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Thread: Marvel Smashes Three Titles Into The Top Five For March 2012 - But Did They?

  1. #211
    King of Cool Peter J Poole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by khuxford View Post
    In fairness, he left out the '00s.
    Don't you know there have been no new readers since Joey Q seized power...?

    Cheers
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  2. #212
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    Quote Originally Posted by khuxford View Post
    ...Ummmm...exactly when have comics gotten a set of books that meld well with the movies in front of that movie audience?
    Star Wars
    1967 Batman
    1978 Superman
    1989 Burton Batman

    For the 60s Batman movie (and TV Show), the books were made to be a tiny bit more like the movie. But the Superman movie was much more like the existing books.
    For the Burton movie, I'd say the books were already heading in the stylistic direction since both trailed Dark Knight Returns.

    And Star Wars? That book was HUGE. As was everything Star Wars until about Return of the Jedi, but especially between Star Wars and Empire.

    The key for all of these though is that comics were readily available to the general public. Today's movies (and TV shows) don't have the same impact because comics are no longer everywhere.
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  3. #213
    Dean of Cool University SMARTASS8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Kalicki View Post
    That's a common strategy that befuddles me. It used to come up a lot with people who hated DC but loved Vertigo. "I would never read a DC Comic, but I don't count Vertigo which is awesome!"
    Or "I hate DC Comics but Batman is awesome".
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  4. #214
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    Quote Originally Posted by D Bell View Post
    Star Wars
    1967 Batman
    1978 Superman
    1989 Burton Batman

    For the 60s Batman movie (and TV Show), the books were made to be a tiny bit more like the movie. But the Superman movie was much more like the existing books.
    For the Burton movie, I'd say the books were already heading in the stylistic direction since both trailed Dark Knight Returns.

    And Star Wars? That book was HUGE. As was everything Star Wars until about Return of the Jedi, but especially between Star Wars and Empire.

    The key for all of these though is that comics were readily available to the general public. Today's movies (and TV shows) don't have the same impact because comics are no longer everywhere.
    Well, agreed...but that was sort of my point to Blade: accessibility is the key issue in not being able to capitalize on as much of the movie audience these days. It'd never be one-to-one, but it should be able to bump it far more than it does.
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  5. #215
    King of Cool Peter J Poole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QCCBob View Post
    Next few years, same as the last. I don't know when the stunts die. Once they do, then it'll get interesting especially if, as history shows us, it's a sudden apocalyptic event like the Image collapse. We've seen more and more people realize that their '80s-'90s comics are virtually worthless, but the economy takes a good deal of the blame for now. Since nothing is currently on the horizon to indicate a change in the majors, I don't see anything much changing. The big question is when does Hollywood get tired of superheroes (and I do mean a definite 'when') and that source of revenue cuts back. Until then, it's just the consistent attrition rate of us old guys aging and dying out with precious little growth to replace us. The DM crisis point hits when we see the prices rise to the point that we have a difficult time getting enough sellable product to make profits with. Humorously, it's the reverse of what ran comics off the newsstands and into the DM.
    Hmmm... I don't know if Hollywood will get tired of capes, any more than of any other genre. I think there is a large enough body of work out there now that people will keep coming back to it, and not necessarily 'just' as big expensive adaptations of comics. How long the movie and merchandising people will see the publishing division as a worthwhile investment for developing/nurturing the IPs might be an equally valid concern...

    Rising prices to meet dwindling customers has kind of worked for a few years, because it keeps the profit margins sweet. Dwindling customers - maybe because of higher prices - is possibly a bigger threat, because even with 'every copy paid for' they have to sell a certain number to stay afloat. If we take unchallenged, for the Hell of it, Bright-Raven's figure of $15,000 as the basic creative costs, a book needs to clear that, plus a contribution towards corporate costs... even assuming 100% sell through of orders, some of the Big Two books have to be flying on fumes today... And Christ alone knows how some of the bottom 100 books hang in there, even with back end payments to creators...

    Cheers
    "You might think that... I couldn't possibly comment..."

