So, I havent checked out sales figures in a while, but as far as I know, DC is still holding their own quite well. It wasnt that long ago where the very idea of DC gaining a lead on market share or dollars over Marvel was simply laughable. They were the number 2 big company simply because there were no other big companies. But they took the market completely for several months, most of a year, with the reboot, despite having fewer titles at lower prices. And now (again my info may be outdated) they're still going strong and giving Marvel a good fight. Bear in mind, Marvel is still riding the high of AvX and the NOW rebranding. When the novelty of that wears off, they'll have to have another giant event planned, or else rely on putting out real quality work, to keep a strong lead.

    I dont want to see DC start double shipping, jack their prices, or start putting out dozens of titles that are essentially all interchangeable.
    Marvel has some books I really enjoy, but I have no interest in three dozen X-Men books, twice as many Avengers books, and seven thousand Wolverine titles. And right now, it feels like thats just about all Marvel has, aside from a couple Spider-Man titles that, up until Amazing 700, no one was really talking about.

    All DC needs to do, and all they should do, is continue to put out the best stuff they can with the best creative teams they can put together.
    They're taking risks and a lot of them are paying off.

    Besides, the real issue isnt the comics division. Its DC Entertainment. DC has a lot of catching up to do when it comes to larger media efforts. They have a great grasp on the cartoon market, and always have. Live action television isnt doing bad compared to Marvel either. But their movie division needs to get its act together in a big way, and their video games need the same. They do that, start putting out some quality films and a steady stream of good games, and you'll see their comics numbers increase some. Between that and a strong focus on creativity and quality in their books, DC will be just fine.

    And besides, its not about beating Marvel. Its about staying afloat in the market, and maybe even trying to improve it some.
    Most important bits highlighted.

    Though I'll disagree you on the games front, I don't see many problems there. The Batman Arkham series are regarded as the best superhero games ever and the Lego Batman games were also very well received, and Injustice: Gods Among Us also looks pretty good.

  11. #11
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    I don't think they will force double shipping. It's simply a bad choice, that's helping to kill the american comic book industry.
    Plus, as said, things will probably level again once the #1 effects wears off for Marvel as it has for DC.

  12. #12
    Veteran Member glennsim's Avatar
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    DC's position relative to Marvel is interesting but not really relevant to their success. What they need is the largest amount of sales compared to the lowest amount of costs.
    The DC relaunch was successful and was executed in what was most likely the best way it could given restrictions we wouldn't know about. No, your idea wouldn't have worked. Now move on.

  13. #13
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    If they start double shipping like Marvel, or mark up their books to $3.99 without the extra content then DC will lose a lot of readers.

    Double shipping a $3.99 book kills a good chunk of readership. Can you imagine how many more buyers Marvel would get if they didn't use this tactic?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by brandnewfan View Post
    Double shipping a $3.99 book kills a good chunk of readership. Can you imagine how many more buyers Marvel would get if they didn't use this tactic?
    I just know a lot of my interest in trying out All-New X-Men and Iron Man was gone once I realized the shipping schedule was insane.
    Last edited by Bruce Kent; 12-27-2012 at 03:05 PM.

  15. #15
    Senior Member DaronK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Kent View Post
    I just know a lot of my interest in trying out All-New X-Men and Iron Man was gone once I realized the shipping schedule.
    Well if it makes you feel any better All New X-Men #1 was one of the worst comics I've read all year...

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