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  1. #46
    Extraordinary Member JKtheMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frontier View Post
    A part of me thinks this is just indicative of what the market is now. Nothing sells as well as it did even a few years ago.
    Indeed. Anyone expecting issue 2 of an event book to sell in the 100k range is not paying attention to how the market works today. Marvel will not be upset with 70k.

  2. #47
    Astonishing Member DragonsChi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frontier View Post
    A part of me thinks this is just indicative of what the market is now. Nothing sells as well as it did even a few years ago.
    Thing is, it's not the markets fault. It's content being produced by the big 2.

    We have already seen other area's of the industry doing really well right now. Yet the superhero comic market doesn't seem to find in themselves to get their collective *redacted* together and produce content that people will spend their money on.
    Last edited by DragonsChi; 05-15-2019 at 02:12 AM.
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  3. #48
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    These sales are the new norm which isn't surprising at all considering the big 2 have basically pandered to a direct market system that's essentially outdated and can only support the most popular characters and creators (outside of external boosts from tv shows and/or movies in some cases like the Walking Dead).

    Not to mention, they have done little to appeal to a more diverse audience over the last decades when the country's population has been changing in ethnic demographics, taste and entertainment consumption models. Movies, Music and Television have to a large extent realized this and have adjusted their offerings and models accordingly.

    All this being said, total sales have improved somewhat in the last few years (compared to the early 2000s if i remember correctly) and a number of Marvel titles like Avengers, Fantastic Four, Uncanny X-men (for now at least) , Captain America, Venom, Hulk are selling more than their previous volumes. This isn't surprising at all because Marvel's comics that I read have been mostly good to great IMHO.

    EDIT: It's criminal that Invaders is selling so low, that is a legit great read. I am not at all surprised to see Black Panther selling so poorly now, it's been absolutely terrible and the title needs a new writer in my opinion.
    Last edited by Username taken; 05-15-2019 at 02:56 AM.
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  4. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by JKtheMac View Post
    Yep. It is worse than this though. Uncanny is equally just filling space. It is literally tidying up some key characters to place them in the right position for a relaunch. Nominally there has been an ongoing story running in from Astonishing, but itís not an important story.

    The X-books have been a mess since Secret Wars. A few interesting titles but the flagship books just loose their way. Every attempt to sort the problem lasts a few issues and they change tack, so there is no clear ongoing narrative.
    Quoted for truth. The last few years have basically featured the X-books throwing stuff against the wall and seeing what sticks.

    I can actually understand why Hickman pushed for a total relaunch of the X-books, there needs to a complete "paradigm shift" for the entire line.
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  5. #50
    Astonishing Member DragonsChi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Username taken View Post
    These sales are the new norm which isn't surprising at all considering the big 2 have basically pandered to a direct market system that's essentially outdated and can only support the most popular characters and creators (outside of external boosts from tv shows and/or movies in some cases like the Walking Dead).

    Not to mention, they have done little to appeal to a more diverse audience over the last decades when the country's population has been changing in ethnic demographics, taste and entertainment consumption models. Movies, Music and Television have to a large extent realized this and have adjusted their offerings and models accordingly.

    All this being said, total sales have improved somewhat in the last few years (compared to the early 2000s if i remember correctly) and a number of Marvel titles like Avengers, Fantastic Four, Uncanny X-men (for now at least) , Captain America, Venom, Hulk are selling more than their previous volumes. This isn't surprising at all because Marvel's comics that I read have been mostly good to great IMHO.

    EDIT: It's criminal that Invaders is selling so low, that is a legit great read. I am not at all surprised to see Black Panther selling so poorly now, it's been absolutely terrible and the title needs a new writer in my opinion.
    I would argue they have been trying to do just that. But failing at it because most of it was cheap, lazy, superficial, and going directly against what superhero comics are about. They would give us low rent understudies which immediately undervalues them as characters on their own, have those characters preach at the consumer for several pages, and then have one action sequence that is not only drawn poorly but leaves the reader underwhelmed. And then when that book doesn't sell instead of breaking the book down to see how they could improve or make it better, they would instead choose to blame the people they want to buy their books.

    Ergo in short the reason they are failing is because the people stirring the ship have a looser (arguably uncreative) mindset and need to be removed for people who primary concerned with actually making money above all else. That will force the hiring decisions to be solely on those who can bring in revenue and as a side effect those who continually provide consistently good story telling.

