Oh speaking of comics media consolidation, which we do weekly here at Stately Beat Manor, comicbookresources.com, the longest running and biggest site about comics, has rebranded as cbr.com, and with a complete redesign. For you nostalgics out there, I saved a screen shot of the old site.
CBR was purchased by Valnet back in April, from founder Jonah Weiland. Since then they’ve been tinkering with the formula a bit, cutting some columns and, now it seems, all their blogs including Comics should be Good and Robot 6. I haven’t had official confirmation on that, but the URLs redirect to the main site, so it’s not looking good.
It’s all part of survival in the modern era. If anything, the old CBR was akin to something we had when I was growing up called “the atrocious cabinet,” a vast repository of information that was sometimes a bit hard to navigate. I know a redesign had been in the works for a long time prior to the purchase, so this comes as no surprise.
At least one of the top rotating stories on the new site is about comics. And there are still previews and so on. And the forums are still there, with, predictably old timers moaning, managing editor Albert Ching manfully trying to answer questions and one wag posting, “Jonah Weiland sold his comic book site, and what happened next will shock you!” Readers are not happy with the new look for the moment, complaining about industry standard things like large images and responsive design.
Also, the old Comicbookresources had awful pop up ads of late that froze my browser and sent bats flying across my screen. They seem to be waiting in the attic while the new redesign shakes out, but if the new look enables to site to do away with those kind of ads, than it’s all for the best.
I’m especially sad to see Robot 6 go as it was the last outpost of a long running “super blog” that at one time or another included most of the best writers about comics, including Kevin Melrose, Brigid Alverson, J. Caleb Mozzocco, and many others. “Who?” you may be asking, Exactly.
Brian Cronin’s posts for Comics Should Be Good have been retained via his author page, however.
UPDATE: Apparently the rest of the blog content will be also be integrated into the site via author pages. it doesn’t make it any easier to find.
I’m sure the hate will calm down in a few days, and people will get used to the new format. People don’t like change, but (whisper) the old site was hard to navigate too, you were just used to it.
Anyway, if you have one takeaway from this post its that I grew up in a family where built-in shelving was called an “atrocious cabinet.” That explains a lot about me and why I’m STILL here. For the moment.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.