Rolling Comic Books 2020 Visions

Message Bookmarked
Bookmark Removed

Here's a note of some hope from the always excellent Beehive Books that I am passing along here to those that can use it:

We're instituting a pay-what-you-can policy on our digital editions. If you can't afford our prices on eBooks, just shoot us an email at info @ beehivebooks.com, and we'll send you any of our titles free of charge.

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Friday, 3 January 2020 19:34 (three months ago) link

Was just thinking about 2020 Visions yesterday! Love early Delano but never got around to that one.

Drive Like a Demon From Steakhouse to Steakhouse (Old Lunch), Friday, 3 January 2020 19:37 (three months ago) link

TIL the Bryan Talbot Grandville books are a direct reference to a 19th century French artist: http://www.tcj.com/j-j-grandville-a-matter-of-line-death/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=j-j-grandville-a-matter-of-line-death

Daniel_Rf, Saturday, 4 January 2020 11:48 (three months ago) link

https://www.polygon.com/comics/2020/1/9/20995875/politics-in-comics-dc-marvel-superman-trump-lois-lane-art-spiegelman

honestly, ewing's immortal hulk strikes me as the most explicitly political book in mainstream comics; it just doesn't go TRUMP TRUMP FACEBOOK TRUMP in the text

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Wednesday, 15 January 2020 16:15 (two months ago) link

It's been coming pretty close recently!

Daniel_Rf, Wednesday, 15 January 2020 16:55 (two months ago) link

indeed, but i love that ewing allows the subtext to be that; it allows him to get utterly crazy with the story without running afoul of marvel's twitter troublemaker policies

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Wednesday, 15 January 2020 17:00 (two months ago) link

https://www.instagram.com/p/B7jX3OujYIH

Chuck_Tatum, Monday, 20 January 2020 23:57 (two months ago) link

two weeks pass...

Going to a Kieron Gillen “Guardian masterclass” tomorrow in London on how to write comics and stuff. Will report back! I’ve quit Die as I found it too difficult to follow/boring but I generally like his Marvel stuff (more than the indies tbh)

Chuck_Tatum, Tuesday, 4 February 2020 17:58 (two months ago) link

Was caught unaware of the new Forbidden Planet Glasgow. To start with I was dismayed by sheer quantity of merchandise and more of the bloody Funkopop but as I was leaving, I realized there is an upstairs (exclusive Frank Quitely art created for the stairway?) and there's more of everything and some new stuff the never had. More prose books than they've had in years (admittedly a lot of it looks like old stock), so I was quite impressed overall. Hope this goes well.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Sunday, 16 February 2020 03:10 (one month ago) link

Funkopops are everywhere and are the most loathsome things.

Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Wednesday, 19 February 2020 04:15 (one month ago) link

They recently opened a huge retail store in Hollywood: https://www.funko.com/hollywood-1

You have seen the heavy groups (morrisp), Wednesday, 19 February 2020 05:28 (one month ago) link

Funkopops are everywhere and are the most loathsome things.

OTM, just fucking hideous.

Daniel_Rf, Wednesday, 19 February 2020 10:27 (one month ago) link

The funkopops and other merch are, needless to say, what keeps Forbidden Planet Glasgow afloat. Certainly not comics or graphic novels. If and when the funkopops craze dies away, I imagine a number of comic shops will be in pretty dire straits financially.

It's nice to have more space to browse in Forbidden Planet Glasgow - the old Buchanan Street shop was a no-go zone on a Saturday, it got so crowded - but their new back issue section is rubbish. Poor selection and high prices.

Ward Fowler, Wednesday, 19 February 2020 10:35 (one month ago) link

tbf I avoid the Forbbiden Planet in London because it mostly feels like a shop for geek culture merchandise, stick to Orbital and Gosh which seem to be keeping afloat (knock on wood)

Daniel_Rf, Wednesday, 19 February 2020 10:38 (one month ago) link

I suspect they do keep some shops afloat, but if that is what it takes, let the industry die.

Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Wednesday, 19 February 2020 11:06 (one month ago) link

Comic shops have had to rely on this kind of merchandise to stay float for decades, whether it's collectible card games or beautifully detailed busts of questionable taste. I'm fine with it. GameStop/ThinkGeek occupies a lot of that market, and modern chains like Newbury Comics and FP make it something like 95% of the store.
(Though I do kind of want to let the industry die to kill its ridiculous ordering system.)