  6. #216
    King of Cool Peter J Poole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QCCBob View Post
    What I want to see is growth, while we're still in decent enough shape to fuel it. Stop aiming the same style books at the same demographic that is fading with age. Stop simply propping up the numbers with stunts that run away collectors to get short term speculation dollars. Put out actual all ages material especially with the characters who everyone outside our bubble thinks are all ages. I'm not saying every Batman title, for instance, needs to all ages, but there certainly needs to be a couple that are and that aren't just cartoon books. Put out titles aimed at females and make an effort for the first time in history to push them, i.e. Google ads tied to women's interests, not just ads triggered by comic books. (For the love of God, please try to avoid the sophmoric jokes you're all thinking...) I don't think it's rocket science to try and get NEW readers as opposed to the same people they always go for, but they actually have to make a dedicated effort, more than individual shops can do. I know that people can find us or a major chain, if given a reason, and the ones geographically hindered can always use the web. The only limits placed on growth in this industry have been placed on us by the laziness and unwillingness of DC and Marvel to go after new readers since forever. We need them to bring in new readers that we can push to more than just the majors, to books that age with them without continuing to sacrifice the future.

    That's the key. We don't have the bridges anymore. You don't progress from Disney to Archie to DC to Marvel to Indies over a lifetime anymore and pass it on. There are kiddy books for under 12 and we jump to late teens. It's been that way since the 1970s and you see what's happened. If not for the GI Joe/Transformers generation, I shudder to think where we'd be. Even at that, we've got too many 'collectors' with their comics sealed in bags and children who live in mortal terror of getting caught touching their Dad's comics, if the material is even remotely suitable for them anyway.
    Hell to the Yes on 99% of that.

    There needs to be more diversity of product, there needs to be massive co-ordinated advertising of the product, and there needs to be deliberate effort to change the perception of the genre, medium, hobby and industry... The fun part is persuading the industry - which really means the Big Two - to stump up the money and take the risks on doing that before it gets to do or die time...

    Warner, I think should definitely put as much effort into getting IPs from movies and TV into comics as they do trying to go the other way.

    Comics should be pushed hard as part of literacy, education, adult literacy and 'English as a second language' education.

    Advertise it to the parents and grand-parents too.. "Remember how much you enjoyed comics? Give your kids that feeling with a subscription/gift agreement at your LCS"

    All ages... sighgroan... real 7 to 70 in one book, for a majority of books, I just don't think it can be done.

    Three strands, 7 to 10, 10-13/14, 14 and up sounds more achievable to me. Make the middle layer either books like Superboy, Young Avengers, etc, etc, about the real in continuity characters, or Smallville style it about the real characters as young teenagers, so they do 'count' as real books...

    The trouble is, I don't think there's that much that can be done just with content beyond that.

    Whatever the publishers may think about 'stay afloat, don't lose money, don't take risks' as the golden maxim, I think most editors/writers/artists want to produce stuff that gets out to as big an audience as possible. For the royalties and incentive clauses if for nothing else.

    Thing is, no one can put their hand on their heart and swear something will be the next huge thing. No one sat down and told Claremont to write an X-Men reboot that would save the company and shape the industry. No one told Moore and Miller to infect the industry with "grim and gritty" for decades. And someone thought JMS rebooting the Red Circle characters and Rise of Arsenal were good ideas...

    It's always, always, always about fling everything at the wall and see what sticks. And for decades, hundreds of publishers and thousands of creators have been flinging stuff at the wall, and we're looking today at what stuck... If there is a formula for the all-singing, all-dancing, all-ages ubercomic, why has no one found it?

    Maybe advertising and getting more people to try more comics would constitute a bigger or newer wall, to which different stuff might stick, but it still feels - almost literally - like a hit and miss approach to bet the bank on...

    Which is why I tend to look at solutions around format, and delivery, and infrastructure, which always ends up taking me to the D word...

    Which is a familiar story to all of us I guess...

