We are nothing if not a fast-paced society, and we’re constantly moving at a more rapid clip. Technological innovations have been coming at an unprecedented rate, and the world shows no signs of slowing down. While this means a lot of great things for our standard of living, it can also have a real detrimental impact on our mental health and the way we consume things– even comics. This week on Podcorn Podcast, Brandon and Alex tackle the problem of “what’s next?” that pervades the comic book industry– the need for everyone to know what’s coming up rather than focusing on what was just released. We also take our weekly look into DC’s upcoming Rebirth, and all the ways that the publisher’s initiative seems like a throwback to the past as much as it is a hopeful look towards the future. We look at Image’s recent sales and what they mean for the industry. We ask the questions: are there too many comics shipping each month (500 in February!)? Can we gain more by doing less?
01:00 — Show begins! We dig into some of the retailer responses to DC Comics’ Rebirth that were compiled by SKTCHD’s David Harper.
07:15 — Asking big questions about the place of the direct market in modern comics sales!
13:00 — Could we create a comics chain store to rival Barnes & Noble?
21:00 — Are there too many monthly books on the shelves nowadays? Is DC temporarily killing their own sales between now and Rebirth’s launch?
25:30 — Alternatively, is DC Rebirth a jumping off point? Brandon confronts Alex’s aversion to double shipping books.
30:30 — There’s a tension between quantity and quality. Late sales negatively impact sales of single issue comics, but as famed video game creator Shigeru Miyamoto has said: “A delayed game is eventually good, a bad game is bad forever.”
34:00 — Are Saga and The Walking Dead barometers of industry health? If so, do slumping sales on one title mean bad things across the board?
40:00 — How does Image’s method of title release coordination affect its sales? If we go a month without any A-list title, doesn’t Image get hurt dramatically that month?
47:18 — The problem of “what’s next?” Instead of hyping what we have, we always are looking towards the next big thing. How does that affect the way we view what we’re given? What does it say about us? Why do journalists perpetuate the issue?
55:45 — Are the potentials readers lost by delaying the release of trades worth the back issue sales theoretically gained? How shall Generation Why change the world?
Every Wednesday, I talk about comics with Brandon Montclare, writer of the hit Image series Rocket Girl and co-writer of Marvel’s Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur series.
We gab about what we’re reading now, what books we consider classics (Brandon loves Dark Knight Strikes Again…), and the hottest gossip of the industry. Occasionally, the inimitable artist Amy Reeder (Rocket Girl, Batwoman) stops by. Check out our full show archive at podcornpodcast.com.
Intro/Outro music this week is Miss You by Blink-182, off their self-titled album Blink-182.
Visit rocketgirl.nyc for swag from Brandon and Amy!
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Alex is the New Media Editor of the Comics Beat. He is also a freelance comics editor with previous credits at First Second, Top Cow, and Papercutz. He primarily covers DC Comics and Magic: the Gathering.