Comics News Thread V: All The News Unfit to Print

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  • CrimsondudeCrimsondude Registered User regular
    According to a new survey by Publisher's Weekly, the fastest-growing demographic of comics readers are women aged 17-33.

    http://allofthefeelings.tumblr.com/post/80575370717/publishers-weekly-has-a-yearly-comic-retailers

    WiseManTobesHarry DresdenGaslight
  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular
    That's fantastic news, and not just because it increases the chance of finding a girl my age with similar interests!

    Hopefully this will be a wake-up call to companies to cut back on the skeeviness.

    CrimsondudeCentipede Damascusdurandal4532Brainleech
  • FearghaillFearghaill If there is nothing but what we make in this world let us make goodRegistered User regular
    According to a new survey by Publisher's Weekly, the fastest-growing demographic of comics readers are women aged 17-33.

    http://allofthefeelings.tumblr.com/post/80575370717/publishers-weekly-has-a-yearly-comic-retailers

    Thank you Kelly Sue and Kieron

  • FearghaillFearghaill If there is nothing but what we make in this world let us make goodRegistered User regular
    (and G. Willow Wilson)

  • AntimatterAntimatter Registered User regular
    hell, throw James Roberts in there

    More Than Meets the Eye has had letter pages consisting only of female writers

    Fearghaill
  • MunchMunch Registered User regular
    Jeff Parker's writing an Angry Birds comic, and the universe no longer makes sense to me.

    A while back, I talked about how a lot of low and middle-tier books had been taken by guys that had been Marvel or DC exclusive, or otherwise had some significant cache in the industry. The net result of which was fewer new creators getting their foot in the door with paying work, through work on books that had traditionally served that role.

    At the time, my best example was guys like Mark Waid writing Archie comics, or Greg Pak doing stuff for Dynamite.

    But, I think a dude like Jeff Parker writing a comic, based on a game where the sole objective is hurling birds at green pigs, has signaled a new nadir for the comics industry.

    CrimsondudeHadjiQuestFearghaill
  • PhillisherePhillishere Registered User regular
    Munch wrote: »
    Jeff Parker's writing an Angry Birds comic, and the universe no longer makes sense to me.

    A while back, I talked about how a lot of low and middle-tier books had been taken by guys that had been Marvel or DC exclusive, or otherwise had some significant cache in the industry. The net result of which was fewer new creators getting their foot in the door with paying work, through work on books that had traditionally served that role.

    At the time, my best example was guys like Mark Waid writing Archie comics, or Greg Pak doing stuff for Dynamite.

    But, I think a dude like Jeff Parker writing a comic, based on a game where the sole objective is hurling birds at green pigs, has signaled a new nadir for the comics industry.

    The funny thing, this being comics, is that there is a decent chance of it being good. This is the only medium where a Planet of the Apes tie-in series can also be one of the best comics in a given year.

  • GaslightGaslight Registered User regular
    bowen wrote: »
    The bacteria in your poop exist everywhere.
  • MunchMunch Registered User regular
    The funny thing, this being comics, is that there is a decent chance of it being good. This is the only medium where a Planet of the Apes tie-in series can also be one of the best comics in a given year.

    Oh, sure. I mean, it's Parker, and I'll always give him the benefit of the doubt. I'm sure it'll be about as entertaining as it could be.

    I just think it's weird to look at the comics industry of today, and contrast it with the one of just a few years ago. I feel like exclusive contracts have basically evaporated, and there's much more of a free-for-all environment among creators.

    Which is great for readers, because you get guys like Fred Van Lente writing Archer and Armstrong, Mark Waid and Dean Haspiel doing The Fox, and Christopher Hastings writing a Longshot mini-series.

    But, I feel like it's probably a bad thing for the creators themselves. I can't imagine it's easy to produce your best work, while you're coordinating with multiple editorial offices.

  • SolarSolar Registered User regular
    edited April 2014
    At the same time I think that a lot of writers enjoy the freedom they get from being able to write existing characters and also do creator owned work

    In the days of exclusives you wouldn't get Uber and Iron Man by Gillen at the same time, but these days you do, and that's cool

    And it's Marvel who have led that loosening up, once again they are far ahead of DC in the race between the big two. Marvel also seem to be realising much sooner than DC that image is going to become the third estate.

