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  1. #1306
    Mighty Member Yoda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sam View Post
    Oh, come on. DC promoted the heck out of Bendis taking over the title. BENDIS IS COMING was plastered all over the DC books, he was interviewed in major newspaper, and Didio hyped is arrival all over the con circuit. Plus, his run was coming out of the very successful Action Comics 1000. This wasn't just a creative team switch. It had the full force of DC's promotion behind it. I mean, that first Superman issue of Bendis sold well over 100,000 units, above the initial Tomasi issue. He had every opportunity to get readers on board. And he's lost them much faster.

    As for your other point, even if you go by time, Tomasi would still be out ahead, but you can't dismiss it by issue. Two Superman issues a month means twice the profit. So Bendis is immediately deliver less bang for the buck by doing one a month.
    Is there literally any evidence of out of market advertising having any impact whatsoever on comic sales? Ever? Black Panther had a billion dollar movie and its selling in the 20k or teen range consistently. The only time any sort of mainstream publicity has any impact is when it tickles the speculation market and then it’s a blip, much like the identity reveal. Action Comics 1000 wasn’t a relaunch it was a massive anniversary issue.

    He didn’t lose them faster though. He lost them at a rate that was generally consistent with the market. If you compare the attrition between Superman and Action and bunch of other books from that same span Bendis retained more month to month than books like Green Lantern and Amazing Spider-Man. Which have been generally very well received. The % drop month to month was steeper for Morrison’s Green Lantern than Superman or Action Comics.

    This month drop seems steeper, but I don’t know that is an indication that anything has been rejected by fans. Likely we have a couple of months worth of typical attrition hitting with a drop off from the drive by buyers who picked up a couple of issues of the ID reveal and likely artificially inflated the numbers and hid that attrition.

    As for the relaunch point, Look at the X-Men books. They’ve had years of new number 1’s and creative team shifts that give little bumps. That’s the typical way those sales bumps go. That’s closer to what Bendis’s Superman run was. It wasn’t until Hickman effectively relaunched the entire line that that the X-Books had any traction. Rebirth had a massive line wide relaunch, it’s comparable to New 52’s launch, not Bendis coming over. I give you that Bendis is probably closer to Hickman’s X-Men than Rebirth, but even then Hickman has taken the books in a completely new direction. There was no massive change in direction for the Super books or a complete revamp. It’s been far more subdued.
    Last edited by Yoda; 03-21-2020 at 07:50 AM.

  2. #1307
    Ultimate Member Ascended's Avatar
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    I doubt DC expected the ads for the identity reveal to do any more than help that brief speculator spike. They'd be foolish if they did, advertising hasn't had much of impact in a long time. Superman typically just sells what Superman is going to sell.

    When the titles' atrophy rates increase above industry norms, then we'll know things are going sideways. Until then? The books are holding steady and there's not much to worry about.
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  3. #1308
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yoda View Post
    Is there literally any evidence of out of market advertising having any impact whatsoever on comic sales? Ever? Black Panther had a billion dollar movie and its selling in the 20k or teen range consistently. The only time any sort of mainstream publicity has any impact is when it tickles the speculation market and then it’s a blip, much like the identity reveal. Action Comics 1000 wasn’t a relaunch it was a massive anniversary issue.
    Mainstream comic movies are VERY difference than advertising for comics. Rebirth was a line wide-relaunch sure, but it had to make use of advertising to sell it as all things do. If there is a promotion push behind a title, it's going to have the same effect. Line wide-relaunches aren't the only way sales success.

    Quote Originally Posted by Yoda View Post
    He didn’t lose them faster though. He lost them at a rate that was generally consistent with the market. If you compare the attrition between Superman and Action and bunch of other books from that same span Bendis retained more month to month than books like Green Lantern and Amazing Spider-Man. Which have been generally very well received. The % drop month to month was steeper for Morrison’s Green Lantern than Superman or Action Comics.
    He did lose them faster. Even if it's consistent with the market now (which might be because of reader dissatisfaction in general), he lost readers faster than Tomasi and Jurgens, but that's beside the point. The point is the recent steep drops that have happened in Action and Superman since the reveal. Most titles did not lose 4000 month to month when they are 20 issues deep.