Nhex, Wednesday, 19 February 2020 13:35 (one month ago) link

funko pops are the backing currency of comics stores, much like petroleum underpins the petrodollar

mh, Wednesday, 19 February 2020 14:58 (one month ago) link

These vast seas of inert, blankfaced fuckwit things, huge pockets of landfill in waiting.

Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Thursday, 20 February 2020 02:27 (one month ago) link

but enough about the current ruling class, let's talk funko pops

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Thursday, 20 February 2020 02:30 (one month ago) link

lol

Daniel_Rf, Thursday, 20 February 2020 10:43 (one month ago) link

i dunno who at marvel thought that 2020 was the perfect time to introduce a character called 'brittania' (not 'britannia' for some reason) draped in the union jack as part of something called 'the union' but i suspect it's not gonna be entirely well-received on this side of the pond

They wanted her to give them heroes. Meet Brittania in "The Union" #1, coming in May. #MarvelComics pic.twitter.com/EFpW956OBH

— Marvel Entertainment (@Marvel) February 18, 2020

Generous Grant for Stepladder Creamery (bizarro gazzara), Thursday, 20 February 2020 10:48 (one month ago) link

Last year, the main comic book mart in London gave over a large part of its floorspace to funko pop dealers - they drew an almost completely different crowd from the usual smelly old comic book fans - much younger, many more female fans. So I think there is the possibility of using these (basically harmless if useless) model toys to broaden and grow the comics audience a little bit; not sure most comic book stores would know how to go about this tho.

Ward Fowler, Thursday, 20 February 2020 10:49 (one month ago) link

It's not entirely clear most comic book stores would want to!

Andrew Farrell, Thursday, 20 February 2020 10:53 (one month ago) link

dunno who at marvel thought that 2020 was the perfect time to introduce a character called 'brittania' (not 'britannia' for some reason) draped in the union jack as part of something called 'the union' but i suspect it's not gonna be entirely well-received on this side of the pond

dunno if he created the characters but this series is written by Paul Grist

Fantastic. Great move. Well done (sic), Thursday, 20 February 2020 10:58 (one month ago) link

I mean, Captain Britain is already a thing in Marvel, and the team will also feature, er, Union Jack.

Debuting in a five-part series spinning out of the forthcoming Empyre storyline, The Union teams Union Jack — a hero who first appeared in 1976’s The Invaders No. 21 — with four all-new characters, each one representing different countries in the U.K.: Snakes from Northern Ireland, Kelpie from Scotland, The Choir from Wales and team leader Britannia.

So yeah I'm going with Britannia as the least worrying of these, particularly if she's darker without the light source that appears to be coming from her cleavage.

Andrew Farrell, Thursday, 20 February 2020 11:03 (one month ago) link

hmm, maybe it deserves more benefit of the doubt then, but either way someone at marvel marketing needs a starter guide to uk politics xp

Generous Grant for Stepladder Creamery (bizarro gazzara), Thursday, 20 February 2020 11:03 (one month ago) link

'the choir' from wales is cracking me up tbh, maybe this will be good after all

Generous Grant for Stepladder Creamery (bizarro gazzara), Thursday, 20 February 2020 11:04 (one month ago) link

I'd argue investing more in manga produces the same result. Customers in Gosh and Orbital (and the Gosh reading group!) pretty young and diverse.

Not that I begrudge comic stores stocking some of those funkos.

Daniel_Rf, Thursday, 20 February 2020 11:07 (one month ago) link

I think Snakes might actually be a clatter of snakes in a trenchcoat!

Andrew Farrell, Thursday, 20 February 2020 11:08 (one month ago) link

snakes in a trenchcoat / two bits

Generous Grant for Stepladder Creamery (bizarro gazzara), Thursday, 20 February 2020 11:08 (one month ago) link

yeah I'm going with Britannia as the least worrying

call her by her name

Fantastic. Great move. Well done (sic), Thursday, 20 February 2020 11:19 (one month ago) link

Her name's Britannia.

Andrew Farrell, Thursday, 20 February 2020 11:26 (one month ago) link

It's ok. I know how it's spelt.