    Solar on
    Harry Dresden
  • CrimsondudeCrimsondude Registered User regular
    DC's 2013 direct market sales show slippage
    If you break DC’s sales (minus the September stunt/event issues and mini-series) into sales bands of ten thousand, it quickly becomes apparent that the most popular sales band is issues that sell from 10K – 19,999 copies. The second most popular sales band is 20K – 29,999 copies. DC also published a significant number of issues that sold under 10K by Direct Market estimates.

    The distribution used to be a bit more even, with DC selling more issues between 50K-99K, but those numbers have fallen off as 2013 wore on. Batman is still a rock for DC, the best-selling regular comic which has yet to dip below six figures of sales. Justice League and Superman Unchained both sell either in the 100K or 90Ks range. Past that things start to taper off quickly.
    4cgdrmiybdw0.jpg

    Fearghaill
  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular
    Time for a reboot I guess.

  • Centipede DamascusCentipede Damascus Registered User regular
    I wonder what Marvel's spread looks like.

  • Harry DresdenHarry Dresden Registered User regular
    I wonder what Marvel's spread looks like.

    Carol Danvers with a middle finger raised.

    Crimsondude
  • CrimsondudeCrimsondude Registered User regular
    I wonder what Marvel's spread looks like.
    Well, it maintains an unofficial cutoff point of 20,000, so I'm guessing a much more compressed distribution curve.

  • cckerberoscckerberos Registered User regular
    edited April 2014
    I was curious myself, so here's one for Marvel, based on the numbers here.

    YlOupXB.png

    One difference between this and the DC chart is that I included miniseries and they didn't.

    cckerberos on
    RingoFearghaill
  • FearghaillFearghaill If there is nothing but what we make in this world let us make goodRegistered User regular
    I'm really sorry to nitpick, but could we get the # of issues axis on the same scale as the DC one, our as close as possible? It's hard to compare the two as is

  • HadjiQuestHadjiQuest Registered User regular
    You guys could just wait a week. The publisher's weekly article says they'll be looking at marvel then.

  • PhillisherePhillishere Registered User regular
    I hope they do Image, as well. I would not be surprised if the Big Two today are actually Marvel and Image.

    Sinogue
  • FearghaillFearghaill If there is nothing but what we make in this world let us make goodRegistered User regular
    Nah, Image is a pretty distant third, but they're gaining fast.

  • FakefauxFakefaux Cóiste Bodhar Driving John McCain to meet some Iraqis who'd very much like to make his acquaintanceRegistered User regular
    edited May 2014
    DC's bad luck continues.
    Marvel Comics dollar share continued its rise, but sharper this month with their dollar share rising from 34.31% to 39.27 and their unit share does the same from 38.17% to 41.15%, possibly due to a rather highly priced Amazing Spider-Man #1. DC Comics saw their dollar share continue to dive from 25.94% to 23.65%, eleven points behind Marvel, the lowest in ages, and their unit share fall from 29.02% to 27.24%, fourteen points behind Marvel. This is almost as bad as it got before the New 52 relaunch.

    Fakefaux on
    CrimsondudeBionicPenguin
  • CrimsondudeCrimsondude Registered User regular
    Joe Quesada is emailing the old Jim Shooter blog post about the time Marvel almost took over DC to Diane Nelson.

    TexiKen
  • FearghaillFearghaill If there is nothing but what we make in this world let us make goodRegistered User regular
    Fakefaux wrote: »
    DC's bad luck continues.
    Marvel Comics dollar share continued its rise, but sharper this month with their dollar share rising from 34.31% to 39.27 and their unit share does the same from 38.17% to 41.15%, possibly due to a rather highly priced Amazing Spider-Man #1. DC Comics saw their dollar share continue to dive from 25.94% to 23.65%, eleven points behind Marvel, the lowest in ages, and their unit share fall from 29.02% to 27.24%, fourteen points behind Marvel. This is almost as bad as it got before the New 52 relaunch.

    nah, that's not bad luck

    that's bad decisions. "Luck" implies that DC didn't bring this on themselves.

    Centipede DamascusFakefauxorthancstoneSolarTexiKenGaslightCrimsondudeMike DangerBlankZoe
  • maximumzeromaximumzero I...wait, what? New Orleans, LARegistered User regular
    Jesus Fucking Tapdancing Christ why is it so difficult to get in contact with Boom Studios? I placed an order for the six-issue subscription of Bee & Puppycat for my girlfriend, but immediately realized afterward that there was something else I wanted to order and it would take me over the free shipping threshold.

