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Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?

11 Apr 2020 14:49 #67585 by brantley

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11 Apr 2020 16:54 #67587 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?

brantley wrote: www.nytimes.com/2020/04/10/arts/comic-books-coronavirus.html

--Brantley


I wish it was just the pandemic, but comics have become less fun the last ten or so years. That might just be me, but I sense the problem goes deeper the pandemic. 

Here's the real question... did the huge uptick in superhero-related movies and TV shows help or hurt the comics industry?  

In other words, were people getting their comics fix on the screen and didn't need to buy individual rags, either hardcopy or electronic?  

I'm sure some felt that movies and TV would help comics. But I wonder.

Shadar

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11 Apr 2020 17:21 #67589 by Idylls
Replied by Idylls on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
Comics has been dying for a long time. SJW pandering to an audience that doesn't exist, who don't even care about the characters they're writing, attacking the customer base, gatekeeping creators, literally saying they're going to kill the industry. 

Sales went lower, hiking prices to compensate, putting pressure to comic book shops with many closing outright. It was a recipe for collapse with warnings ignored. Retailers has said this to managements of DC and Marvel but fell on deaf ears. And the SJWs kept on doing what they were doing and laughed.

It is only now they realize what is happening or what their deliberate actions accomplished. Pencils Down has been given, in other words stop whatever you are doing because we have nothing to pay you. Yes they're basically no longer have jobs.

This pandemic is probably what you call "mercy killing", putting the industry down rather than a slow agonizing death.

How could this happen in a time where awareness, interest and popularity of Superheroes is this high? The answers are out there it isn't hard to find.

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11 Apr 2020 17:44 #67591 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?

Idylls wrote: Comics has been dying for a long time. SJW pandering to an audience that doesn't exist, who don't even care about the characters they're writing, attacking the customer base, gatekeeping creators, literally saying they're going to kill the industry. 

Sales went lower, hiking prices to compensate, putting pressure to comic book shops with many closing outright. It was a recipe for collapse with warnings ignored. Retailers has said this to managements of DC and Marvel but fell on deaf ears. And the SJWs kept on doing what they were doing and laughed.

It is only now they realize what is happening or what their deliberate actions accomplished. Pencils Down has been given, in other words stop whatever you are doing because we have nothing to pay you. Yes they're basically no longer have jobs.

This pandemic is probably what you call "mercy killing", putting the industry down rather than a slow agonizing death.

How could this happen in a time where awareness, interest and popularity of Superheroes is this high? The answers are out there it isn't hard to find.


A question... is what you call SJW the cause of all the worlds problems, in your view?  

Personally, I don't see any connection. But then, Justice has always been a big thing for me, in all its forms. 

Shadar
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11 Apr 2020 17:46 #67592 by Idylls
Replied by Idylls on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?

shadar wrote:
Here's the real question... did the huge uptick in superhero-related movies and TV shows help or hurt the comics industry?  

Shadar


Neither. Marvel has like tie-in comics with their movies didn't really took off. The CW Supergirl has had I think 2 comics and 2 graphic novels. Keep in mind there have always been comic book movies from Michael Keaton's Batman, Blade, Spawn, Tobey Macquire Spider-Man,. Christopher Nolan's Batman, X-Men movies; and comics just continued on seemingly unaffected. There were hopeful and fearful discussions if they help or harm but there really isn't any noticeable effect.

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11 Apr 2020 18:03 #67594 by Idylls
Replied by Idylls on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?

shadar wrote:
A question... is what you call SJW the cause of all the worlds problems, in your view?  

Personally, I don't see any connection. But then, Justice has always been a big thing for me, in all its forms. 

Shadar


The world? Of course not! That would be foolish.

In comics? Yes. The evidence isn't hard to find. I stumbled upon it when I typed "comic reviews" back in 2017, maybe even earlier on YouTube. You could easily look at #Comicsgate at Twitter. I closed my account 2 years ago but looked at the #Pencils down just last week when news came out. 

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11 Apr 2020 18:25 #67595 by Idylls
Replied by Idylls on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
Just want to say its odd.

Netflix's The Witcher significantly raised sales of 3 year old Witcher games. The novels they're based on 500+% (five hundred not a typo) increase in sales. If I have a console or PC I would have bought those games. And I'm currently searching for the novels.

Supergirl comics just got cancelled and how many #1's has Captain Marvel has had.? 

Just some perspective.

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11 Apr 2020 18:41 #67597 by erikphandel
Replied by erikphandel on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
This pandemic is just the last nail in the coffin, the comic book industry has been dying slowly for the last 10 years
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11 Apr 2020 18:46 #67598 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?

Idylls wrote: Just want to say its odd.

Netflix's The Witcher significantly raised sales of 3 year old Witcher games. The novels they're based on 500+% (five hundred not a typo) increase in sales. If I have a console or PC I would have bought those games. And I'm currently searching for the novels.

Supergirl comics just got cancelled and how many #1's has Captain Marvel has had.? 

Just some perspective.


Is it possible that the focus for fantasy movies is going to shift from physically-superpowered heroes (Batman, Superman, Supergirl, Flash, Spiderman, Thor, Ms. Marvel etc.  to more magical characters, along with the traditional fantasy/horror elements of vampires, elves, werewolves, and monsters of various ilk? Some of the Witcher and related character concepts go back thousands of years. A lot of fears perhaps buried in our DNA that could make stories seem more powerful. 

One beauty of that is you can ignore all elements of current culture, politics and conventional reality and just dwell in a completely fantasy world. That might be a really nice escape. 

Whatever... one thing we do know is that the focus of Hollywood and TV producers changes with time. I remember when it was all Westerns and then spies and cops, then political and geo-political/cold war thrillers,  along with a few other things along the way, and now its become classic superheroes for a few years. 

What's next?

Shadar

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11 Apr 2020 19:18 #67602 by Idylls
Replied by Idylls on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
If anything the push is to have everything have a female lead. I'm sure everyone knows how I see Supergirl and Batwoman.

They will not make anything that ignores culture and politics because those are reason they are made. This is blatantly.ckear. From Ghostbusters, MiB to Terminator Dark Fate. From the upcoming James Bond, female "Thor" to the just announced Cliffhanger. 

Atleast that's what I heard from the marketing. Doesn't matter I'm not even interested. Haven't even seen the trailer for Black Widow.

Anyway I don't think there will be shift unless the upcoming MCU movies tank. I don't think anyone has an idea what works so they'll stick to what they know sells now. 

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11 Apr 2020 20:53 - 11 Apr 2020 20:54 #67605 by Monty
Replied by Monty on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
I think the internet has been the major cause in downturn in comic book sales from reputable stores. When I worked in my hometown city up until the early-mid 2000's there was a large comic store near my train station commute. It was good to pop in and buy on the way home. Their business was 'busy', maybe not booming. I worked away from the city for 15 years and when I returned to work there, the store was closed down and shuttered up. I did feel a sense of disappointment after all those years.
Last edit: 11 Apr 2020 20:54 by Monty.

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11 Apr 2020 23:58 - 12 Apr 2020 00:00 #67608 by kikass2014
Replied by kikass2014 on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
The pandemic, as has been mentioned, has merely accelerated the decline of the industry.

Idylls has the right of it be honest.  You just have to do a little research.

When you have people like Dan Slott shouting if you voted Trump, you can fuck off!, or Gerry Duggan telling fans to eat a bag of fried d**ks because they have a different point of view, then yes it is SJWs who caused this.

