akbogert's comments

  • 11 results
  • 1
  • 2
Avatar image for akbogert
Posted By akbogert

Reading through the back and forth on price thing, I'm not sure why the negative response to double-shipping is hard to grasp. Didio literally says "we're double-shipping our important books and we're also bringing the price down of the DC line." That is an absolute contradiction. A person who wanted to read, say, Batman in 2015 would get 12 issues for 4 dollars -- 48 dollars. A person who wants to read Batman in 2017 (presuming same price) will get 24 issues for 3 dollars -- 72 dollars. The price of the line has not gone down. Keeping up with any of those books just got 50% more expensive.

Now you're quite right to say that readers are getting more content than before (assuming -- and there's not necessarily a good basis for this assumption -- that the quality and page lengths are maintained in the transition to double-shipping). But fans were not struggling with too little content; they were struggling with costs. And double-shipping is diametrically opposed to solving that problem.

Avatar image for akbogert
Posted By akbogert

@lvenger said:

@akbogert: Not to say that your concerns aren't legitimate ones but this post explains the most likely reason why DC are forgoing the diversity promotion that the DCYou tried to aim for.

@the_stegman said:

Everyone complaining about lack of diversity, they tried that.. TWICE, and nobody bought the comics. It's why Omega Men failed, it's why Demon Knights failed, it's why I Vampire failed.

People say they want diverse characters, then don't buy them. Right now, DC is playing it safe. They don't wanna lose millions by putting out titles no one will buy.

Unfortunately the books where different tones, stories and characters were chosen over others haven't sold well. The Bleeding Cool rumour mill was ripe with reports that DC/WB execs were disappointed with DC's market share and wanted to go back to a 'meat and potatoes' business plan. It's a Catch 22 situation, either DC does diversity and loses massive sales because people don't buy or they play safe and promote their usual stock of comics that will be more likely to sell and get flack for not being diverse. Not that I agree with this approach but it explains DC's thinking.

That post doesn't address what I said at all. So I'll repeat the relevant portion of what I said:

"People are buying diverse books from Marvel. They are buying diverse books from Image. They are buying, and those audiences are expanding in unprecedented ways. And note, particularly with Marvel, that they are giving their most important mantles -- like Thor and Captain America -- to women and to minorities, and then they are focusing their marketing and promotional support on those characters to generate excitement about them. Having a non-white, non-male lead, but then burying it beneath twenty non-diverse titles, does not imply that DC has faith or hope in that title or character, which is why DC's "attempts" at diversity have failed: they were not seriously pushed by the company to begin with."

DC hasn't "tried" anything even close to giving a woman or person of color one of their most important books, and then promoting the hell out of it.

DC's belief that catering to a wider swathe of readers is dangerous or doomed to fail has consistently led to their "attempts" being utterly half-a**ed. They've tried diversity the way NBC "tried" Constantine: treating it like a major risk they're uncomfortable with taking, and then saying "I told you so" when it underperforms against the things to which they give their primo spots.

This is really quite straightforward. Women and ethnic and racial and religious "minorities" vastly outnumber white, straight, Christian-ish males. Treat them like an afterthought or "stretch goal," and they will treat DC like an afterthought. And while other companies adapt and flourish, DC will die.

Avatar image for akbogert
Edited By akbogert

My thoughts have mostly already been voiced by other people:

  1. No creative teams or solicit blurbs means judging this early is largely pointless. Especially where team books or characters which could be numerous people are concerned: we literally don't even know who The Flash will be or which heroes are Teen Titans, for example.
  2. Double-shipping is the worst part of this announcement. Even if -- and this is highly unlikely -- the quality were maintained for every issue of double-shipping titles, the cost of buying that often is not something I am really willing to stomach. As a digital reader, I'd have to pick between two Image titles or one DC title a month. And Image will give me more pages, and probably backmatter.
  3. A focus on direct market seems backwards in an era where every other medium is embracing digital and within comics you have Image DRM-free PDFs and Marvel Unlimited subscriptions.
@squalleon said:
It may not look impressive but DC is in tatters right now. They have to make sure they bring out the strongest product they can. Hence they are focusing on their big guns. They can't take the risks they took with the New 52 and DCY...This again is their opening salvo. And DC has to make sure it is strong.

This kind of thinking is the problem, though. Your words suggest that focusing on women or minorities is somehow antithetical to a strong start. It's a backwards, self-fulfilling prophecy: the more DC acts like non-white males aren't part of their business, the fewer non-white males will buy their books. Leaving these kinds of titles out of the opening salvo means that DC starts out on the wrong foot with many demographics that would have provided viable (currently mostly untapped) paying customers.

