Black Panther World of Wakanda canceled: why superhero comics don't sell
June 15, 2017 4:42 PM   Subscribe

Marvel has historically demonstrated an inability to convert its booming box-office success into comic sales. Why is that? Because of poor marketing and a lack of understanding of their audience. From Swapna Krishna, 900 words for SyFyWire on comics publishing missteps.
posted by cgc373 (56 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
 
I totally agree, I'm a trade reader. Although some of it is wanting more of the story at in a sitting, a lot of it for me is just durability. Issues are flimsy and I want something I can throw in my bag to read on the train to work. I've had friends offer to loan me issues and I refuse, because I'm sure I'd destroy them.
posted by misskaz at 4:48 PM on June 15 [6 favorites]


TLDR: because most people don't want to spend 7-10 dollars on 25 pages of content once a month.
posted by Silentgoldfish at 4:48 PM on June 15 [29 favorites]


This was the comic co-written by current cultural writing rockstars Ta-Nehisi Coates and Roxane Gay, and that Marvel was not aggressively cross-promoting that fact EVERYWHERE should make Marvel liable for felony charges of criminal stupidity and racist negligence.
posted by nicebookrack at 4:51 PM on June 15 [51 favorites]


Also if the Marvel Cinematic Universe straightwashes Ayo in the Black Panther film, I will burn everything.
posted by nicebookrack at 4:54 PM on June 15 [2 favorites]


This was the comic co-written by current cultural writing rockstars Ta-Nehisi Coates and Roxane Gay, and that Marvel was not aggressively cross-promoting that fact EVERYWHERE should make Marvel liable for felony charges of criminal stupidity and racist negligence.

Seriously. I likely wouldn't have bought it for the reasons listed in the article, but I also did NOT KNOW that Roxanne Gay was writing a comic book. Hiring the right people to tell the stories is only one part of the equation Marvel. You also have to reach the people who would want to read them in the way that they would be likely to find the information -- which clearly isn't the way you're currently operating.
posted by JustKeepSwimming at 5:03 PM on June 15 [15 favorites]


Waiting for trades also helps you as a reader avoid stories with strong premises but TERRIBLE execution.

The first 6 issues of "Copperhead" and "East of West" are really strong. Issues 10-16 of each? Miserable. I should have waited for the trades.

The book business isn't some beacon of equity and creativity, but they handle narrative execution at a much higher level than the comics industry.
posted by JoeBlubaugh at 5:03 PM on June 15 [4 favorites]


selling comics at Mapco, Shell, and grocery stores again might help
posted by wester at 5:05 PM on June 15 [9 favorites]


On in the theater lobby of the movie you just got done watching.
posted by cjorgensen at 5:12 PM on June 15 [24 favorites]


This ended up being unfortunately prophetic...

What the hell is wrong with Marvel Comics anyway?!?!

Why? Well, beyond “Saga” clearly and directly showing me that there’s a huge market for the right periodical to the right market, we’ve had our best superhero success in something like a decade with Marvel’s “Black Panther”. The first issue was our #1 best-selling title of 2016, we sold near double the copies as we did of “Saga” – and I’m sure we can sell way more than that of the right Spidey comic, in an eco-system where Spidey comics are actually something special.

People who say the new audience inherently don’t want super-heroes or don’t want periodicals are fundamentally wrong. They just don’t want them in the way they’re being offered.

With “Black Panther”, it was tons of new faces, diverse faces, genuinely excited about comics. And they were vibing on it… until Marvel saw it had a hit on its hand, and decided to push out “Black Panther: World of Wakanda”, and then “Black Panther: The Crew”. And this new audience began to leap off in droves because they don’t grasp (or want) Marvel’s publishing plan.