— paul grist (@mistergrist) February 18, 2020

Andrew Farrell, Thursday, 20 February 2020 11:29 (one month ago) link

feel we should honour and respect the intent of the legal author itt

Fantastic. Great move. Well done (sic), Thursday, 20 February 2020 11:49 (one month ago) link

well, there it is

Why have Marvel created a UVF mural? https://t.co/710LwfR30l

— Jamie (@jamieplsstop) February 20, 2020

Generous Grant for Stepladder Creamery (bizarro gazzara), Thursday, 20 February 2020 16:02 (one month ago) link

I hope the funkopop owners and their inheritors believe in recycling instead of binning when the time comes to decide.
One of the greatest comic shop successes had to be one with the least craft.

Are all big manga successes ones with anime versions? Are some fans reluctant to read unless there is a version to watch?

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 22 February 2020 17:10 (one month ago) link

For all the stereotype of geek culture being for loners I think there might even be too much emphasis on community and sharing because nobody seems to want to try anything unless there is versions in different mediums, merchandise and a busy fanbase ready to talk to you. Surely all the crap like funkopop is just to show other people your bedroom and all the stuff you like?

Just imagine book and music stores being half merchandise. Funkopop of bands and writers you cant even find in the store anymore.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Sunday, 23 February 2020 15:46 (one month ago) link

large US chain Barnes & Noble is about 1/4 random merch like that and fancy notebooks!

mh, Sunday, 23 February 2020 16:04 (one month ago) link

... and record megastore Amoeba Music is basically half merchandise these days!

Ticket Tout (morrisp), Sunday, 23 February 2020 16:06 (one month ago) link

(well, maybe 1/3)

Ticket Tout (morrisp), Sunday, 23 February 2020 16:08 (one month ago) link

I’m not sure what it’s like in 2020, but five years ago the physical store chain that sold the most vinyl records in the US was Urban Outfitters, which is a clothing/miscellaneous junk chain. Most records sold overall was Amazon.

I wouldn’t be surprised if B&N moved more graphic novels and trade paperback collections of comics than local comic shops in a lot of areas

mh, Sunday, 23 February 2020 16:26 (one month ago) link

Funko Pops are easily found in all chain bookstores

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Sunday, 23 February 2020 17:32 (one month ago) link

Great fucking walls of the things.

Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Thursday, 27 February 2020 01:15 (one month ago) link

three weeks pass...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Gq3qVqJL10
Fun!

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Saturday, 21 March 2020 18:47 (two weeks ago) link

Diamond not shipping anything after 4/1. Death of the direct market?

Unparalleled Elegance (Old Lunch), Monday, 23 March 2020 22:13 (one week ago) link

Hah! The way we live now - how will covid-19 change us?

Andrew Farrell, Monday, 23 March 2020 22:25 (one week ago) link

I am gonna be really sad if my local shop goes under, I was already a patreon patron :(

Οὖτις, Monday, 23 March 2020 23:18 (one week ago) link

Marvel already made a Heroes-World-style attempt to wipe out the DM last week, by offering enormous pandemic discounts to (in functional effect) online mail-order retailers

Dollarmite Is My Name (sic), Monday, 23 March 2020 23:36 (one week ago) link

I should probably email my local shop and ask them what they want me to do... I'm sure they'll stay open as an eBay store as they did before they had a physical storefront, but I'll be sad if they end up closing down, even with their problems getting my holds every week.

Nhex, Monday, 23 March 2020 23:40 (one week ago) link

I told my store (Mega CIty in Camden) I'd pick up and pay for everything when it's safe in a few months, and offered to help if they had any £££ issues in the meantime.

I assume it'll be Comixology-only for a while, then nothing at all. Who knows? I wish there was a way to buy online editions through my local store.

Chuck_Tatum, Tuesday, 24 March 2020 19:02 (one week ago) link

Marvel already made a Heroes-World-style attempt to wipe out the DM last week, by offering enormous pandemic discounts to (in functional effect) online mail-order retailers

sic, how would discounts for retailers cause the DM to collapse? Because the discounts will stop if/when physical comic shops re-open? Because the discounts are in effect a loan that will leave retailers forever in debt to Marvel? Because by offering incentives that other comic companies can't match Marvel hoped to secure a bigger slice of a rapidly shrinking market?

Ward Fowler, Tuesday, 24 March 2020 20:01 (one week ago) link

By giving a huge (supposed) boost to all retailers at the exact moment when brick-and-mortar shops are taking the biggest customer-based hit in the 50-year history of the market, and days before many of them are directly ordered to stop trading, it's effectively giving a massive advantage to online sellers at the expense of those who have actually done hand-selling, promotion, marketing etc for years and decades.

forever in debt to Marvel... secure a bigger slice of a rapidly shrinking market

These too, especially the latter, and in the specific way they did with Heroes World: they outright prefer a retail landscape that a) they control all the terms of, and b) does not offer non-Marvel product at all.