Or people like Gail Simone who is constantly moaning on Twitter, thinking she is still a teenage girl. Or Kelly Sue DeConnick, who openly has said "if you don't like my politics, don't buy my book".  Well fine Kelly, we won't.  Thats why Marvel is CONSTANTLY canceling and relaunching Capt. Marvel, because it fails every single time.

Dana Schwartz, who thinks schools should not stock any books written by WHITE MEN for the next twenty years. (and shes the dumb bitch who is tasked with writing the She-Hulk tv series.  Good luck with that).

I could go on, for example, look into ComicsGate and what happened to Ethan Van Sciver, and others.

DC and Marvel not accepting returns on comics sold, while pumping out unsellable garbage to these stores didn't help.  Gotham High, The New Warriors, fricking Vita Ayala's gender-swapped, race-swapped, X-men copy Children of the Atom or some shit like that.  There is nothing but total crap out there.  The people making mainstream comics have NO TALENT and were purely diversity hires (how many books has Ayala tanked for Marvel and they still give her books???).

"Vita Ayala is a queer Afro-Latinx writer out of New York City, where they live with their wife and cat sons." (from her comixology bio) Oh, thats why.

So, YES, it is SJW politics that has caused the downfall of MAINSTREAM comics.  And, I don't generally say this, but if you think otherwise, you are deluding yourself.

Mainstream is dead, but crowd-funded comics are going strong.  Ethan Van Sciver, after being insulted, mocked, and hounded out of the industry, has raised $1.9 million for his first TWO ISSUES alone.  His first book raised $1.2 million alone, making it the biggest crowd-funded comic in HISTORY.

#pencilsdown

Peace.

/K
Last edit: 12 Apr 2020 00:00 by kikass2014.
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12 Apr 2020 02:09 #67612 by Idylls
Replied by Idylls on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
Ethan Van Sciver is making more money now than he ever did in all his years working mainstream. 

I watched Richard Meyer (Ya boi Zack) every step to publish his own comics. Through all the ups and downs. And make more than enough to fund 2 additional comics. 

And there others more in Comicsgate.

Comics can be and is profitable. There is a market for them. The medium should be thriving; the independents are proof of that, having their comics funded. 

That the mainstream is in shambles, losing money, readers and retailers year after year... it's just stupid.

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12 Apr 2020 14:20 #67627 by erikphandel
Replied by erikphandel on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
Kikass and Idylls are absolutely right
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12 Apr 2020 14:32 #67628 by TwiceOnThursdays
Replied by TwiceOnThursdays on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
I know I'm going to be a wet blanket here, because everyone is saying the same thing.  But has anyone here actually looked at the numbers instead of just spouting off "common wisdom"?

Feel free to question anything in here, but I'm posting #'s and links and encourage you to actually question them. But I equally encourage you to question the story in your head.

Someone said comics have been dying for the last 10 years, so let's actually look at the sales #'s.

But first a history reality check.  Anyone know why Marvel made a shitty deal for FF, Spider-man, Hulk, and X-Men movie rights?  Oh, yeah.  It was almost bankrupt in the late 90's.  Marvel is not almost bankrupt now.

?!?  I thought comics were DYING. Yet a major publisher went from Bankrupt to ok.  The modern movie money goes to Disney not Marvel Comics.  The old movie money went to fund the next movies.  So no, the movies did not save Marvel Comics. In fact it was a great risk for them.

So they went from Bankrupt to.. not bankrupt. Comics were WORSE OFF IN THE LATE 90's. (Also a lot of the comics were shit.)  DC was having so many problems in the early 80's the considered licensing all the characters to Marvel. (It's what got Byrne dreaming of writing superman and when that deal was yanked away, and upset at how marvel treated him... that led him to DC to reboot Superman.)  The publishers have been in MUCH more dire straights in the past.  Thinking this is new is ignoring history.

I don't think I need to support the Marvel Assertion. EVERYONE should know why Marvel made their deals.  Here's a page that talks about DC:  geektyrant.com/news/2011/8/29/how-marvel...superman-batman.html

Let's look at the actual #'s now:

www.comichron.com/yearlycomicssales.html

2011 to 2018 the comics market grew $300M.  If I inflation adjust the 2011 #'s, it's 37% growth from 2011 to 2018.  While not awesome, its hardly dying.(2019 #'s are not in yet.)

"Comics Cost More"

In 2009 comics were 2.99 and 3.99.  Today they are 3.99.   2.99 in 2009 dollars in 2020 dollars is 3.55.  So yes, comics are more expensive, at $3.99 for all comics, but there were still 3.99 comics in 2009, meaning those comics were MORE expensive.  Most of these were not "special edition prestige formats" they were just more expensive.

www.in2013dollars.com/us/inflation/2010?amount=2.99

Let's prove that 2.99/3.99 number, and also look at Jan 2020.

www.comichron.com/monthlycomicssales/2009/2009-01.html
www.comichron.com/monthlycomicssales/2020/2020-01.html

Comics are 3.99 now ( a 12% increase after inflation adjustment) and a few are 4.99 and there is a $9.99 special edition WW 750. But these are prestige format books compared to the more normal books at 3.99 in 2009.  (One $3.99 book, Final Crisis was a prestige format with a better cover and paper. The others were not.)

So it's true comics cost about 12% more than in 2009, so it's not great, but people are talking like it's 33%+ more.  Just ain't true.And SOME WERE MORE EXPENSIVE. (3.99 2009 USD > $3.99 2020 USD).

And other than the super sales of Amazing Spider-Man #1, the sales #'s look comparable.  It's not 200K to 40k like a lot of people seem to think.

In Jan 2009 the #30 comic sold 46k, in Jan 2020 it sold 44k.
#10 to #10: 70k to 56k. So you do see a drop off in the top 10, but there is a long tail.  There were 300 comics on the list in 2009, and 500 in  2020.  So there are more comics fighting for the dollars, and the top 10 suffer for it, but sales are up.   (And yes this puts stress on local stores.)

I'll also make an aside.  Ethan Van Scriver got a super mega hit and made $1.2 Million on Kickstarter.  This is indeed awesome.  And it means he (personally) is making a crapton of money (or should be).  It's far less than a $1.2M as he has to pay kickstarter, print books, and mail them, but it's still a lot of money. Because this has always been true when you work independently: greater risk, but you keep all the reward. This is old news, Dave Sim went over all this decades ago.

The big trick in the modern day is that you can use Kickstarter to collect money up front, and you don't have to assume financial risk.  That's freaking awesome. I don't think this makes anyone doing it a genius though, it's just a different world ... AND the people doing it literally CAN'T get their comics into stores, so they're doing the only thing they can do (self publish in small #'s and get the comic onto Comixology).  SOME even build on that and get the comic into stores, but... it's also a TINY market.  And I mean that. TINY.

To put this into perspective, a comic that comicsgaters like to make fun of, Ms. Marvel, pulls in about $1.6M/year.  That's a rough #, but I looked the monthly sales were roughly the same so Took (comics sales x cost + GN sales x Cost) x 12. I could have just done all the math and figured it all out, but I was just looking or a ballpark #.

This number DOES NOT include digital sales,  foreign sales,  GN sales to the book market (including Amazon) or the sales to Scholastic (sales done to schools, this market isn't small, and it's why Raina Telemeier outsells anyone else).  So I want to stress this is a LOW END #.

And lastly, it absolutely does not include merchandise sales.  In Short, that's a LOT of Ms. Marvel money sitting on the table that isn't in that #.