    Right now Marvel is a game of Russian Roulette, with gun being loaded with 5 bullets, when it comes to trying out titles or even picking up series you tend to consume on the regular. That needs to change. Especially, now that books are 5 dollars a pop, Readers now making decisions between picking up a book you are almost sure is going to suck or getting Big Mac with fries and a coke. But at least they know off the back they will enjoy the Value Meal.
    Last edited by DragonsChi; 05-15-2019 at 05:07 AM.
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  6. #51
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    Right now Marvel is a game of Russian Roulette, with gun being loaded with 5 bullets, when it comes to trying out titles or even picking up series you tend to consume on the regular. That needs to change.[/QUOTE]

    Or not consuming anything. I used to buy 20-25 Marvel comics a month and i am down to 6 right now...thats kinda sad.

    But the money went to Image or other publisher like Aftershock or IDW.

  7. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by DragonsChi View Post
    I would argue they have been trying to do just that. But failing at it because most of it was cheap, lazy, superficial, and going directly against what superhero comics are about. They would give us low rent understudies which immediately undervalues them as characters on their own, have those characters preach at the consumer for several pages, and then have one action sequence that is not only drawn poorly but leaves the reader underwhelmed. And then when that book doesn't sell instead of breaking the book down to see how they could improve or make it better, they would instead choose to blame the people they want to buy their books.

    Ergo in short the reason they are failing is because the people stirring the ship have a looser (arguably uncreative) mindset and need to be removed for people who primary concerned with actually making money above all else. That will force the hiring decisions to be solely on those who can bring in revenue and as a side effect those who continually provide consistently good story telling.

    Right now Marvel is a game of Russian Roulette, with gun being loaded with 5 bullets, when it comes to trying out titles or even picking up series you tend to consume on the regular. That needs to change.
    It was too late and and it was all temporary. These moves should have been made years ago and this should have coincided with less dependence on the direct market.

    Although I never read any title that "preached to me" or some such nor do I agree that hiring decisions should be solely based on who can draw revenue. If that was the case, fantastic new writers like Ewing, Ahmad and Cates would never break through. Even guys Snyder and Spencer won't even get a chance. That's a suicidal move in the long run.

    I also haven't seen any evidence that Marvel is failing (like I said, a lot of their titles are very good and are experiencing sales bumps at the moment) but they like the entire industry are simply gaming and feeding the direct market which is in turn feeding a rather static audience. Although I do agree that some titles require better direction (e.g Black Panther, the entire X-line, Iron Man)
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  8. #53
    Astonishing Member DragonsChi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DanMad1977 View Post
    Right now Marvel is a game of Russian Roulette, with gun being loaded with 5 bullets, when it comes to trying out titles or even picking up series you tend to consume on the regular. That needs to change.

    Or not consuming anything. I used to buy 20-25 Marvel comics a month and i am down to 6 right now...thats kinda sad.

    But the money went to Image or other publisher like Aftershock or IDW.
    I was a steady 20 as well at one point. I'm now down to 1. Everything else get a purchase at random if I get anything at all.

    I'm at the point now where I call my store owner to hold titles for me so I can come pick them up 3 months later. So they will build up and I'm not wasting time , money, and energy going to a comic store with a shelf full of books I no longer have interest in.

    Quote Originally Posted by Username taken View Post
    It was too late and and it was all temporary. These moves should have been made years ago and this should have coincided with less dependence on the direct market.

    Although I never read any title that "preached to me" or some such nor do I agree that hiring decisions should be solely based on who can draw revenue. If that was the case, fantastic new writers like Ewing, Ahmad and Cates would never break through. Even guys Snyder and Spencer won't even get a chance. That's a suicidal move in the long run.
    It wasn't too late. In fact it can NEVER be to late. It's all about execution and continual good development. Marvel spent the last 7-5 years catering to people who DON'T and WON'T buy their products instead of doing what was right and doing it the RIGHT WAY.

    I also haven't seen any evidence that Marvel is failing (like I said, a lot of their titles are very good and are experiencing sales bumps at the moment) but they like the entire industry are simply gaming and feeding the direct market which is in turn feeding a rather static audience. Although I do agree that some titles require better direction (e.g Black Panther, the entire X-line, Iron Man)
    Look at the charts. Most of their line is at or below 50k in sales. Just because that is the new average does not make those numbers magically better. Those are cancellation range numbers. It's not good at all.
    Last edited by DragonsChi; 05-15-2019 at 06:14 AM.
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  9. #54
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    It wasn't too late. In fact it can NEVER be to late. It's all about execution and continual good development. Marvel spent the last 7-5 years catering to people who DON'T and WON'T buy their products instead of doing what was right and doing it the RIGHT WAY.
    I don't know about this. Since sales are much lower than they were in the past, I would argue that Marvel has catered to people who have been dropping their comics for decades now. The people that were buying their comics simply weren't buying the comics anymore. That's why i believe that they should diversified their audience a lot earlier.

