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Valiant Watch: We want to be #3


Comeback kids Valiant are reentering the market with some good-looking material, based on what we’ve seen thus far, but is it enough to take them back to being the #3 publisher someday? CEO Fred Pierce chats with ICv2 on that, Cary Nord, and so on:

We understand that it’s part of Valiant’s goal to become the #3 comic publisher.
We’re trying to put the pieces of a team together to be a serious competitor down the road. Everybody does great work.  I love Marvel, DC, Dark Horse, Dynamite, BOOM!.  Everybody’s doing great work, and I find, and I think everybody is finding, that when one of the companies is successful, all of the companies are successful.  We’ve been speaking with retailers up and down the country and to a man or woman, they were all saying to us that the success of DC’s New 52 has allowed them to take more of a chance on us.  We’re hoping we can make it a bigger pie for everybody.

Valiant was the #3 company.  Strangely enough, 15-20 years ago, when Valiant was the #3 company, I was the VP of Manufacturing and Operations.  And I remember how everyone felt about the characters.  And in all of my time in the industry, even though Valiant was so long ago, people always asked me about my time at Valiant.  We have fans that are addicted to Valiant. Like certain fans are addicted to Marvel and other fans are addicted to DC.  That’s the hope.

  1. I’m sure it will be just as successful as Shooter’s revivals of the line have been because 90’s comics nostalgia has done so well in the last few years.

  2. Cory!!, I think we are seeing a strong wave of ’90’s nostalgia, and it will catch on if done right. The Dark Horse/Jim Shooter books were mediocre at best. There didn’t seem to be much buzz around Shooter efforts, but the Image, and now Valiant, books have more momentum. I’m really not that excited about it actually – the early ’90’s Image titles (and the creative direction of the industry itself) drove me away from comics completely. I’ve been back since ’03, and now I can’t remember why…

  3. I think it will be hard for Valiant to reclaim the #3 spot because a lot of people still remember the flood of #1’s that came out in that time. A lot of comic book shops got hurt with all the Image and Valiant flood that came out at that time. I think comic book shops will play it safe when ordering this time around.

  4. I agree with arrowshaft. Retailers will be cautious….still worth giving these books a chance. X-O sure looks good to me. I used to enjoy a few of Valiant titles if they can be as good as back then (at least in the initial runs). However IDW, Dynamite, DH are well established now and procude decent books, so aiming for #3 is a good goal, not sure it is quickly achievable. Good luck to Valiant!

  5. Well, its nice to have goals and all, but I don’t see it happening with nothing but revivals of characters that weren’t really even all that popular in the 90s. Speculation drove those sales, at least in the shop I worked in.

    Release something new and exciting that no other publisher is doing and then maybe that might be something to get excited about, but right now there’s plenty of warmed-over 90s rehash on the racks. I don’t see these new Valiant books standing out at all.

  6. I’m excited for this and I don’t understand why. I’m currently re-reading all my old Valiant comics in anticipation!

    I think I’m one of the Valiant fans Pierce talks about.

  7. “A company peddling decades old intellectual properties feels like a big slide backwards for comics.”

    Maybe it’s just me, but I’d rather have a company using decades old intellectual property to sell comics rathern than creators using comics to peddle their new intellectual property to Hollywood.


  8. New Valiant’s just retelling old Valiant stories, which sold millions. Valiant without Jim Shooter might as well just be Acclaim all over again.

  9. “A company peddling decades old intellectual properties feels like a big slide backwards for comics.”

    Yeah, comics IP isn’t worth a damn until it’s at least half a century old at least.

  10. They are definitely throwing a lot of money around right now with big name creators, advertising and variant covers. Will be interesting to see whether they can continue to do so when sales numbers comes and if those sales can meet expectations.

  11. I’m kind of interested in Archer and Armstrong because of the concept could stay faithful to the classic and while Van Lente’s writing has been mostly miss lately, his ideas could mesh well with the theme of the book

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