Whereas I'm pretty sure the kickstarter is most of Ethan's sales.  He doesn't have an online store (anymore? he used to?) Looks like he sells on ebay now.  No way to judge what that is, and i'm not gonna scrape twitter or You Tube to find out. If someone knows ... please point us at it.

Now, that $$ for Ms. marvel is split to Marvel, Diamond, comic book stores, and a small pitiance goes to the creators.  ("Sharecroppers" as Dave Sim calls them.)   Ethan subtracts his overhead costs and takes home the rest, so he's doing far better than he ever was working for DC/Marvel. (Again, old news, It's also why almost all creators end up doing their own books at some point.)

But let's not fool ourselves into think that market is even a fraction of the size of the normal comics market, in $$ or sales #. Comicsgates darlings make like 10 comics/year vs 100's/Month.  It's not knocking them, far from it. They are personally doing VERY WELL.   But their annual sales $ figures are merely average.  People seem to be making an argument that $$ == popularity ... uh... not a winning argument. Ms. Marvel generates more than Ethan does, and it's just an average title.  She sells more copies a month than is kickstarters.

If Ethan could make 12 issues a year instead of 2 (generous), then we might be able to find out if the market was actually there to sustain that or not.  But he's not, so it means he likely can not create that much.    Which is fine, it's HARD to do it all by yourself.  Though other people have done it and still do it.  Terry Moore manages to put out monthly comics and has for a very very long time.  (Ethan makes more than Moore does, though I don't know how many direct sales versions Moore sells, he's got a nice store.)

My point being is that the comicsgate market is TINY.  It's a few million to $1 Billion.

It is however perfectly suited to weather the current crisis fairly well.  No overhead, comics are pre-paid for before printing, and no worries about a third party shutting down.  That's not a small thing.

OTH, it would mean I'd get like 20 comics a year from the kickstarter market, and .. shit I get more than that a week.  Like I said: TINY.

So I am not downplaying what Ethan is doing... but it's a poor substitute for the comics market.  But if you don't like Modern comics, I guess that's no loss.  But some of them (even from DC and Marvel) are pretty damn awesome.

As for some of the other things I've heard in the thread that I think are also logically suspect?

Now, what do you think Ethan says to "a comics fan" who tells him that he needs to write his comics in a different way?  Does he say "oh, man, mr. customer you are totally right. I'll change and do what you want?"

Or, does he think "If you don't like what I'm doing, do not buy my book then."

If anyone thinks it's #1  .... well .... I think you might have a reality problem.

The only difference is that Kelly Sue is HONEST and says that shit out loud.  I'm really surprised that one single creative person reads what she says and thinks it's some horrible thing.   I mean I get fans getting upset who have no clue, but that's how the world works.  And honestly, a fan SHOULD know that too.  But frankly, if you're upset by what she says, there IS a word for you.  S-N-O-W-F-L-A-K-E.   And yes, not buying her book is EXACTLY what she wants. She making her books to sell to the people she thinks likes it, changing them targets a market that she doesn't want to be.

Ethan wants you to not buy his book too rather than change it into something he doesn't want it to be.  Now, he'd like to NOT turn you off and get you to spend money AND not change his book, but if it's "Get Fan's Money OR change book"... he's not going to pick #1 as he's writing the book for the 10k fans who want what he's making.

But seriously ANY creator will say this.  If they don't, they're lying to themselves.  The only difference is they might be nicer in how they phrase it ...but she's merely stating a basic truth.  So she's an asshole. So's Ethan. ;-)

(Similarly, I think the "Customer Service" analogy is ... simplistic and stupid.  And honestly I can tear into that one too, but this is already too long.)

If you think Ethan's politics don't make it into his books ... well I've not read Cyberfrog, but I'd be really surprised if that was true. Because art is either brainless fun (no harm in that) or it says something. If it says something...it's going to have the creators veiwpoint in it.  And if you don't like it, don't buy it.

That's ALWAYS been true.  And comics, esp Marvel comics, have ALWAYS had politics in them.

And let me take a moment to directly address something kikass and Idylls said, which is also "common knowledge", as I have heard repeated before... that is that Captain Marvel was reset due to poor sales.  I'm sorry, I just do not agree.  And you both stated this thing that IS NOT TRUE, so I am wondering where it comes from.  I guess lots of people believe things that are not true so... meh.

I'm reorganizing my comics so I deal with this A LOT.  And that's how I know that the statement is poppycock.  Marvel restarts series ALL THE TIME.  It's a disease with them.

Amazing Spider-Man: 3 volumes since 2006

Captain Marvel: 4 (shorter timeframe, yes), so 5 if you wanted to add the old Ms. Marvel title in and the swap to Captain Marvel on the name change.   (I am ignoring captain marvel and the carol corps as it was an event book.)  But ... there wasn't always an Amazing Spider-man either.

X-Men:  5  It's hard to track as they kept changing the main title from X-Men, to Uncanny X-Men,  And at one point both X-Men and Uncanny X-Men were overlapping.  But I think it's fair to count this as one and say "5-6".  (It's 3 each, with a period that there were two out at the same time, so "5" is fair.)

Iron Man: 2, Invincible Iron Man: 3 (total 5, they weren't concurrent).
Avengers (main title): 4

My point is that 4 is maybe a bit high.. .but it's not out of line with other books-- particularly the [Uncanny] X-Men and Avengers which didn't have any sales problems.  If you are claiming X happens due to Y, and X happens to something that doesn't have Y....well, I'm going to posit that your theory is incorrect.

Captain Marvel sales _might_ have been bad, I'm not even checking.  Because I don't have to.  I proved that 4 volumes/number changes for a Marvel book in the given time frame happens even with good sales.... so the premise is flawed.

If you don't have way too many comics, I get not knowing this ... but it just doesn't jive with reality.

Now, not liking modern comics.  Hell, that's a personal thing. I just happen to find a LOT of comics I enjoy.  SO I don't know what people's problems are, nor does it matter. (Like what you like, complain about what you want to complain about.)

And I'm not as old as some here, but I'm older than others.  I remember how shitty 90's comics were from Marvel.  Today's comics are LOADS better.

Oh and the publishing industry is having problems (mass market books were canceled).  The magazine industry is having problems.  newspapers are having problems.  All due to Covid-19.  All have STRONG markets still open.  Comics don't. So I think blaming SJW's for the current COVID-19 problems is sloppy thinking.

Hell AMC filed for bankruptcy!

Now DC and Marvel not accepting returns and that killing the comic book direct market?  Yes, right on the money. 

but, that's a BUSINESS decision and has ZERO to do with the SJW rants.  There have ALWAYS been bad books.  Focusing on one source of them, and then blaming issues caused by business decisions ... it's the tail wagging the dog.   And yes, the current industry RELIES upon the stores and TREATS THEM LIKE DIRT.  But that's all true with/without SJW rants.

So recap: Comic sales are up 37% since 2011 and the largest problem facing stores is a business decision by DC and Marvel that screws them blind... but if I don't believe that SJW are killing comics I'm deluded?   Sorry, I'm going with facts and not emotional responses because I'm uhinged by some comics (two of the comics kickass2014 ranted about HAVE NOT BEEN RELEASED... so "unhinged" when you rant about future comics that BY DEFINITION can't be the cause of a past problem as they are not out yet.  A symptom of something current maybe ... but... _not out yet_ == 'not part of the current problem'.