    Although, I agree that Marvel's recent execution could have been better.

    Look at the charts. Most of their line is at or below 50k in sales. Just because that is the new average does not make those numbers magically better. Those are cancellation range numbers. It's not good at all.
    Sales could be higher but we if start to look at past sales figures at what point do we benchmark sales as ok? Do we use benchmarks of the 70s, 80s or 90s or 2000s, when average comic sales were in their hundreds of thousands to millions per month? (although I believe sales are higher now than in the early 2000s but i stand to be corrected on that though).

    We have to look at where average sales are now relative to print medium, relative to cost, relative to other forms of entertainment, relative to competing media (like manga)...doing this is simply impossible for us from the outside.
    Last edited by Username taken; 05-15-2019 at 05:43 AM.
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  10. #55
    Astonishing Member DragonsChi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Username taken View Post
    I don't know about this. Since sales are much lower than they were in the past, I would argue that Marvel has catered to people who have been dropping their comics for decades now. The people that were buying their comics simply weren't buying the comics anymore. That's why i believe that they should diversified their audience a lot earlier.

    Although, I agree that Marvel's recent execution could have been better.



    Sales could be higher but we if start to look at past sales figures at what point do we benchmark sales as ok? Do we use benchmarks of the 70s, 80s or 90s or 2000s, when average comic sales were in their hundreds of thousands to millions per month? (although I believe sales are higher now than in the early 2000s but i stand to be corrected on that though).

    We have to look at where average sales are now relative to print medium, relative to cost, relative to other forms of entertainment, relative to competing media (like manga)...doing this is simply impossible for us from the outside.
    Sorry but the sales numbers prove otherwise go back to when Axle Alonso was in charge and follow the sales and what they where doing in the marvel inverse, in their marketing, and with their staff. You can see a decline every time when an under study filled in or when a books message was more important than good story telling. There is almost a direct correlations to what was going on with the staff and how the books continue to drop in sales.

    You can see it even now with the books that are at 5-7k and are on the 2nd or 3rd relaunch. You can have diversity sell just not the way marvel is doing and more so not at the detrimental of your bottom line. There is no getting around that.

    The books were selling before all that started. Even with Quasade short spike sales tactics.

    It's all right here on the internet. Even those like myself who never really followed much of the behind the scenes stuff can find what was/is going on an tell you why the superhero comic industry is in continual decline.
    Last edited by DragonsChi; 05-15-2019 at 06:13 AM.
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  11. #56
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    Sorry but the sales numbers prove otherwise go back to when Axle Alonso was in charge and follow the sales and what they where doing. You can see a decline every time one an under study filled in or when a books message was more imporant than good story telling.
    Sales have declined long before Alonso. Why should we ignore previous sales declines? (I hope this isn't a "comicsgate" thing because the entire topic has been banned here and the movement is made up primarily of bigots and transphobes, it's not a topic i'm willing to discuss anymore to be honest). When discussing declining sales over a long period, i'm less inclined to focus on a particular period when sales have been falling for a good long while.

    Alonso went relaunch heavy and no doubt said relaunches eventually became less and less impactful but that's because sales were consistently declining. Standard attrition in comics sales isn't a new phenomenon.

    You can see it even now with the books that are at 5-7k and are on the 2nd or 3rd relaunch. You can have diversity sell just not the way marvel is doing and more so not at the detrameant of your bottom line. There is no getting around that.

    The books were selling before all that started. Even with Quasadas short spike sales tactics.
    The titles were mostly selling around what they were now:

    https://www.comichron.com/monthlycom...5/2015-04.html

    That was the month just before Secret Wars (which was just before All New All Different Marvel) and a lot of titles were still new into a relaunch and were already selling where they are now. And before that, Captain America, Hulk and Iron Man's sales had slumped into the 20k range, hence why I feel that guys like Ewing, Cates and even Spencer deserve a lot of credit. Their work has been very good and has largely boosted sales titles.
    Last edited by Username taken; 05-15-2019 at 06:31 AM.
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  12. #57
    Astonishing Member DragonsChi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Username taken View Post
    Sales have declined long before Alonso. Why should we ignore previous sales declines? (I hope this isn't a "comicsgate" thing because the entire topic has been banned here and the movement is made up primarily of bigots and transphobes, it's not a topic i'm willing to discuss anymore to be honest). When discussing declining sales over a long period, i'm less inclined to focus on a particular period when sales have been falling for a good long while.

    Alonso went relaunch heavy and no doubt said relaunches eventually became less and less impactful but that's because sales were consistently declining. Standard attrition in comics sales isn't a new phenomenon.