Seriously, our sales drop-off on “Black Panther” is significantly worse than similar titles and launches, and you can see the deflection points accelerate as the additional titles are released. Less is more when it comes to entertainment and branding – something that I said all the way back in my ninth column in 1993 – which is mostly just copying something that Joe Brancatelli said back in 1976 (!) (We’re just about to move our website, so I’m pretty positive that link is going to break in a week or two…. If it 404s when you read this try a search on “Hibbs Tilting Brancatelli”… or email me!) Adding a second “Black Panther” title doesn’t double your sales; instead it causes x% of Panther readers to walk away instead.

posted by Artw at 5:20 PM on June 15 [24 favorites]


Never mind that this particular comic clearly was not aimed at Marvel's core readership; the straight white guys who make up the majority of the direct market are not, for the most part, going to be reading this comic. If Marvel wants to expand the readership and open new markets, they need to advertise and sell in the places where the people who make up that market are going to shop. This is not some sort of arcane idea; manga, after all, found its most profitable market, young women, mostly in chain bookstores. It's not just that Marvel isn't getting it; it's that they've been aggressively not getting it for the last 20 or so years.
posted by GenjiandProust at 5:23 PM on June 15 [8 favorites]


They're really, really dedicated to the worse and least efficient delivery method possible. At this point it's so entrenched I really don't know if anyone knows how to fix it except maybe "but something that comes in more sensible packages instead".
posted by Artw at 5:25 PM on June 15 [3 favorites]


Don’t quote me on this, but I’m pretty sure that the vast majority of comic books in America are sold during Scholastic Book Fairs nowadays.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 5:33 PM on June 15


TLDR: because most people don't want to spend 7-10 dollars on 25 pages of content once a month.

There was some great pricing analysis in the Black and White Indie Filth thread from 2010. If they are $7 now, I guess it is safe to say the trend has continued :P
posted by Chuckles at 5:33 PM on June 15


Actually, I think I'll just quote the most relevant bits.. Based on my strait inflation calculation you get this:
$0.10 in 1966 --> $0.68 today
$0.35 in 1977 --> $1.32 today
$0.95 in 1988 --> $1.80 today
$1.99 in 1999 --> $2.62 today
The question of paper prices comes up, read the thread for that part. Then fairytale of los angeles posts this great Publisher's Weekly article: The Kirkman/Bendis Debates: Let’s Do the Math (archive link). I guess I massaged those numbers a bit to come up with this:
Selling 3,000 copies at $3.99 is only worth 2/3rds the income of selling 5,000 copies at $2.99. If you can manage to sell 10,000 copies, you can drop the cover price to $1.99 and still make 26% more than you did selling 5,000 copies at $2.99.
Oh, and the thread is from 2009 :)
posted by Chuckles at 5:46 PM on June 15 [2 favorites]


Generally $4-5, but the point stands. Marvel double ships A LOT now, as well, but I guess you get double the page count?
posted by Artw at 5:47 PM on June 15


I can't even find a good way to order a comic issue I want.

Recently I was looking at Black Bolt. I haven't bought a comic in years, but I heard some good things about it and thought, well, why not? I can afford to follow a series or two.

Now is the age of online everything so I looked into how to buy a digital copy. That would solve the problem of issues being a kind of inconvenient format, and make it a lot more likely that I'd keep on top of the releases.

Except, what's this. It looks like this thing called Comixology is the major way that Marvel is distributing their comics online. $4 for a license to access a single issue on their servers using a proprietary reader. If the server goes down, or you aren't online - no comic. I noped right out of that.

Out of curiosity, I hopped onto Amazon to see if I could even order an issue delivered instead of having to go to a comic shop. It looks like the only one offering a "comic" format option (rather than a $12.95 paperback) is a suspiciously new independent seller. Marvel's website doesn't even show it as a result if you do a search, in any format.