Dollarmite Is My Name (sic), Tuesday, 24 March 2020 20:17 (one week ago) link

are there online sellers of note of the monthly titles that aren't also brick and mortar stores?

absolute idiot liar uneducated person (mh), Tuesday, 24 March 2020 20:21 (one week ago) link

"buyer's club"-like enterprises and eBay-focused folks, yes. but it also provides an incentive for owners who do both to lay off staff, disenfranchise customers with catholic or non-Marvel-focused tastes, and switch strictly to selling corporate product online, at the expense of stores who have spent careers directing their energy into serving the best interests of customers and the creative field alike.

if the only stores that survive are doing subscription and flipping tulips, the actual market no longer exists.

Dollarmite Is My Name (sic), Tuesday, 24 March 2020 20:36 (one week ago) link

catholic tastes? huh?

Nhex, Tuesday, 24 March 2020 21:36 (one week ago) link

catholic tastes? huh?

...? The narrowing of margins, the rise of spined comics and then destruction of the international bookstore market (and concomitant shifting the business model of the '80s-surviving publishers), and the aging of the superhero customer have all been major factors in increasing one-on-one festival sales as a proportion of artist's sales, but walking into a shop is still the best method for a reader to assess and then purchase author-driven comics.

Dollarmite Is My Name (sic), Tuesday, 24 March 2020 22:55 (one week ago) link

ah ok. sorry, i've actually never heard the term catholic (little c) used before and just looked it up

Nhex, Wednesday, 25 March 2020 14:23 (one week ago) link

oh lol

Dollarmite Is My Name (sic), Wednesday, 25 March 2020 18:26 (one week ago) link

Diamond not shipping anything after 4/1. Death of the direct market?

No shipment this week for the UK, I just learned. And understand that your 'after' there might actually be 'on'?

Andrew Farrell, Wednesday, 25 March 2020 20:54 (one week ago) link

Half-price sale on Fantagraphics gift coupons (Fantabucks) for the next two days. All their books for the next season have been stuck in China for months already, so you can hold onto the credit or dig through the catalogue.

Dollarmite Is My Name (sic), Wednesday, 25 March 2020 21:07 (one week ago) link

I should amend my original breaking story, as I understand that Diamond will still be shipping warehoused material, just nothing newly-published.

Unparalleled Elegance (Old Lunch), Wednesday, 25 March 2020 22:47 (one week ago) link

I'll say it right now, "Stephen Bissette has sent you a friend request" is not something I thought I'd ever read.

Doubling down on out of date information (aldo), Tuesday, 31 March 2020 13:48 (four days ago) link

Cool. Is he mostly doing film journalism these days or still working on his dinosaur comics?

Robert Adam Gilmour, Tuesday, 31 March 2020 15:26 (four days ago) link

Oh yeah, that reminds me that I was pleasantly surprised to see his pieces in one of the genre rags (Screem? Monster!?) I was picking up for a while.

Unparalleled Elegance (Old Lunch), Tuesday, 31 March 2020 15:46 (four days ago) link

Bissette say hi to me

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Tuesday, 31 March 2020 16:00 (four days ago) link

Bissette very publicly quit his dinosaur comics, and the comics industry altogether, in 1999 when Diamond raised their reorder threshold once their monopoly was established (after Marvel's previous Heroes-World-style attempt to wipe out the DM). Video Watchdog closed in 2017, but I don't think he'd been writing regularly for it for a long time - he's been a full-time lecturer at CCS for fifteen years.

He does have a 700-page hardcover monograph on The Brood out next month in the UK, though.

Dollarmite Is My Name (sic), Tuesday, 31 March 2020 16:18 (four days ago) link

Speaking of the major parts of it attempting to wipe out the DM, apparently AT&T is going to continue releasing weekly comics digitally through the pandemic.

Dollarmite Is My Name (sic), Tuesday, 31 March 2020 16:20 (four days ago) link

The monograph is out now, or at least mine is because I blew through it over the weekend and is why we are now friends.

It's amazingly wide-ranging (I suppose unsurprisingly given the length) and looks at most of the takes on the film in real depth and breadth, with a real insight into things I never knew about the Canadian film industry.