Also Idylss mentioned, "female Thor"... which was a fantastic comic(s). AND, she's now the new Valkyrie and it's pretty great too.   Really great story esp when coupled with the fall of "Odinson" and his path to redemption. Not quite "Demon In the bottle" but ... pretty great overall.  If you have Marvel Unlimited I recommend reading them.

Also, some creators who make (charitably) 20 comics a year are the future and I should be happy with that.  Whatever.   And honestly, I love supporting Kickstarter comics! But.. I need more than that!! But props to anyone who makes a comic!

Now, the industry MIGHT collapse, but ... this article doesn't actually say that.   And, sadly if it does it'll be due to the stores as small businesses failing for being shuttered for months NOT SJW comics.  Comic Book stores are NOT the only small business failing. Thinking otherwise is well... deluded.

Feel free to actually find information and not anedotes to change my mind.    Also, maybe a bit less ranting. ;-)  There was a lot of gish gallop .... and I get that some HATE SJW comics and therefore blame them for EVERYTHING.  It's just a bit...unreasonable.

BTw, not all current writers are hacks and not all current comics are shit.  For instance, Immortal Hulk is just now starting to drag, but it started out ON FIRE.  The new spider-woman was pretty good (I didn't like the new costume).  Frankly,Jimmy Olson is pretty silly fun.  (etc).  Those are all recent and I didn't think very hard.




























 
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12 Apr 2020 16:07 - 12 Apr 2020 16:09 #67634 by lfan
Replied by lfan on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
Thanks for communicating several points that I, quite honestly, was too lazy to research and point out, ToT!  I agree in the SJW = injecting politics thing. Politics has been embedded into plots for YEARS in comics and to say it's just started and has created a downfall is myopic. 

As for Dan Slott (who I cant stand BTW) and Kelly DeConnick spouting their politics off on twitter as an example?  C'mon!  That is happening in everything these days......actors, artists, musicians, writers, etc.  Twitter has given EVERYONE a voice and they use it.  For full disclosure, I don't necessarily agree with it and frankly I think twitter is one of the stupidest things in the world whose primary purpose is to say "look at me", but it's undeniable it's a part of our culture for better or for worse. 

Integrating things into society (politics, social change, social issues) is part of comics.  Imitating real life situations is one of the main premises in entertainment.  I mean, movie and TV copy real life situations for their plots all the time.  Law & Order even says "Ripped from today's headlines".  So I don't understand how you can say that having gay or trans characters or heroes is SJWing.  It's representative of today's society.  Of all the hundreds of characters, there are maybe a couple of handfuls (now) that are LGBTQ.  Hardly forcing it down our throat.... if you don't like the subject matter, don't read it....

As far as the Afro-Latinx, nonbinary elephant in the room, they are writing what they knows best.  They are  also probably -- let's not kid ourselves -- hired to write what they know best. That being said, i do NOT agree with giving them chance after chance of cratering books. They might be failing cause of the polarizing subject matter but chances are they're polarizing cause they suck.  Knowing more than a few close people that are trans whose opinions I value, their first reaction to the new  New Warriors was not one of pride or "yay, we're finally represented", it was "WTF?!?!  this is stupid and pandering!"  I have no problem with trans representation in comics, just do do it well!

ToT brings up the great point that the comics figures often never include online sales.  Once small, I would imagine this market is huge now.  Speaking from my own experience, I ditched physical comic collecting a few years ago, but routinely visit Comixology every Wed.  The comics business isn't necessarily changing, just adapting.  Frankly, I think the movie and theatre industries are gonna be shaken up more by this stuff than comics when the dust settles.

Also, ToT......just for clarification, when you were spouting stats for Ms. Marvel, did you mean Captain Marvel which they referenced?  Just asking as it's SO confusing these days for me with the names (Carol will ALWAYS be Ms Marvel to me)

ElF

TwiceOnThursdays wrote: I know I'm going to be a wet blanket here, because everyone is saying the same thing.  But has anyone here actually looked at the numbers instead of just spouting off "common wisdom"?

Feel free to question anything in here, but I'm posting #'s and links and encourage you to actually question them. But I equally encourage you to question the story in your head.

Someone said comics have been dying for the last 10 years, so let's actually look at the sales #'s.

But first a history reality check.  Anyone know why Marvel made a shitty deal for FF, Spider-man, Hulk, and X-Men movie rights?  Oh, yeah.  It was almost bankrupt in the late 90's.  Marvel is not almost bankrupt now.

?!?  I thought comics were DYING. Yet a major publisher went from Bankrupt to ok.  The modern movie money goes to Disney not Marvel Comics.  The old movie money went to fund the next movies.  So no, the movies did not save Marvel Comics. In fact it was a great risk for them.

So they went from Bankrupt to.. not bankrupt. Comics were WORSE OFF IN THE LATE 90's. (Also a lot of the comics were shit.)  DC was having so many problems in the early 80's the considered licensing all the characters to Marvel. (It's what got Byrne dreaming of writing superman and when that deal was yanked away, and upset at how marvel treated him... that led him to DC to reboot Superman.)  The publishers have been in MUCH more dire straights in the past.  Thinking this is new is ignoring history.

I don't think I need to support the Marvel Assertion. EVERYONE should know why Marvel made their deals.  Here's a page that talks about DC:  geektyrant.com/news/2011/8/29/how-marvel...superman-batman.html

Let's look at the actual #'s now:

www.comichron.com/yearlycomicssales.html

2011 to 2018 the comics market grew $300M.  If I inflation adjust the 2011 #'s, it's 37% growth from 2011 to 2018.  While not awesome, its hardly dying.(2019 #'s are not in yet.)

"Comics Cost More"

In 2009 comics were 2.99 and 3.99.  Today they are 3.99.   2.99 in 2009 dollars in 2020 dollars is 3.55.  So yes, comics are more expensive, at $3.99 for all comics, but there were still 3.99 comics in 2009, meaning those comics were MORE expensive.  Most of these were not "special edition prestige formats" they were just more expensive.

www.in2013dollars.com/us/inflation/2010?amount=2.99

Let's prove that 2.99/3.99 number, and also look at Jan 2020.

www.comichron.com/monthlycomicssales/2009/2009-01.html
www.comichron.com/monthlycomicssales/2020/2020-01.html

Comics are 3.99 now ( a 12% increase after inflation adjustment) and a few are 4.99 and there is a $9.99 special edition WW 750. But these are prestige format books compared to the more normal books at 3.99 in 2009.  (One $3.99 book, Final Crisis was a prestige format with a better cover and paper. The others were not.)

So it's true comics cost about 12% more than in 2009, so it's not great, but people are talking like it's 33%+ more.  Just ain't true.And SOME WERE MORE EXPENSIVE. (3.99 2009 USD > $3.99 2020 USD).

And other than the super sales of Amazing Spider-Man #1, the sales #'s look comparable.  It's not 200K to 40k like a lot of people seem to think.

In Jan 2009 the #30 comic sold 46k, in Jan 2020 it sold 44k.
#10 to #10: 70k to 56k. So you do see a drop off in the top 10, but there is a long tail.  There were 300 comics on the list in 2009, and 500 in  2020.  So there are more comics fighting for the dollars, and the top 10 suffer for it, but sales are up.   (And yes this puts stress on local stores.)

I'll also make an aside.  Ethan Van Scriver got a super mega hit and made $1.2 Million on Kickstarter.  This is indeed awesome.  And it means he (personally) is making a crapton of money (or should be).  It's far less than a $1.2M as he has to pay kickstarter, print books, and mail them, but it's still a lot of money. Because this has always been true when you work independently: greater risk, but you keep all the reward. This is old news, Dave Sim went over all this decades ago.