So. Okay.
posted by Kutsuwamushi at 5:58 PM on June 15 [6 favorites]


I'm also a trade reader, for the most part. Getting individual comics is a big pain in the ass for me, so I tend to wait. On the other hand, if part of a comic series launch was an opportunity to pre-order a future trade version, I'd go in on that. I knew I wanted the Hawkeye one, for instance, and I've also been looking forward to the trade version of Black Panther. A lot of people pre-order comics and graphic novels at kickstarter, essentially, and, if we're brainstorming marketing ideas, why not throw this into the pot? Get some of the money up-front in the form of people who are willing to commit to the trade paperback on the promise of a writer or artist they really like, or a premise they support (see the totally-queer Young Avengers, or Kamala Khan as Ms. Marvel—I was really excited about both of those).

The points up-thread about advertising to the people who would be most interested in these comics is a good one too. Are they advertising in gay magazines (online or print) when they have queer content, for instance? Or getting those magazines to write articles? Or having a presence at Pride marches or other community events?
posted by Orlop at 6:00 PM on June 15


As a pretty nerdy queer that is almost geeky but not as much as I should, I noticed that there isn't really much marketing push or getting us queer folks to write reviews about it. To be honest, our demographic is still pretty much forced to be word-of-mouth about it, but our labor has been so undercompensated that it just seems pretty fucked up to make us do it anyways. Queer people of color are culture makers and tastemakers, if anything, Marvel should be seeking to push us as tastemakers and using capitalism to compensate us for that work.
posted by yueliang at 6:39 PM on June 15 [2 favorites]


Trade reader here. (Also a frequent omnibus reader of print works).

I have gotten into some good series, gotten hooked, and then had the FLCBS decide to stop carrying them and such. With a trade I know I am getting so much of the title in question GUARANTEED and I don't have to worry about enjoying the read as there's really no second-hand/retail value in trades.
posted by Samizdata at 7:10 PM on June 15


Bleeding Cool has tried to help the marketing side, pushing books like Saga and BP&TC
posted by NeoRothbardian at 7:40 PM on June 15


Kutsuwamushi: you can pre-order the Black Bolt Vol. 1 trade at Amazon! 😉
posted by nicebookrack at 7:57 PM on June 15


"but I’m pretty sure that the vast majority of comic books in America are sold during Scholastic Book Fairs nowadays."

I keep wondering why there aren't low-cost comics for sale in small groceries serving low-income communities in my area. We have a huge issue with getting reading material in the hands of low-income children, and comics can be printed so cheap. But all that's available at these stores is mass-market magazines and romance novels. Where are the comic books? Where are the low-cost-printing Beatrix Potters and other children's novels? (Which Beatrix was into ONE HUNDRED YEARS BEFORE IT WAS A CAUSE.) Where are the cheap, crappy newsprint that rub off on your hands editions of Penguin classics? Why aren't these at the checkout?
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 8:05 PM on June 15 [18 favorites]


As far as why comics are in the state that they are, lemme repost the links to two essays that go into a lot of history and numbers that have been previously linked on comics threads on the blue: The Problems With Comics and Shut The Fuck Up, Marvel. (Require downloading because they're in Twine, but can be viewed in your browser.)
posted by Halloween Jack at 8:47 PM on June 15 [10 favorites]


I tried to get back into comics last year. I had a new tablet, so I got myself a subscription to Marvel Unlimited.

Logged in and went to town. Tons of titles, going back decades, stuff I always wanted to read. It was like getting to know that quiet kid in junior high, and finding out he has a basement stuffed with comics.

Except.

It kept logging me out. And then not accepting the correct password. And then locking me out so I had to go change my password.

It was so buggy that I just cancelled the service.

It's like they don't actually want people to read comics.
posted by MrVisible at 10:18 PM on June 15 [3 favorites]


Comixology usually allows you to download the issue you buy in cbr/cbz format and then read them in whatever reader you want BUT it doesn't allow it if it's a Marvel/DC comic. So I don't buy Marvel/DC comics. Problem solved I guess.
posted by SageLeVoid at 2:54 AM on June 16


Comixology usually allows you to download the issue you buy in cbr/cbz format

Yes, I read about that. They advertise that you can download your comics, but when you continue reading you find that it's only for publishers who have signed up for that. I wouldn't say it's "usually" - their selection of downloadable comics seems to be small.