    Cheers
    Last edited by Peter J Poole; 04-10-2012 at 11:11 AM.
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  7. #217
    Time Out QCCBob's Avatar
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    Peter

    I understand the frustration, I do. But I have to believe that the decades of all ages material that got us all here HAS to still be possible. The only reason it's not is idiotic management by editorial types who can't see past yesterday. Much of DC52 is typically all ages even though it stupidly has a T rating because apparently (and given the responses I've seen on BC, admitedly they may be right in some cases) 30-50 year olds won't buy books that aren't aimed at teens. That's part of the reason I hated ratings in the first place, but if two/thirds of the books magically transform but are still good (just missing faces being peeled off and costumed sex on rooftops), do you really think it'll be the end of life on the planet?

    Again, advertising by the publishers aimed at people other than comic buyers is key especially in bypassing the relative lack of DM shop coverage in rural areas, I just don't think it's going to matter much to do it if they're just pushing the same stuff. (Which, of course, is still my biggest problem with the 'D' word saving the day.) It's a lesson I think you're all going to see in a scant few months when the DC 52 numbers aren't artificially inflated anymore. The people they brought in didn't stay and the people they lost in doing it will still be gone. The books that would have sold without the stunt, i.e. JL and Aquaman, will hold reasonably well, but the bloom is off the 52 rose. I think that would already be clear if we ever got numbers adjusted for returns.
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  8. #218
    King of Cool Peter J Poole's Avatar
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    CF101 just liked a post of mine that was me 99% agreeing with Bob...

    Why do I suddenly feel like a human condom?

    Cheers
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  9. #219
    Time Out QCCBob's Avatar
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    D Bell

    It's hard to pare this down, but I think the best way I can say this is you're over-generalizing a bit. The '60s Batman show was a huge FAD that burned out quick, not really a 'hit', and, by 1968, the Batman comics were down to eight books a year and in cancellation range until O'Neil/Adams got carte blanche to save the day.

    Superman comics simply weren't very good and, as was pretty much admitted later, DC didn't care because 'good people' weren't put on Superman books.

    The '89 Batman did actually spur sales, but more because comics were almost totally off the real world radar. You're not going to see that effect again unless comics disappear from the pop culture as they had then.

    Star Wars = Walking Dead.

    But, the economics of comics makes it impossible to ever see comics in every drug store, pony keg, and so on ever again unless sales increase dramatically which won't happen probably ever. There just isn't enough money to be made in straight, returnable retail establishments with a retail price point under $10 which is why TPs have fallen out of favor there now because the sales on $12 to $18 books aren't high enough and higher retails don't sell hardly at all. You may not want the DM, but you aren't going to EVER see cheaper prices OUTSIDE of the DM without exponential sales growth because the ONLY way you get prices as low as we do is we take on all the risk and the publisher takes none.

  10. #220
    Bleeding Cool
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    Quote Originally Posted by QCCBob View Post
    Peter

    I understand the frustration, I do. But I have to believe that the decades of all ages material that got us all here HAS to still be possible. The only reason it's not is idiotic management by editorial types who can't see past yesterday. Much of DC52 is typically all ages even though it stupidly has a T rating because apparently (and given the responses I've seen on BC, admitedly they may be right in some cases) 30-50 year olds won't buy books that aren't aimed at teens. That's part of the reason I hated ratings in the first place, but if two/thirds of the books magically transform but are still good (just missing faces being peeled off and costumed sex on rooftops), do you really think it'll be the end of life on the planet?
    I'd agree with that, but the most lurid New 52 stuff (Wonder Woman, Detective, Catwoman, Animal Man etc) all seems to be selling pretty decently, certainly compared to some of the more 'all ages' titles. Even Red Hood still looks to be safely out of the danger zone cancellation-wise. I don't know if anyone would have expected that.

    Pretty clearly, there are all sorts of other factors that could be, and probably are, involved, but equally, based on the relaunch, I'm not sure you can argue that sex and violence are necessarily a turn-off for the reader, at least beyond the confines of the shop you work at.

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