The suggestion that DC's need to "bring out the strongest product they can" is a reason not to focus on underrepresented groups is...incredibly upsetting.

People are buying diverse books from Marvel. They are buying diverse books from Image. They are buying, and those audiences are expanding in unprecedented ways. And note, particularly with Marvel, that they are giving their most important mantles -- like Thor and Captain America -- to women and to minorities, and then they are focusing their marketing and promotional support on those characters to generate excitement about them. Having a non-white, non-male lead, but then burying it beneath twenty non-diverse titles, does not imply that DC has faith or hope in that title or character, which is why DC's "attempts" at diversity have failed: they were not seriously pushed by the company to begin with.

@allstarsuperman said:

Does this mean starfire is back with the Outlaws? Hopefully. Her title was probably the worst thing DC published.

Ironically, it is the only DC title I am currently buying. Comics: takes all types.

Avatar image for akbogert
Posted By akbogert

"We're giving them great jumping on points over and over again, but it's becoming so commonplace our audience instead sees them as opportunities to cut and run."

Very true, in my personal experience. There are a couple Marvel books I stopped reading in ANAD -- I viewed Secret Wars as an excuse to cut some of them off. DC's rebirth thing has me eyeing the end of certain runs with the same mindset. It also has kept me from starting any new DC titles for the first half of 2016 because I have no reason to believe the status quo they are establishing will be relevant six months from now.

"Jumping on points" are important for bringing in new readers. If continuity becomes too gatekeeper-ish, readership becomes fixed and is impeded from ever legitimately growing. But saying "this is a great jumping on point" can often seem like saying "investment in the past of this book/run/team/character is unnecessary/unvalued." I don't know what the best way of reconciling these two points is, but I agree that the way things have been going is not the correct solution.

Avatar image for akbogert
Posted By akbogert

@abdullahzubair: I mean, you're certainly welcome to not invest much in Star Wars (I personally have never been much of a fan). But what you are saying belies a fundamental ignorance of how these movies were planned and conceived by Lucas and his company. True, the very first movie was not made with the knowledge that it would launch a successful franchise, but by the time Episode V came out, Lucas was already thinking of it as a fifth movie rather than as a second. So the expectation for further movies -- first with the prequel trilogy, and now at last with the sequel trilogy -- has been there for the better part of thirty years.

I can see why you might feel like the spinoff (non-episode) movies they are making seem extraneous, but it's not reasonable to complain that those films exist.

Avatar image for akbogert
Posted By akbogert

@abdullahzubair: I get what you're saying about the extended stuff, but it was planned from the beginning to be nine movies. So... you're just objectively wrong if you say the franchise "ended" before episode 7.

Avatar image for akbogert
Posted By akbogert

@abdullahzubair: Now I'm kinda curious. Because 1/2 of their top books (and 4 of their 9 top trades -- including top 2) were Star Wars. Depending on how many units, I'm tempted to say having such a high concentration of Star Wars books at the top will add up to more than 10%.

It seems like Star Wars books alone are competing decently with some entire publishers' output.

Avatar image for akbogert
Posted By akbogert

Has anyone done any sort of breakdown (not necessarily for January, but for any recent stretch of time) of how Marvel is doing outside of its Star Wars books? Obviously those are popular, and provide the kind of predictable revenue that allows Marvel to take chances on more niche titles. I'm just wondering how dependent Marvel's success and market share is on those properties.

Avatar image for akbogert
Posted By akbogert

I can't handle this many events at once. Standoff, Apocalypse Wars, and Scorpio Rising?

Avatar image for akbogert
Posted By akbogert

@galeme said:

Can someone please enlighten me what's with the Cyclops? It is like everybody hate him? What has he done? I didn't read the X-Men series before Secret Wars.

Also I didn't understand why Jean Grey is a student. And why Inhumans are attacking mutants. They are kinda same thing.

I feel like it's not a good jumping point.

It's designed to be the perfect jumping on point.

We have no idea what Cyclops did or what happened because post Secret Wars there is an eight month gap. Clearly a lot has changed, because Uncanny X-Men #600 (which stupidly just came out) was the last X-Men issue before Secret Wars and there was nothing earthshattering or controversial there. So the hatred towards him and fear of mutants is something we are dropped into in medias res and I am assuming Lemire intends to revisit what happened later on. That's the way a lot of these new books are: they show you the current status quo, but there has been a lot of time since Battleworld and we don't necessarily have an explanation for how things got to where they are yet.

  • 11 results
  • 1
  • 2