So I don't buy Marvel/DC comics. Problem solved I guess.

Marvel is like a guy who keeps shooting himself in the foot and wondering why his foot hurts.
posted by Kutsuwamushi at 4:00 AM on June 16 [2 favorites]


Exactly, Eyebrows. In the 70s and 80s I could collect a few returnable coke bottles from a construction site, ride my bike to a nearby convenience store/gas station, turn the bottles in and get a 25/35/75 cent x men or Star Wars comic off a rotating rack. They were ubiquitous and so everyone had them, even poorish kids.
posted by freecellwizard at 4:38 AM on June 16 [5 favorites]


So I don't buy Marvel/DC comics. Problem solved I guess.

In more ways than one. By far the most interesting stuff in comics is being put out by publishers other than the big two these days anyhow. Image has some particularly good creator-owned titles right now.

On the subject of floppies vs trades, I find myself on the other side of the fence to a lot of the people here. I've been reading comics for the past 50 years, and for nearly all that time, it's been floppies or nothing. I'm lucky enough to have plenty of good comics shops nearby here in London, and I've got very used to that weekly punctuation point of picking up a few new books every Wednesday. I average only about one or two books a week these days - very few superhero ones among them - but I'd miss my weekly "fix" all the same.

That said, I quite agree that trade paperbacks make a much more satisfying reading experience than the brief instalments of a floppies run. Trades are a lot easier to store and find again when you want them too. I keep telling myself I should make the switch, but there's two main factors which have stopped me so far:

1) If I were to switch, I'd have to endure a longish dry spell before the first trade paperbacks replacing my current weekly floppies appear. This goes back to the junkie habits that comic collecting encourages, and to the appeals of the weekly "fix" which I mentioned earlier.

2) You can never be absolutely sure a given book will ever make it to a trade paperback collection, or if the entire series will be collected that way. A cancelled book may never see the final few issues collected at all, and other trade runs sometimes omit the odd issue that ran between one story arc and the next. By the time you're realised something's missing, finding the back issue is no easy matter.

One virtue of floppies, particularly for comics self-publishers or very small publishers, is that the ongoing sales produce a flow of income which allows the creators to eat while getting on with the next issue. This cash flow point hardly applies to the big two, however, who should be in a position to pay the creators a decent advance in the first place.
posted by Paul Slade at 4:58 AM on June 16 [1 favorite]


Not sure "advance" is really in the comics industry vocabulary.
posted by Artw at 6:02 AM on June 16


I just saw Roxane Gay speak in Brooklyn about her latest book release, and this came up. She essentially said it's because comics folks don't know how to market to people of color, since they seem to think that regular ol' white-dude comic shops are going to feel like welcoming places for people of color and women -- and they're often not.

She mentioned this in the context of just needing more people of color and women in publishing in general, comics and otherwise, because they can understand that perspective.

It's obvious, really, and actually good business! Drives me (and her) crazy.
posted by knownassociate at 7:07 AM on June 16 [2 favorites]


Wow. I knew Ta-Nehisi Coates was involved on this. It was in my head as "next time I'm in the comic shop, look for a trade and pick it up if available."

If I'd known Roxane Gay was involved too, it would've been "research the release date and go to the comic shop that day."

So I was ready to feel bad for not picking it up sooner, but then I read and find out the trade's still not available, and it's already canceled? Nope, sorry, can't feel bad about that.

Coincidentally, last week I watched this, uh, issue of Issue at Hand that explains why the only way to influence what comics get made is to put it on your pull list three months in advance. It's one of those things where you can sort of see how the system metastasized in place historically, but that's preventing the comics companies from reaching any new audiences. (Spoilers: there's a monopoly involved.)