The big trick in the modern day is that you can use Kickstarter to collect money up front, and you don't have to assume financial risk.  That's freaking awesome. I don't think this makes anyone doing it a genius though, it's just a different world ... AND the people doing it literally CAN'T get their comics into stores, so they're doing the only thing they can do (self publish in small #'s and get the comic onto Comixology).  SOME even build on that and get the comic into stores, but... it's also a TINY market.  And I mean that. TINY.

To put this into perspective, a comic that comicsgaters like to make fun of, Ms. Marvel, pulls in about $1.6M/year.  That's a rough #, but I looked the monthly sales were roughly the same so Took (comics sales x cost + GN sales x Cost) x 12. I could have just done all the math and figured it all out, but I was just looking or a ballpark #.

This number DOES NOT include digital sales,  foreign sales,  GN sales to the book market (including Amazon) or the sales to Scholastic (sales done to schools, this market isn't small, and it's why Raina Telemeier outsells anyone else).  So I want to stress this is a LOW END #.

And lastly, it absolutely does not include merchandise sales.  In Short, that's a LOT of Ms. Marvel money sitting on the table that isn't in that #.

Whereas I'm pretty sure the kickstarter is most of Ethan's sales.  He doesn't have an online store (anymore? he used to?) Looks like he sells on ebay now.  No way to judge what that is, and i'm not gonna scrape twitter or You Tube to find out. If someone knows ... please point us at it.

Now, that $$ for Ms. marvel is split to Marvel, Diamond, comic book stores, and a small pitiance goes to the creators.  ("Sharecroppers" as Dave Sim calls them.)   Ethan subtracts his overhead costs and takes home the rest, so he's doing far better than he ever was working for DC/Marvel. (Again, old news, It's also why almost all creators end up doing their own books at some point.)

But let's not fool ourselves into think that market is even a fraction of the size of the normal comics market, in $$ or sales #. Comicsgates darlings make like 10 comics/year vs 100's/Month.  It's not knocking them, far from it. They are personally doing VERY WELL.   But their annual sales $ figures are merely average.  People seem to be making an argument that $$ == popularity ... uh... not a winning argument. Ms. Marvel generates more than Ethan does, and it's just an average title.  She sells more copies a month than is kickstarters.

If Ethan could make 12 issues a year instead of 2 (generous), then we might be able to find out if the market was actually there to sustain that or not.  But he's not, so it means he likely can not create that much.    Which is fine, it's HARD to do it all by yourself.  Though other people have done it and still do it.  Terry Moore manages to put out monthly comics and has for a very very long time.  (Ethan makes more than Moore does, though I don't know how many direct sales versions Moore sells, he's got a nice store.)

My point being is that the comicsgate market is TINY.  It's a few million to $1 Billion.

It is however perfectly suited to weather the current crisis fairly well.  No overhead, comics are pre-paid for before printing, and no worries about a third party shutting down.  That's not a small thing.

OTH, it would mean I'd get like 20 comics a year from the kickstarter market, and .. shit I get more than that a week.  Like I said: TINY.

So I am not downplaying what Ethan is doing... but it's a poor substitute for the comics market.  But if you don't like Modern comics, I guess that's no loss.  But some of them (even from DC and Marvel) are pretty damn awesome.

As for some of the other things I've heard in the thread that I think are also logically suspect?

Now, what do you think Ethan says to "a comics fan" who tells him that he needs to write his comics in a different way?  Does he say "oh, man, mr. customer you are totally right. I'll change and do what you want?"

Or, does he think "If you don't like what I'm doing, do not buy my book then."

If anyone thinks it's #1  .... well .... I think you might have a reality problem.

The only difference is that Kelly Sue is HONEST and says that shit out loud.  I'm really surprised that one single creative person reads what she says and thinks it's some horrible thing.   I mean I get fans getting upset who have no clue, but that's how the world works.  And honestly, a fan SHOULD know that too.  But frankly, if you're upset by what she says, there IS a word for you.  S-N-O-W-F-L-A-K-E.   And yes, not buying her book is EXACTLY what she wants. She making her books to sell to the people she thinks likes it, changing them targets a market that she doesn't want to be.

Ethan wants you to not buy his book too rather than change it into something he doesn't want it to be.  Now, he'd like to NOT turn you off and get you to spend money AND not change his book, but if it's "Get Fan's Money OR change book"... he's not going to pick #1 as he's writing the book for the 10k fans who want what he's making.

But seriously ANY creator will say this.  If they don't, they're lying to themselves.  The only difference is they might be nicer in how they phrase it ...but she's merely stating a basic truth.  So she's an asshole. So's Ethan. ;-)

(Similarly, I think the "Customer Service" analogy is ... simplistic and stupid.  And honestly I can tear into that one too, but this is already too long.)

If you think Ethan's politics don't make it into his books ... well I've not read Cyberfrog, but I'd be really surprised if that was true. Because art is either brainless fun (no harm in that) or it says something. If it says something...it's going to have the creators veiwpoint in it.  And if you don't like it, don't buy it.

That's ALWAYS been true.  And comics, esp Marvel comics, have ALWAYS had politics in them.

And let me take a moment to directly address something kikass and Idylls said, which is also "common knowledge", as I have heard repeated before... that is that Captain Marvel was reset due to poor sales.  I'm sorry, I just do not agree.  And you both stated this thing that IS NOT TRUE, so I am wondering where it comes from.  I guess lots of people believe things that are not true so... meh.

I'm reorganizing my comics so I deal with this A LOT.  And that's how I know that the statement is poppycock.  Marvel restarts series ALL THE TIME.  It's a disease with them.

Amazing Spider-Man: 3 volumes since 2006

Captain Marvel: 4 (shorter timeframe, yes), so 5 if you wanted to add the old Ms. Marvel title in and the swap to Captain Marvel on the name change.   (I am ignoring captain marvel and the carol corps as it was an event book.)  But ... there wasn't always an Amazing Spider-man either.

X-Men:  5  It's hard to track as they kept changing the main title from X-Men, to Uncanny X-Men,  And at one point both X-Men and Uncanny X-Men were overlapping.  But I think it's fair to count this as one and say "5-6".  (It's 3 each, with a period that there were two out at the same time, so "5" is fair.)

Iron Man: 2, Invincible Iron Man: 3 (total 5, they weren't concurrent).
Avengers (main title): 4

My point is that 4 is maybe a bit high.. .but it's not out of line with other books-- particularly the [Uncanny] X-Men and Avengers which didn't have any sales problems.  If you are claiming X happens due to Y, and X happens to something that doesn't have Y....well, I'm going to posit that your theory is incorrect.

Captain Marvel sales _might_ have been bad, I'm not even checking.  Because I don't have to.  I proved that 4 volumes/number changes for a Marvel book in the given time frame happens even with good sales.... so the premise is flawed.

If you don't have way too many comics, I get not knowing this ... but it just doesn't jive with reality.

Now, not liking modern comics.  Hell, that's a personal thing. I just happen to find a LOT of comics I enjoy.  SO I don't know what people's problems are, nor does it matter. (Like what you like, complain about what you want to complain about.)

And I'm not as old as some here, but I'm older than others.  I remember how shitty 90's comics were from Marvel.  Today's comics are LOADS better.

Oh and the publishing industry is having problems (mass market books were canceled).  The magazine industry is having problems.  newspapers are having problems.  All due to Covid-19.  All have STRONG markets still open.  Comics don't. So I think blaming SJW's for the current COVID-19 problems is sloppy thinking.