    Quote Originally Posted by Yoda View Post
    This month drop seems steeper, but I don’t know that is an indication that anything has been rejected by fans. Likely we have a couple of months worth of typical attrition hitting with a drop off from the drive by buyers who picked up a couple of issues of the ID reveal and likely artificially inflated the numbers and hid that attrition.
    Hence, either way, as a method of boosting long-tern sales, the ID reveal was a failure. Anyway, Action had the exact same drop in January, which wouldn't have been boosted due to speculators. There was definitely some sort of rejection going on.

    Quote Originally Posted by Yoda View Post
    As for the relaunch point, Look at the X-Men books. They’ve had years of new number 1’s and creative team shifts that give little bumps. That’s the typical way those sales bumps go. That’s closer to what Bendis’s Superman run was. It wasn’t until Hickman effectively relaunched the entire line that that the X-Books had any traction. Rebirth had a massive line wide relaunch, it’s comparable to New 52’s launch, not Bendis coming over. I give you that Bendis is probably closer to Hickman’s X-Men than Rebirth, but even then Hickman has taken the books in a completely new direction. There was no massive change in direction for the Super books or a complete revamp. It’s been far more subdued.
    No, there was pretty massive change of the Super books, but change is immaterial. Did they promote it as a big change? YES. It was a revamp of the Superman line and all the books there. While there weren't as many new titles, it is absolutely comparable to the Hickman situation and it was promoted like it was the next big thing (and DC apparently made a play for Hickman around the same time as Bendis, but the promise of the X-books kept him at Marvel).
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  4. #1309
    Ultimate Member Ascended's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sam View Post
    The point is the recent steep drops that have happened in Action and Superman since the reveal. Most titles did not lose 4000 month to month when they are 20 issues deep.
    I haven't paid much attention to the sales lately, but #18 did see a spike of some sort as I recall. If it's lost readers at a higher rate since then, it's likely just the loss of the speculator spike. If the drop keeps going and goes well below the title's typical sales floor, then it's a problem, but otherwise it's likely just the speculators not sticking around, which they never do.

    Hence, either way, as a method of boosting long-tern sales, the ID reveal was a failure.
    Indeed. Though whether it was intended to provide a long term boost is the question. I don't know what DC expected but I certainly didn't expect it to make lasting changes to the sales. Superman sells what Superman sells.

    Anyway, Action had the exact same drop in January, which wouldn't have been boosted due to speculators. There was definitely some sort of rejection going on.
    Same percentage drop? Then maybe it is a rejection of the identity reveal. Could be a few different things but if the atrophy rate is the same, then that could very well be the reason. And would it be surprising if it's true? Clark's secret identity is a huge aspect of the mythos; this story was always going to be a risk.
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  5. #1310
    Ultimate Member Sacred Knight's Avatar
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    The #1's definitely matter. That's a big factor when it comes to sales. I'd say the the promotion Bendis got upon arriving, while prominent, is still a secondary type of boost compared to new #1s. That'll still be your tried and true method of bringing in the sales, above a late night tv appearance. I've argued before that Rebirth definitely had that built in over Bendis's arrival, and just because I've soured on his run now doesn't change that belief. That aside though, I agree with Sam on the point that Bendis' run has definitely downtrended faster than Rebirth. I think its downtrending faster than the New 52 as well, but I haven't verified that. I count on others to do the math stuff...I hate math.
    Last edited by Sacred Knight; 03-21-2020 at 12:20 PM.
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  6. #1311
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sam View Post
    As for your other point, even if you go by time, Tomasi would still be out ahead, but you can't dismiss it by issue. Two Superman issues a month means twice the profit.
    I don’t have a dog in this fight, but this last bit is not true. Two issues a month does not mean twice the profit because it costs twice as much to produce.