    But there's no simple "Cancel Order" button like there is on most competent websites. I've e-mailed two different contact addresses and made a comment on their facebook page and I've yet to hear back from anybody. Here's hoping they cancel it (and refund my money) before the damn thing ships. And I'm not placing the new order until the old one is cancelled/refunded.

    FU7kFbw.png
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  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular
    Iirc, boom recently got rid of their forums. I'm really not sure what's going on with that company.

  • TexiKenTexiKen talk about a hole in one Registered User regular
    It feels like (and this is in a lot of things really) there's no more middle ground. And in comics it's either these small handful of writers working together for these small direct to readers type ventures, or you have the big three now. Boom, IDW, Dark Horse, I get a sense they won't be around in a while or in the way we know them, the comic versions of Sega. Maybe it's just me on that.

  • maximumzeromaximumzero I...wait, what? New Orleans, LARegistered User regular
    Iirc, boom recently got rid of their forums. I'm really not sure what's going on with that company.

    So I managed to get the order canceled shortly after my previous post. I then placed a new order for a six-issue subscription of Bee & Puppycat along with the Adventure Time Annual 2014 #1. That was on the 15th.

    The order arrived today. My girlfriend called me up to ask me if I intentionally sent her two of the same issue.

    Fuck. There goes that surprised ruined.

    They sent her two cover variants of Bee & Puppycat #1 with no Adventure Time issue to be found. Ugggghh. Looks like I'm sending off another e-mail.

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  • MunchMunch Registered User regular
    So, I wondered when this would happen.

    To recap: Valerie D'Orazio, former DC Editor/Occasional Superheroine blogger/former Friends of Lulu president, learned that Chris Sims was co-writing X-Men '92, one of the many upcoming Secret Wars tie-ins, and pointed out that Sims used to harass her online.

    She took to Twitter to deride Sims and Marvel, which prompted Sims to write a blog post where he apologized, prompting a blog post from D'Orazio.

    And basically, Twitter's been weird ever since. Lot of people carefully trying not to name names, or couch things in language that doesn't put the blame solely on one party. And some people misappropriating the issue, to push their misogynist agenda, because Twitter can be a real fuckin' cesspool, sometimes.

    The whole thing is interesting to me. I've been a fan of Sims for a long time. I really enjoyed D'Orazio's scathing inside-look at DC, around the time of Identity Crisis.

    A couple weeks ago, I actually looked up D'Orazio, because after being such a polarizing figure in comics for a few years, she'd basically seemed to vanish. I found her Twitter had a low follower count (it's exploded, with the recent news), she was doing freelance editing for a work that looked pretty amateurish, and she'd recently Kickstarted a horror comic. She seemed to have stuff going on, but it was nothing like the stuff she was doing, just a few years ago, writing commentary that was seen as very influential, and getting hired to pen Punisher books.

    And it was certainly nothing like the success Sims had in the intervening years, writing an OGN for Oni that recently won an ALA award, being one of the most important people in the landscape of comics criticism, and getting a gig writing a Marvel mini-series.

    So, I'd wondered when the guy who championed diversity and social justice, would wind up being taken to task for bullying one of the leading feminist voices in comics, at the time. Note that a lot of what he wrote about D'Orazio, came out within a year or so of the linked Comics Alliance article. So, it's not like he didn't know better.

    You can read a bit about his interactions with D'Orazio here. Read his review of her four-page Punisher short, in Girl Comics. Read the comments. Listen to him discuss the review on this episode of War Rocket Ajax (from 1:48:30 to 1:53:0), where even his longtime collaborator, Rusty Shackles, tells him the review read like a hit piece.

    And what strikes me, is that even back then, he's saying the same thing he's saying now, about how he's only reviewing the work, and not trying to make it personal. And even he doesn't seem convinced.

    On the other hand?

    I'm a guy who's said dumb, shitty stuff online. Dig deep enough into my post history here, and I have no idea what you'll find. Probably a lot of stuff from a dude in his early twenties, who took comics way too seriously.

    So, I'd like to believe that people are wholly capable of change. And I know that the way someone represents themselves online, is not always a reflection of their true character. My brother sometimes says things online, that make me raise my eyebrows. But, I know no kinder, more thoughtful human being. Sims' friend and fellow comics pro, Rachel Edidin, talks about the Chris she knows, right here.

    All that aside, I do feel like Sims probably hurt D'Orazio's career, in a way it didn't recover from. The comics internet of a few years ago, pre-Tumblr, pre-social justice awareness, was very different in a lot of ways. I fully believe a leading male critic, could cripple her career. I mean, her Punisher: Butterfly one-shot was only a few thousand in sales, below the main and MAX titles, despite being a $4.99 comic. It didn't perform so badly that it'd justify her career withering on the vine. And she was a comics professional with years of experience, so I doubt she was terrible to work with.