Hell AMC filed for bankruptcy!

Now DC and Marvel not accepting returns and that killing the comic book direct market?  Yes, right on the money. 

but, that's a BUSINESS decision and has ZERO to do with the SJW rants.  There have ALWAYS been bad books.  Focusing on one source of them, and then blaming issues caused by business decisions ... it's the tail wagging the dog.   And yes, the current industry RELIES upon the stores and TREATS THEM LIKE DIRT.  But that's all true with/without SJW rants.

So recap: Comic sales are up 37% since 2011 and the largest problem facing stores is a business decision by DC and Marvel that screws them blind... but if I don't believe that SJW are killing comics I'm deluded?   Sorry, I'm going with facts and not emotional responses because I'm uhinged by some comics (two of the comics kickass2014 ranted about HAVE NOT BEEN RELEASED... so "unhinged" when you rant about future comics that BY DEFINITION can't be the cause of a past problem as they are not out yet.  A symptom of something current maybe ... but... _not out yet_ == 'not part of the current problem'.

Also Idylss mentioned, "female Thor"... which was a fantastic comic(s). AND, she's now the new Valkyrie and it's pretty great too.   Really great story esp when coupled with the fall of "Odinson" and his path to redemption. Not quite "Demon In the bottle" but ... pretty great overall.  If you have Marvel Unlimited I recommend reading them.

Also, some creators who make (charitably) 20 comics a year are the future and I should be happy with that.  Whatever.   And honestly, I love supporting Kickstarter comics! But.. I need more than that!! But props to anyone who makes a comic!

Now, the industry MIGHT collapse, but ... this article doesn't actually say that.   And, sadly if it does it'll be due to the stores as small businesses failing for being shuttered for months NOT SJW comics.  Comic Book stores are NOT the only small business failing. Thinking otherwise is well... deluded.

Feel free to actually find information and not anedotes to change my mind.    Also, maybe a bit less ranting. ;-)  There was a lot of gish gallop .... and I get that some HATE SJW comics and therefore blame them for EVERYTHING.  It's just a bit...unreasonable.

BTw, not all current writers are hacks and not all current comics are shit.  For instance, Immortal Hulk is just now starting to drag, but it started out ON FIRE.  The new spider-woman was pretty good (I didn't like the new costume).  Frankly,Jimmy Olson is pretty silly fun.  (etc).  Those are all recent and I didn't think very hard.




























 

Last edit: 12 Apr 2020 16:09 by lfan.

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12 Apr 2020 19:52 - 12 Apr 2020 21:38 #67637 by kikass2014
Replied by kikass2014 on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
Oh, well ok then.

Mainstream comics are just fine then cause "numbers".

Hey, if you think the industry is fine, go right ahead.  Keep reading your "Gotham High" and the latest Vita Ayala "epic".

Nothing to see here, move along.

But, HAHAHAHA I just love a writer who has been GIFTED the She-Hulk TV series (who has no comic industry experiance btw), telling ME that schools should not stock ANY books by WHITE MALES, for the next 20 years.

Of a man who is a PROFESIONAL and thus represents his employer, telling people to go FUCK OFF cause they voted differently to him.  Nevermind that 50%!!! of the country voted for him as well.  So what are you saying Dan?  50% of your potential CUSTOMERS can fuck off??  Ok.

SJW politics has been injected EVERYWHERE over the last few years. Not denying that.  Thats why this is just an acceleration of something that was bound to happen.

FANS and thus CUSTOMERS have....had......enough.

But hey, if you like being thought of as shit by these "professionals" in the industry, carry on bending over and taking it.  A LOT of people have had enough.,

Diamond, the sole distributor of mainstream comics, is most likely never opening its doors again.  This is from people in the industry.

And to those who think ONLINE comics are the savior, if they were, it would have happened by now.  They have been around for a while now.  Online comic sales account for about 10% of the market or so.

REAL COMIC FANS are collectors, they want tangible art.

Not gonna go on, because frankly, I think those that don't see whats going on, don't want to.

So carry on and enjoy your shit.

Peace.

/K
Last edit: 12 Apr 2020 21:38 by kikass2014.
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12 Apr 2020 20:00 #67638 by TwiceOnThursdays
Replied by TwiceOnThursdays on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?

lfan wrote: Also, ToT......just for clarification, when you were spouting stats for Ms. Marvel, did you mean Captain Marvel which they referenced?  Just asking as it's SO confusing these days for me with the names (Carol will ALWAYS be Ms Marvel to me)

ElF


Sorry, I see the confusion.

For the titles count, I used Captain Marvel (Carol Danvers). Her title change was DIRECTLY referenced by two people, so I wanted to show that "this was normal for Marvel during this timeframe". (And i mentioned you might need to include Ms. Marvel Vol 2 due to Carol's name change).

For sales I looked at Ms. Marvel (Kamala Kahn). I did this as I had ALREADY done this for someone on Reddit last month, so I didn't want to spend the time to do it again (or do it 100% correctly). I have heard a lot of comicsgate people rag on her character and use her as proof the industry is sick and talk about the bad sales of her book. (When in fact she's the top character of the last 10 years.)

I mentioned HOW I calculated it, was lazy and bored THEN, and going through 12 months and pulling sales of multiple comics and TPBs is annoying.

So I picked her as a boring average title, just to reality check what "a million dollars" looks like in the comic book industry. I picked her as someone was doing this exact thing, comparing Ethan's one kickstarter of over $1M to "the poor sales of Ms. Marvel". She sells more comics in a month than Ethan sells in a year. Ethan just takes in more money with variant covers and higher prices on his Kickstarter. Since one of the complaints is "the high price of comics" from comicgate ... when a beat later they crow about Ethan's numbers... it's sort of mind boggling.

but, like Lfan, I am also upset by some "SJW" targets too. But generlaly i stay away from that. If I don't like a book I don't buy and I don't talk about it much. And my general advice to ALL of comicsgate is to do exactly that. Forget about all the people you hate, and focus on the stuff you like.

I also tend to not spend too much time on previews (other than when I order so I only barely pay atention to the comic news sites)... so I mostly only have been tracking the outrage over the Children of the Atom and the New Warriors. BUT, i'll also say shitty named characters are OLD HAT as are bad ones. Old as time. PLUS -- not one of the people complaining have read the book just a press release. I made a resolution to NOT get worked up about any piece of art until I could actually SEE IT. So, while I think I agree with everyone -- everyone sounds like a rabid dog to me because they are obsessing way too much about something they've not seen or read. (the character names are pretty shitty.)

Now my resolution DOES NOT include "I must then go out and buy it to make a determination if I like it or not". No one owns my time and focus and I get to spend it how I like. And that might mean making unfair judgements about materials as i just don't have time.

I'll make another point.

Idylls mentioned the sales bump in video games and book sales due to the Witcher TV Show On Netflix.

Of note is the '500% increase". This is from "old book not selling anything" .....to getting a bump due to being in some other media. MOST novels sell over 80% of their LIFETIME sales in the first year (and the bulk of that is in the first six months). A movie/tv show changes that. This means that a decade old book's sales are ... pretty small. (I am not going to source this claim, but ... google Eric FLint as he has a long posts on the web somewhere about this topic. He's also pretty right wing so you aren't going to get some liberal hippy viewpoint from him. Just in case you discount "SJW" sources.)