    The benefit of double shipping is that selling two issues of a ”Superman” book a month is easier than trying to sell an issue of ”Superman” and an issue of “The Green Team” or “Talon.” DC wants to have a certain number of books on the racks each month, so double shipping the more popular titles is a surer bet. But they still had to pay Tomasi and Gleason for producing two issues.

  7. #1312
    Moderator Frontier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    Johns’ Superman is the Donner Superman with all the strengths and weaknesses of that take. Didio has helped make a lot of my all time favorite Superman stories happen such as when he got Morrison back from Marvel, but everything he had planned with 5G sounded terrible to me. I’m not a fan of the Kents’ being back which comes from Johns, but I’m also not a fan of Bendis’ new Legion which is something Didio wanted, a full reboot of the team, I’d rather have Johns Retroboot Legion back. Ultimately between Superman and Action Bendis will have written over 50 issues of Superman soon, so if things end before issue 40 of each book I’ll still be content since I’ve enjoyed a lot of stuff Bendis has made for Supes.
    I never really got that impression. I think people just jumped on that because Gary Frank, who was probably the artist most associated with Johns' run, obviously modeled Supes after Christopher Reeve...and obviously there were some Donner influences like the Phantom Zone prisoners, but Superman himself felt like a standard version to me.

  8. #1313
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    Okay, to the Bendis defenders, show the benefits of trashing Tomasi's Superman and doing the horse manure we're getting now.

  9. #1314
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    Quote Originally Posted by RJT View Post
    I don’t have a dog in this fight, but this last bit is not true. Two issues a month does not mean twice the profit because it costs twice as much to produce.

    The benefit of double shipping is that selling two issues of a ”Superman” book a month is easier than trying to sell an issue of ”Superman” and an issue of “The Green Team” or “Talon.” DC wants to have a certain number of books on the racks each month, so double shipping the more popular titles is a surer bet. But they still had to pay Tomasi and Gleason for producing two issues.
    Yes, you still have to pay them for producing two, but you still get a profit from each of those issues, so two times the profit each month. As a result, saying that issue 20 of Bendis run should be compared to issue 40 of Tomasi's is disingenious, because while issue 40 might be coming out in the same time frame as issue 20 in Bendis run. Tomasi's 40 issues would have resulted overall more profit than Bendis's 20 even if they sold the similarly each month they were released (hypothetically speaking).

    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    I haven't paid much attention to the sales lately, but #18 did see a spike of some sort as I recall. If it's lost readers at a higher rate since then, it's likely just the loss of the speculator spike. If the drop keeps going and goes well below the title's typical sales floor, then it's a problem, but otherwise it's likely just the speculators not sticking around, which they never do.
    18 did get a spike, but 19 sold lower than the series was selling before the spike. In other words, the spike was already gone. It then lost an additional 4000 units for 20, even though 20 had a card stock variant that has traditionally boosted an issue's sales.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    Indeed. Though whether it was intended to provide a long term boost is the question. I don't know what DC expected but I certainly didn't expect it to make lasting changes to the sales. Superman sells what Superman sells.
    Except historically, Superman has sold in a wide range. We've had runs that sold in the 30K range, ones that sold in the 40K range, and ones that sold in the 50K range.

    Anyway, yes, I think DC was hoping Bendis would sell better than he has and I think they're promotional pushes have been attempts to bring more attention to his titles and boost his sales.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    Same percentage drop? Then maybe it is a rejection of the identity reveal. Could be a few different things but if the atrophy rate is the same, then that could very well be the reason. And would it be surprising if it's true? Clark's secret identity is a huge aspect of the mythos; this story was always going to be a risk.
    It lost about 3,000 if I remember correctly which would be a similar percentage (though not exactly the same). I haven't done the exact calculations.
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