Like, I note step one of this process is "learn what a 'pull list' is." When most other media are removing more and more barriers to accessing stuff, this simply isn't going to fly.
posted by brett at 7:16 AM on June 16 [1 favorite]


Wait, they're cancelling an arty Black Panther comic now? Right when the trailer for the movie came out and has casuals like me excited? I literally just bought Black Panther: A Nation Under Our Feet because I saw the trailer, was excited, and then was like "holy shit why didn't anyone tell me Ta-Nehisi Coates was writing comics?" And he's involved in an other Black Panther comic with Roxane Gay? This book seems literally written for me but the first I hear of it is in an article bemoaning its cancellation. So weak.

Part of my problem is I no longer buy paper books if I can avoid it. And the comic-reading experience on an iPad still isn't great. Comixology/Amazon/Kindle does an OK job with screen presentation but it can't be helped that comics are a larger format painted medium that doesn't fit on an iPad screen.

Is there anything good written about how digital sales has changed the monthly issue comic market?
posted by Nelson at 7:40 AM on June 16 [3 favorites]


I found out about the cancellation almost simultaneously with the Black Panther trailer dropping, so yeah, pretty poor timing.
posted by Artw at 7:52 AM on June 16


It kept logging me out. And then not accepting the correct password. And then locking me out so I had to go change my password.

Using it on only one device, I've only dealt with nuisances a couple of times. Seems like people who use it on multiple devices have a lot.

All the comics you can eat for $70 a year (on sale) is a good deal, but, yeah, the software's pretty bad.

Comics on a 10.1 HiDPI screen look pretty good, though -- not much smaller than a standard comics page (till there's a double-page spread).

Of course what with reading things at least 6 months after they're out, I'm even further out of the loop of having any influence on what is or isn't cancelled than I already started out what with not paying incrementally.

BTW, in multiple comics threads over the year, I've lamented that it was a crime that Christopher Priest's run on Black Panther was out of print. This was corrected a few years ago and they're now in four large volumes. One of my favorite comics runs ever.
posted by Zed at 7:59 AM on June 16 [1 favorite]


I was excited to read that Ta-Nehisi Coates was writing Black Panther, and though I had not bought any new comic regularly in some time, began visiting my local comic store and picking it up. And I liked it enough that when World of Wakanda appeared, I picked it up as well and enjoyed it too. With the movie coming out, it's crazy that they're canceling the title -- the comic store has been retroactively up-pricing back issues like Guardians of the Galaxy with every film or TV show. (I used to enjoy picking up back issues of Power Man and Iron Fist on the cheap, but not any more.)

On the subject of cost, I wonder if the decision to print everything in what used to be called "prestige format" (and came with the prestige price) is pricing readers out of the market. Perhaps they could just print comics on the old cheap paper and hold cost, and price, down.
posted by Gelatin at 8:00 AM on June 16 [1 favorite]


The only comic I read digitally on a regular basis is 2000AD - which is happily available in DRM free PDF as well as other options. Shipping is cripplingly expensive otherwise.

It usually looks great on iPad mini though sometimes the reduced page size requires a zoom - slightly more so than with US comics as it's magazine size to start with.
posted by Artw at 9:22 AM on June 16


It kept logging me out. And then not accepting the correct password. And then locking me out so I had to go change my password.

The thing that I couldn't understand about Marvel Unlimited when I subscribed a few years ago is why they had everything segregated into individual issues instead of story arcs or events. In order to read a single company-wide event, I had to bookmark each issue of each book and then write down what order I needed to read them in. This should be something that a web-based app -- a medium based on hyperlinked relationships between texts -- should be really good at. But for some reason, Marvel Unlimited assumed that I was reading everything in a strictly linear fashion.
posted by Strange Interlude at 9:23 AM on June 16 [2 favorites]


On the subject of cost, I wonder if the decision to print everything in what used to be called "prestige format" (and came with the prestige price) is pricing readers out of the market. Perhaps they could just print comics on the old cheap paper and hold cost, and price, down