    The titles were mostly selling around what they were now:

    https://www.comichron.com/monthlycom...5/2015-04.html

    That was the month just before Secret Wars (which was just before All New All Different Marvel) and a lot of titles were still new into a relaunch and were already selling where they are now. And before that, Captain America, Hulk and Iron Man's sales had slumped into the 20k range, hence why I feel that guys like Ewing deserve a lot of credit.
    This is strictly about sales and facts. The numbers dont lie.
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  13. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by DragonsChi View Post
    This is strictly about sales and facts. The numbers dont lie.
    Exactly.

    Hence why I quoted them to buttress my point.
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  14. #59

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    Quote Originally Posted by Username taken View Post
    These sales are the new norm which isn't surprising at all considering the big 2 have basically pandered to a direct market system that's essentially outdated and can only support the most popular characters and creators (outside of external boosts from tv shows and/or movies in some cases like the Walking Dead).

    Not to mention, they have done little to appeal to a more diverse audience over the last decades when the country's population has been changing in ethnic demographics, taste and entertainment consumption models. Movies, Music and Television have to a large extent realized this and have adjusted their offerings and models accordingly.

    All this being said, total sales have improved somewhat in the last few years (compared to the early 2000s if i remember correctly) and a number of Marvel titles like Avengers, Fantastic Four, Uncanny X-men (for now at least) , Captain America, Venom, Hulk are selling more than their previous volumes. This isn't surprising at all because Marvel's comics that I read have been mostly good to great IMHO.

    EDIT: It's criminal that Invaders is selling so low, that is a legit great read. I am not at all surprised to see Black Panther selling so poorly now, it's been absolutely terrible and the title needs a new writer in my opinion.
    I think both DC and Marvel should really rebuild their business from the ground up and create products that appeal to the DIFFERENT KINDS of customer -- or potential customer.

    I agree that the direct market is being pandered to, but right now, that's the backbone of the industry. I don't see abandoning the DM as a good thing. Rather, I like what DC is doing with their new imprints, DC Ink and DC Zoom -- they are creating products to reach new kinds of customers.

    The serialized story periodical that is the core product in the LCS will not appeal to the casual buyer -- the potential new fan who is curious about these characters after seeing them in movies.

    It's overwhelming for a movie fan to walk into a comic store and be faced with racks and racks and cases and cases of floppies -- or shelves and shelves of trade paperbacks that reprint the floppies and are organized haphazardly.

    The Infinity Gauntlet trade paperback sold very well for Marvel last year because those who saw the movie were able to come in to a store and pick up a single book that told a version of the story that the movie was based on. However, that's not always gonna work as not all movies are based on a specific storyline.

    With DC Ink and Zoom, DC is creating standalone graphic novels that don't tie in to the movies, but also are self-contained so knowing the storylines in the monthly comics isn't necessary.

    These books will appeal to the casual reader who just wants to read a fun story then maybe lend it to a friend -- the same kids and young adults who buy Captain Underpants or Diary of a Wimpy Kid. There's no reason why DC and Marvel should NOT be in that market.

    So, right now DC is creating product for the hardcore fan who wants to follow a universe of serialized periodicals each week, but is also creating product that is self-contained and whose storylines are more timeless that can be picked up and read in any order and at any time by someone who is just browsing in a regular bookstore.

    That's what I think needs to be done more. Don't abandon the LCS because right now, there's nothing to replace it. Rather, make the commitment to develop new distribution channels like Wal-Mart and bookstores and create products that will appeal to customers who frequent those venues, but would never set foot in a comic store, but still nurture the LCS market with compelling product.

    Right now, DC is doing just that, but I think DC has always had a stronger presence in the bookstore market than Marvel. Hopefully, Marvel and the other companies will follow suit. Archie, in particular, is tailor made for standalone graphic novels that appeal to the 8-to-15 year olds. Instead, it has been trying to ape DC and Marvel by converting to serialized periodicals with the Mark Waid stuff.

    Standalone, complete-in-one-book stories priced below 15 dollars should be a goal. Bookstores are notorious for not having a complete set of a series. So, no numbering each volume. Stop trying to appeal to the collectors' mentality in the bookstore marketplace, because it turns more people off than on. Make it EASY for people to buy your product -- as much or as little as THEY want. Stop trying to force a whole collection on them, and they'll be willing to sample more.

    For me, the more interconnected the floppies became and the more the stories became a never-ending serial, the fewer comics I bought. Once collecting comics became WORK, I checked out.

  15. #60
    Astonishing Member DragonsChi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Username taken View Post
    Exactly.

    Hence why I quoted them to buttress my point.
    Your not looking at the whole picture.


    ....fudge you guys are going to make me make a graph at teach this stuff like it's class.
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