And yes, it was a BIG bump. But it was likely from "100 copies" to 50k copies. (They printed a half million new books in total across the entire series.)

Why don't you see that in comic sales for movies?

I've not actually looked at this problem. But if you remember...there are some holes in the Chomichron data:

- foreign sales
- bookstores
- digital sales
- scholastic market

It's VERY likely that "increased sales" for comic books would be Trade Paperback sales from bookstores and the scholastic market where the books are readily available, rather than expensive monthly titles.

In particular the Witcher book that took off is one of short stories that closely aligned with the movie. So ... likely people pick up trades of the comics that align with the movies.

But, I've not seen anyone actually crunch those numbers. And this looks like a hard task, and I also do not know of a good way to get at the numbers. I will probably have to figure that out at some point and take a look. I just haven't yet. (* nor do I suspect has anyone else that is mentioning this.)

It IS true that it doesn't seem to help the monthly titles. DC is NOTORIOUSLY bad about it. When the supergirl tv show came out THERE WASN'T EVEN A SUPERGIRL TITLE. AND, the supergirl Trade Paper backs were OUT OF PRINT.

That's just STUPID.

So why wasn't there a sales bump for the Supergirl TV Show? uh.. because there COULD NOT BE.

OTH, Marvel floods the market with titles now around movie releases. New TPBs, new titles, etc. It's acutally annoying. The market is FLOODED with new Black Widow trades right now. Too many of them. I can't keep up. Since marvel does this all the time, I'm going out on a limb and say "it's becasue it pays off". (i.e. Black Panther has a lot of stuff before and after his movie...etc.)

But, that's also absolutely NOT SJW comics causing a problem. That's something inherent in the comics market and a disconnect to sell to new users. This is 20+ years old though. OTH, Ms. Marvel is part of the wave that IS selling new comics to young readers. (I have several anecdotals bits of evidence to this effect, though I've not seen anyone do a real demographic breakdown of WHO is buying Ms. Marvel.) DC has entire GN imprints aimed at kids. THere are like 10 books now I think. (I should check to see how they are doing.)

I also don't think that Superigrl was entirely cancled due to sales -- DC is keeping around shit books with worse sales. More likely, due to Bendis they want to reboot her title and are shutting it down while they do that. I will charitably say that it wasn't very good and hasn't been for awhile... and the last story arc of DC Infected .. ug. I HATE IT. ( I think almost all of the Metal related stuff is dumb.)

Also, incresed sales/demand of USED comics ARE NOT tracked by this. i can attest the market goes crazy when a tv show or movie is announced and again when it's released.

So, meh. I've not looked at TPB sales in relation to movie releases, but I'll also wager that no one else outside of Marvel/DC has either. This is very much a complex topic and if it's "SJW comix cause this" ... uh. No. I might be a broken record here but it's more complex than that.










































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12 Apr 2020 20:18 #67640 by kikass2014
Replied by kikass2014 on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
Just one quick thing I remembered.

You know those "sales" numbers, are comics "shipped" by Diamond?

And because DC and Marvel do NOT accept returns on any of their titles, they count as "sold".

So yeah, might want to rethink those numbers.  Just because a title SHIPS X, doesn't mean it SELLS X.   Just ask all the comic stores who have tons of unsold comics they can't sell.

IF Marvel and DC had any faith in their books, they would say to comic store owners they can return any unsold copies.

Wonder what the "numbers" you dug up will look like then?

Peace.

/K
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12 Apr 2020 20:32 #67641 by lfan
Replied by lfan on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
 
good point about the returns. I DO agree that the powerhouse publishers churn out way too many books which probably contributes to the bloated inventory orders.  Any “reputable” shop needs to have every new release available on Wednesdays.  And while I don’t know this for sure, I would imagine there is a minimal order. As such, I would think stores are forced to eat those books that don’t sell.  Most the most ardent fans of X-men probably have limited disposable income and prob can’t buy all 93 monthly X books and crossovers they put out.  Oversaturation and greed from the companies are just as big a factor.   Again though, this isn’t new to try and do quick cash grabs on shaky premises. How else would you explain Roadhouse 2? :p

elf


kikass2014 wrote: Just one quick thing I remembered.

You know those "sales" numbers, are comics "shipped" by Diamond?

And because DC and Marvel do NOT accept returns on any of their titles, they count as "sold".

So yeah, might want to rethink those numbers.  Just because a title SHIPS X, doesn't mean it SELLS X.   Just ask all the comic stores who have tons of unsold comics they can't sell.

IF Marvel and DC had any faith in their books, they would say to comic store owners they can return any unsold copies.

Wonder what the "numbers" you dug up will look like then?

Peace.

/K

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12 Apr 2020 20:53 - 12 Apr 2020 21:10 #67642 by lfan
Replied by lfan on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?

kikass2014 wrote: Of a man who is a PROFESIONAL and thus represents his employer, telling people to go FUCK OFF cause they voted differently to him.  Nevermind that 50%!!! of the country voted for him as well.  So what are you saying Dan?  50% of your potential CUSTOMERS can fuck off??  Ok.

SJW politics has been injected EVERYWHERE over the last few years. Not denying that.  Thats why this is just an acceleration of something that was bound to happen.

FANS and thus CUSTOMERS have....had......enough.

But hey, if you like being though of as shit by these "professionals" in the industry, carry on bending over and taking it.  A LOT of people have had enough.,


Believe me, the opinion of what someone thinks of my general politics on TWITTER has zero bearing on my actions or shopping tendencies.  Bending over and taking it?  Umm, I think you are giving them wayyyyyyyy too much credit.  I don't give two fucks about what Gerry Duggan (whoever the fuck that is), Aston Kutcher, Kanye, Trump, Natalie Maines or anyone says on twitter.  To borrow a classic line from Idylss:  it's stupid.  But hey, that's me.

That said, I actually agree 100% with a couple of your comments though.  If I was the EIC of whoever Gerry Duggan writes for, he'd be gone if he told potentially half my audience to eff off.

ElF
Last edit: 12 Apr 2020 21:10 by lfan.
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12 Apr 2020 20:58 #67643 by TwiceOnThursdays
Replied by TwiceOnThursdays on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?

kikass2014 wrote: Oh, well ok then.

Mainstream comics are just fine then cause "numbers".


Comics are not doing fine due to the problems with stores and a problem in getting new readers (the demographic keeps aging up).  this later is a LONGSTANDING problem.

BUT, I knew this would happen.  The numbers (based on reality) do not agree with the story in your head, so you are going to deny reality.  Instead of actually thinking about anything I said, you will instead go on a rant about what some creators have said to prove your point in a giant rant/gish gallop.  Anedotes. Emotion.  Not data. 

NO ONE knows if Diamond will reopen or not.  BTW, please list the industry professionals that say this.  Then we can decide if they actually have information to actually say that?  Since your sources have said two things apparently:

- sales of comics are down 
- renumbering of Captain Marvel was due to bad sales

And BOTH of those are WRONG, let's just say that I don't have much faith in their analytical skills about the market.

Personally, I DO NOT KNOW.

And, I do not know about movie theatres reopening. I do not know about how comic books stores will handle it. I do not know how restaurants are going to make it.  Even books (which DO have a strong digital market) are getting hit.  It's all a giant blender.  If someone says they do know -- well sorry they're lying.  But that's what analysts do for a living when they talk about the future (in all venues, tech/politics/comics/movies/books).