Production values are up, and consequently more expensive, across the board. I'm not sure they can really go back to muddy colours on cheap paper now readers expect this.
posted by Artw at 9:24 AM on June 16


There's all kinds of problems with the direct market, single issues, and trade waiting that I don't really understand because that's economics, a subject which causes me to run to the hills in fear. What I really don't understand though is the digital distribution model for new comics. Why does a new comic on Marvel's digital online store cost exactly the same amount as a paper copy? If I could pay $0.99 an issue to read new issues same day I would. I'd then probably pick up the physical trades of the series I most enjoyed. It seems like a no-brainer to me, but I must be missing something.
posted by runcibleshaw at 12:19 PM on June 16


Partially they don't want to canibalise comic shop sales, partially the price is largely determined by one off costs they are trying to make back that are going to be there whether there is a print edition or not.
posted by Artw at 12:25 PM on June 16


I seem like I'd be the target audiance for these people. I'm white, geeky, and I've been reading non-Marvel/DC comics for a long time. I grew up on Asterix and Tin Tin, and I've been reading webcomics pretty much daily since ~2002. Heck, at one point I had 40+ I'd check on regularly. Yet I've never gotten into print comics.

1) They are expensive as heck. The one series I've ever collected all of was Transmetropolitan (Vertigo). $17.99/issue. 10 issue. $180 DOLLARS for *one* series of ten issues, that I can read all of in under two days. I mean, sure it is on super high quality glossy paper, but could you could use a few less colours, some cheaper paper and try and make it affordable?

2) I really liked Guardians of the Galaxy. I google and find a four volume series by that name. That seems like a good fit, so I borrow a couple issue and try it out. Iron man? What is he doing here? Ok, well, first volume is fun anyway, but then the second...doesn't start off at the same point? It seems I need to hunt down an issue of something that isn't Guardians of the Galaxy to read it? Also, it had about a million other characters I don't know in it, and it feels like I'm missing a ton of backstory, even though this is issue one? What the heck? Do they not print self-contained series?

There HAS been one time I've bought comics lately. IDW had all the D&D comics up on Humble Bundle as PDFs and other ebooks, so I bought them. Read one of the series, and really liked it, so I think I upped my purchase. Was 4 issues, self contained, no cross overs or backstory I didn't know. Why are these guys a small publisher while DC and Marvel are huge?

(Oh, I also bought the first issue of the Escape from New York comic, and went back for the trade. The guy offered to give me the trade minus the copy of the first issue, wrote my name down and promised to let me know when he got copies in to come buy it, but the trade never came in, and he says the publisher is known for that. So at least Marvel and DC don't do that?)
posted by Canageek at 2:03 PM on June 16 [1 favorite]


I had no idea that trade sales were not a factor for keeping book alive. That is so f'ed on so many levels.

You are Marvel and DC. You own the most valuable movie properties in the world. And you're doing a worse job at selling the books their based on than the toys that come from them. Either the books are terrible or your business model is screwed sideways.

....and I know at least Hawkeye was really good.
posted by lumpenprole at 2:19 PM on June 16


I love comics as an art form but I cannot disagree that they are terrible value for money.
posted by Artw at 2:23 PM on June 16 [1 favorite]


Artw: You mean Marvel and DC are terrible value. Webcomics are usually free to read, and paid for by ads, merch and print sales. Also there are sales like the Humble Bundles.

