Thursday, April 07, 2005

IN CASE U MISSED IT: Big 2 marketing secrets exposed!
Mutant rapes BAD, Seven Soldiers GOOD

CBR.CC is home to Permanent Damage the weekly comics, politics, movie, and TV column by Steven Grant. One of my favorite weekly spots.

Within this week's peanut gallery, we have the following:

"Comics simply aren't "too expensive." Take two people to an NFL game or a NASCAR race or, hell, even the movies with a couple of popcorns and drinks if you want really outrageously priced entertainment options.

Mediocre comics are too expensive. As a retailer, I had/have absolutely no trouble selling massive numbers of something like 1602 or LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN despite the fact that (at the time) they were 20-30% more expensive that 'comparable' comics. The important take-home is that they sold like they did because there were significant numbers of people we had never seen before coming in to buy them, and, being one of those 'bookstore'-type stores, we took the opportunity to turn them onto other stuff they might like.
As someone who makes his living on comics, it may be perverse of me to say this, but I think one of the industry's major problems is that there are still too many people who buy bad comics sheerly out of habit. Until the hardcore fanboys whither away completely, Marvel and DC can still squeak by with just adding another X-MEN or BATMAN book to the roster. In their misguided minds (and you've talked about the same problem with TV) the "risk" of trying new things somehow looms massively larger than the equally dangerous probability that what worked once may not (will not, more likely) work a sixth time. (I'm waiting for CSI BANGOR, starring a salty midlist actor as the 'mentor' and a patrician-sounding Brahmin detective as the relentless crime-bot... their first case involves a body that's been mostly consumed by... wait for it... lobsters!) If you build your whole business model around retelling the same stories with a few different sequins glued on, you're going to eventually fail just as soundly as if you took a "big risk" and flamed out. It'll just be way less interesting to watch.

So, bottom line: MUTANT RAPE TEAM OF THE BAT is too expensive at a dime. SEVEN SOLDIERS #0 is a steal at $2.95. It's not a calculation that can be made across the board with comics any more than it can with, say, food."

Thanks. Couldn't have said it any better myself.

And it can't be said enough, your dollars going to gluttonous corporate license franchises directly impact the bottom lines of all us smaller guys. Nothing wrong with that, just need to keep that in mind when you're coasting on book x, or whatever, even though it's not really that good...
Cut that deadweight and try something different.
I know even I'm guilty of this, so I imagine most of us are.

Check out Steven's fine column HERE if you don't already...

Oh yes, and I concur, Seven Soldiers is the funky freshest!

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