I do think listening to professionals in the field is a good thing. They know more than us as they work in the industry.   But be careful on what they know and why they might be saying it too. Comic book creators ARE NOT experts on how diamond works.  Well, maybe Mark Waid. He actually ran a comic book label, ran an electronic publishing company, owned a comic book store AND worked for DC and Marvel (including recently).  OTH, Ethan knows fuck-all about Diamond today despite being a "comic book professional". (He doesn't work with them, and all his data is second hand... and frankly the people at Image/marvel/DC who do do not talk to him.)

So, if I was given ONLY two statements about modern comic book sales market one from Mark and one from Ethan, I'll go with Mark's. Now if you are talking about kickstarter, I go with Ethan.

So, I'm interested in which creators you are talking about and what they said.  Absent that... you are just making noise and the logical fallacy "appeal to authority" (only you aren't even backing that up by actually showing who/what was said!).

OTH I do know that comic book sales were up over 30% in the last few years ... based on real numbers.  I do know that monthly sales of titles are not terribly out of line/down..  I was actually surprised when I looked at the old number compared to the new ones as I thought I'd see a HUGE change, and ... it's largely not there.  There are blips of "this sold 500k copies", but there are blips like that today too. IT does seem the top 10 is a bit depressed, but I've really not run any numbers to look at that.

I just know the market is more vibrant than ever -- more variety and more comics.  It's wonderful.  I hope it doesn't die.  (It's the best since the initial indie explosion)   Unfortunately this is also part of the problem for comic book stores. So many things to gamble on to carry. No carry enough  BAD. carry too much: VERY BAD.

I do not read Gotham High, or any of the epics you mention.  I do read a lot of comics though.  So, nice projecting/straw man. None of these sell all that well so I don't know why you are focusing/obsessing on fringe comics so much.  If you were ranting about the main X-Titles you'd be talking about something significant.

I really don't care about your rants about what this creator said or didn't say or why it's ok for this one to say that and not for another that you like to say something equally as bad.  I really don't care.

None of it is why the comics industry will die if it doesn't restart after this Covid-19 break.  IF it happens, AND all the other industries rebound, at that point well, I'll start to give more credence that maybe it's right. But right now, so much and so many industries are in flux that it's just silly to claim this as the cause.

All the stuff you say might be true and might be affecting the industry ... it's just not showing up in the comic book sales yet so I'm having a hard time buying it.  I DO see stores having problems.  But this is due to other factors than the content of the books (despite that yes, some store owners complain loudly about it....none of them would care if they could return books.)

There are a reasonable size group of fans that are really upset and complaining about it.  That's without question.  But, the only difference is now we have the internet and they can find each other and echo BS to themselves all day.  Fans like this have ALWAYS been there and ALWAYS complaining.

And yes, that is happening on the SJW side too.  Both sides need smacked out of their echo chamber.

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12 Apr 2020 21:13 #67644 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
Lots of people are making good points here, but the one area that I believe is completely unrelated is any increase in the injection of politics or culture wars into comics as the cause of their demise. 

The comics of the 1960's and 70's were dripping in it, given they were trying to incorporate the politics of youth and the counterculture into every issue. The only problem, like today, is that the writers usually sucked at getting it right, often overdoing it and making it insufferable and even silly. Not a new problem.

The other arguments about how the industry is run (probably poorly) I can't judge, but my old Supergirl comics from the 60's are truly comical to read now, given they were trying so very hard to be hip and with it and politically connected to youth. Bit they were written by people who didn't quite get it. That's still true. 

Mostly what happened is that the US used to be pretty conservative with liberal rebels. Now its becoming mostly liberal with conservative rebels. Either way, rebels shout a lot. As they should. After all, they're rebels to mainstream thinking and they have to shout to be heard. . 

The trick is to keep the shouting in perspective. 

(I don't mention Europe because I'm less informed of an observer, and the early 60's -- when I became politically aware -- were still a period of European recovery from WWII along with suffering from having the military empires of the USSR on one side and the US on the other, and it was hard to be heard over the screaming. Now the EU has fully recovered its own voice, which is growing ever louder, which is awesome, but I am not tuned in enough to tie that into this discussion. )

Shadar
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12 Apr 2020 21:38 #67645 by TwiceOnThursdays
Replied by TwiceOnThursdays on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?

kikass2014 wrote: Just one quick thing I remembered.

You know those "sales" numbers, are comics "shipped" by Diamond?

And because DC and Marvel do NOT accept returns on any of their titles, they count as "sold".

So yeah, might want to rethink those numbers.  Just because a title SHIPS X, doesn't mean it SELLS X.   Just ask all the comic stores who have tons of unsold comics they can't sell.

IF Marvel and DC had any faith in their books, they would say to comic store owners they can return any unsold copies.

Wonder what the "numbers" you dug up will look like then?

Peace.

/K


THIS is an actual point.  And yes I was absolutely aware of that fact.

But also, it's been true for a LONG time (even back in 2011) so.. data has always been under the same conditions, so relatively it's correct.

OTH, I have some actual idea what does and does not sell that way.  How?  Well I go to comic conventions and there are these things called "$1 boxes".  Guess what's in them?  Yes, that's it, the shit that doesn't sell but too many copies were ordered.  The stuff that can't be sent back. I have noticed that there are a lot less of them in the last year or so, I think stores just aren't gambling as much (because they can't afford it). it will be interesting to see if the new x books show up in the $1 bin or not.

So yes, stores ARE gambling. But if i look at an established title, and average it's sales for a year -- those are real #'s.  How Can I say that?  Because if a store orders 100 copies of Batman, and sells 80.  And the next month they do it again. And Again... well, they're going to start ordering 80 copies of Batman.   They'll get caught flat footed on some change or big thing that blips the comic (like Bat-wang).

And they do the same guess for Ms. Marvel, X-Men, Captain Marvel, Black Widow (etc).

I know a store owner show didn't carry Squirrel Girl AT ALL.  NONE of his customers had it on his pull, and when he bought two copies when they got too old he still had two copies. OTH, my comic book store (in the same city) regularly sells out and had more copies on the shelf (different customer mixes, different sales). Do I fault him for NOT carrying it?  No one iota.  Hell, I'm super happy he's so open minded that he carried it to see if it would sell for him in his store.

OTH, Marvel should have ABSOLUTELY sent him five free copies so he could test that w/o risk.  No need for returns, "Hey loyal comic store owner, please try to sell these!  Let us know how it goes!"

NEW titles and #1 are a crapshoot. But, I also know my store uses a simple prognostication method. They give the top comic buyers free copies of previews and have us pre-order comics we are interested in.  

They then use this to guess what will sell. Frankly the entire thing is so horrible I don't know how ANY comic book store stays in business.

So... a good portion of some of those comics are pre-ordered by fans.  Pulls are the majority of comics sales for stores, and it's what keeps them afloat.  (Which is why ALWAYS BUY THE COMICS IN YOUR PULL.)

Also, something you didn't mention is 25:1 variants (or worse). That shit drove a comic book store I liked under, chasing stupid variant covers.

These are things the industry needs to change to help the stores. And I hope it happens!

But again, notice how SJW rants aren't part of ANY of this.  Comic don't sell, stores don't order.  Comic gets canceled.  Old story. ;-)

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12 Apr 2020 23:46 #67647 by cbaby
Replied by cbaby on topic Pandemic = Kryptonite for comics?
Isn't part of the problem that there are just so many different comics published every month?  Surely something more like the japanese manga magazines with several different comics in one volume per month be a better way to go?  I suspect the sheer volume puts off many people trying to get into it in the first place.
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