What I don't get is, if they want to boost print sales, why they aren't giving the first issue of each comic away for free at the movie. Want to boost Black Panther sales? Give issue #1 away at the movie with every ticket (Baen has given away the first NOVEL of series for years to boost sales on the rest. They say it helps a lot). Then, have at the back of the comic, ordering information for the rest of the series, a link to a database of comic shops (Wizards of the Coast has this in a lot of their products, so you can find local Magic events), and explanation of trades and issues, when and how to buy them and so on. Think of it as giving away an ad for the rest of the series and a guide to being a new comics purchaser in one.
posted by Canageek at 3:43 PM on June 16


Well, I don't read superhero comics, though I go to many -- not all -- superhero movies (got my tix in hand to see Wonder Woman tomorrow...). I tend to only read Terry Moore's stuff these days, currently Motor Girl, but also Strangers in Paradise, Echo and Rachel Rising. Issues are only $3.99, but really $8 because I buy them twice, once in paper and once at Comixology. Terry makes his comics available for download as well, so I get them in .cbz format and am not tied to a proprietary reader.

They should all do this. Why don't they all do this? And while I'm asking questions, where is the Strangers In Paradise movie? Or the Echo movie? So many questions...
posted by lhauser at 4:26 PM on June 16 [1 favorite]


The one series I've ever collected all of was Transmetropolitan (Vertigo). $17.99/issue. 10 issue. $180 DOLLARS for *one* series of ten issues, that I can read all of in under two days.

You've misunderstood the difference between "issues" and "trade". Transmetropolitan had 60 issues which were collected into 10 trade paperbacks.
posted by Lexica at 4:27 PM on June 16 [2 favorites]


I'm down to following just one superhero comic on Comixology. I was following Batman '66 but that seemed to have ended (or I guess got sorta continued in team-up comics, since someone in the Adam West thread mentioned one with Linda Carter's Wonder Woman), and Spider-Gwen had something happen in an event comic which I didn't read and it made me lose interest.

As a kid I never really got into comics because it seemed like a poor use of my limited funds to buy a fraction of a short story every few weeks. As an adult with more money and less time it doesn't seem quite so bad, but as a casual reader digital downloads or buying trades sounds a lot better than stopping by a comic shop every week or so to see if one of the titles I like has a new issue.

Of course, comics are far from the only industry trying to move everything over to a pre-order model, you get that on everything from video games to model trains. I'm sure management loves it because it takes the guesswork out of production and distribution. Downside is everyone else hates it. Didn't know it was coming, because you've got better things to do than track everything coming out? Too bad, they didn't make enough for anyone to have stock on hand. Did pre-order it? Too bad, turns it sucks but you had no way to know that when the orders were due. Don't follow these things but your buddy tells you about this cool one you might like? Too bad, it's already been canceled for lack of orders.
posted by ckape at 4:29 PM on June 16 [1 favorite]


Thead on Marvel sales

It's not looking good for Black Bolt, which is a crying shame. Also saddened to see Al Ewing get fucked over by an event yet again.
posted by Artw at 9:05 AM on June 19


You've misunderstood the difference between "issues" and "trade". Transmetropolitan had 60 issues which were collected into 10 trade paperbacks. That doesn't chance the fact that it was damn expensive to collect and read.
posted by Canageek at 10:50 AM on June 19 [1 favorite]




I just saw Roxane Gay speak in Brooklyn about her latest book release, and this came up. She essentially said it's because comics folks don't know how to market to people of color

It's worth mentioning that this cancellation was not only neatly timed for when the Black Panther trailer appeared, but it was the same damn day Roxane Gay was on the Daily Show, the day before her new book, Hunger was released, while she was in the middle of a ginormous tour for it.

She could've been telling people about this cool comic she was writing instead of telling them about Marvel not knowing how to market to people of color.
posted by Zed at 10:41 AM on June 22 [2 favorites]


In further news of foot-shooting timing of the cancellation, the collection of World of Wakanda comes out this Tuesday. At the same time Gay's a best seller for Hunger.
posted by Zed at 8:51 AM on June 24 [1 favorite]


Wait, What? - pretty scathing on latest Marvel event, sales, etc.
posted by Artw at 3:53 PM on June 26


Marvel's May Sales

tl:dr: everything BUT events is in the toilet, expect no positive change soon.
posted by Artw at 8:58 AM on June 29






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