Doubling down on out of date information (aldo), Tuesday, 31 March 2020 16:31 (four days ago) link

"DC Comics has also announced they are looking into ways of getting single issue comic books into stores without using Diamond Distribution." according to Charles LePage's ComicsList.

Andrew Farrell, Tuesday, 31 March 2020 16:32 (four days ago) link

Bissette on Cronenberg? Cool!

mh, Tuesday, 31 March 2020 16:33 (four days ago) link

I thought that Bissette was still working on Tyrant (his dinosaur thing) as a very long term project that wouldn't be finished for years. Saw him talk about it on his blog, but can't be certain that was it. It was in a semi-rant about why he wasn't willing to collaborate with new comic writers he didn't know, that he and many other comic artists have their own comics they want to do; for these pitching writers not to assume that comic artists are just sitting on their hands because they haven't had steady comics coming out.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Tuesday, 31 March 2020 16:47 (four days ago) link

as a very long term project that wouldn't be finished for years. Saw him talk about it on his blog

Sure, but he hasn't even blogged about sketches or prints for sale since the end of 2013, let alone discussed narrative work* - drawing a page or two a year, and needing to redraw the 80-odd published pages from 1995 before re-publication due to changes in scientific consensus, puts "for years" into perspective, on top of how many of them ago he wrote that.

*(I went to the pub w/ him after sitting in on one of his first-year classes that October, and tsked about his long- and medium-form blogging all having moved to Facebook: at the time he said it was because student-aged kids mediated all their internet through Facebook, so it was the only way to engage them.)

Dollarmite Is My Name (sic), Tuesday, 31 March 2020 17:15 (four days ago) link

https://www.sothebys.com/en/series/dc-complete-the-ian-levine-collection

I4n L3v1n3 is selling his complete DC Collection as a single lot. It's not an exaggeration to claim this might be the biggest comics auction of all time.

Doubling down on out of date information (aldo), Tuesday, 31 March 2020 19:44 (four days ago) link

wow. i wonder what the reserve is.

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Tuesday, 31 March 2020 20:25 (four days ago) link

too many comics imo

a struggle to make meat-snacking fit (bizarro gazzara), Tuesday, 31 March 2020 20:32 (four days ago) link

gonna just stack em on my coffee table as I make my way through reading em all

mh, Tuesday, 31 March 2020 20:33 (four days ago) link

love that it's a reading collection and not slabbed at all

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Tuesday, 31 March 2020 20:38 (four days ago) link

Speaking of the major parts of it attempting to wipe out the DM

Diamond has stopped paying publishers.

Dollarmite Is My Name (sic), Tuesday, 31 March 2020 20:53 (four days ago) link

what do people make of this

https://bleedingcool.com/comics/today-the-comic-shops-direct-market-was-saved/

Οὖτις, Wednesday, 1 April 2020 15:05 (three days ago) link

It seems like it might be the best option to allow business to continue as close to normal as possible, but I also don't really know how many smaller publishers still have yet to embrace digital.

Pretty sure in the longer term, Diamond is gonna need to get the boot (or have its monopoly broken, at the very least). One week into this and they're already unable to pay their vendors. The corporate entities behind the Big Two are almost certainly gonna be asking why the entire business model rests on the back of an entity with (apparently) no liquidity whatsoever.

Unparalleled Elegance (Old Lunch), Wednesday, 1 April 2020 15:15 (three days ago) link

"Our Last, Best Hope for a Piece"?

why the entire business model rests on the back of an entity with (apparently) no liquidity whatsoever.

May or may not be relevant: Geppi himself has apparently been bleeding money like an artery was cut for the last 14 years

Dollarmite Is My Name (sic), Wednesday, 1 April 2020 18:30 (three days ago) link

Slightly off-topic (haven't finished the video but the occasion is a prose horror anthology about a fictional Hammer/Amicus-esque film studio) but a longish interview with Bissette seems appropriate enough
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C4NwwskeW3E

Robert Adam Gilmour, Friday, 3 April 2020 17:12 (yesterday) link

He was great on Joe Dante's podcast!

Daniel_Rf, Friday, 3 April 2020 17:23 (yesterday) link

lol, he really needed three episodes on that

donald failson (sic), Friday, 3 April 2020 17:43 (yesterday) link


You must be logged in to post. Please either login here, or if you are not registered, you may register here.