    I'm very curious to see where this story goes, in the coming days. Especially with regards to how or if Comics Alliance will cover it, or if it'll be quietly pushed aside.

    And I'm curious to see what steps Sims will take, to not just apologize, but try to make it right. If any.

  • SatanIsMyMotorSatanIsMyMotor Registered User regular
    Out of curiosity, what are the steps that could be taken to make it right?

    Having read the apology, I'm not sure what else one could do. What he did was definitely below board and completely inappropriate. I don't necessarily buy that he tanked her career and I don't think there's really any rational way to prove that out one way or another.

    She's obviously extremely angry and hurt by the whole ordeal - and that's her right. I do think that people can change however and Sims should be shown some props for at least trying to apologize.

    Agreed with you that I'm curious to see this play out.

  • DJ EebsDJ Eebs Moderator mod
    I think the right thing for Sims to do here, is, as he has been doing lately, to acknowledge that he did this, confirm that he was wrong, and then...I don't think there's anything he could do to "make it right," other than to just leave her alone entirely. She doesn't seem to want anything to do with any sort of apology or attempt at reconciling with Sims, and she's well within her rights to just let him dangle on the vine. Aside from her career suffering, she's had to deal with lasting psychological problems as a result.

    I've mentioned it in the SE thread, but I've said pretty awful shit in my time. Not a lot of it is on the internet, but it's happened. I'd like to think I've grown as a person, but any amount of growth I've experienced doesn't erase the shitty things I've said or the hurt they might have caused. All I can do is to work on being better in the future, and try not to repeat any of that shitty behavior. And all I can reasonably expect or hope in this situation is that Valerie D'Orazio continues to recover from what happened and that the legion of shitheads that tend to follow stories like this leave her alone. How people react to what Chris Sims did is going to be a very personal decision, and if people choose to boycott his work or anything along those lines, it'd be hard to blame them.

    I appreciate that he's learned, at the very least, not to pull anything like that anymore. His being an increasingly progressive and inclusive voice in the industry won't magically erase anything that he's done wrong, but having one less abusive personality in comics and one more progressive one is still a positive gain.

    MunchSatanIsMyMotorTexiKenHarry DresdenSolarBlankZoeMartini_Philosopher
  • Lindsay LohanLindsay Lohan Registered User regular
    edited March 2015
    The part that confuses me is that thus far all I've seen is that Chris Sims didn't like her as a writer or personally and made it very clear in reviews and it tainted his reviews of her stuff. I don't really see any accusations that he harassed her outside of these attacks of her work. Is she holding him responsible for the other people that jumped on his bandwagon? I'm just confused on her definition of bullying and harassment. Is what he did much worse than the constant criticism we see of Liefield's art or Snyder's films? It feels like I'm missing something in the story.

    Lindsay Lohan on
  • DJ EebsDJ Eebs Moderator mod
    There's some stuff in her statements that indicates he did a lot more than just give her a bad review, and in his statement on the matter, he confirmed that she's telling the truth.

  • Lindsay LohanLindsay Lohan Registered User regular
    I agree with you then - the best he can do is say he feels bad about it and move on and continue to take positive steps professionally and personally.

    Presumably he should also come clean privately with his employer about what occurred and let them determine if they feel it is something they are comfortable with if she decides to air all the details publically in the future - but that is obviously between him and them and not ours to judge.

  • MunchMunch Registered User regular
    Out of curiosity, what are the steps that could be taken to make it right?

    Having read the apology, I'm not sure what else one could do. What he did was definitely below board and completely inappropriate. I don't necessarily buy that he tanked her career and I don't think there's really any rational way to prove that out one way or another.

    She's obviously extremely angry and hurt by the whole ordeal - and that's her right. I do think that people can change however and Sims should be shown some props for at least trying to apologize.

    Agreed with you that I'm curious to see this play out.

    Honestly, I don't think there is anything he can do. Like you said, she wants nothing to do with him, so any kind of conversation to resolve the issue, is off the table. There's no reasonable recompense to give her, really.

    But, I don't feel like he really deserves kudos, just for apologizing. First, he privately apologized to David Gallaher, comics writer and D'Orazio's husband. He only apologized publicly when D'Orazio directly called him out. And while he explains why, and I think it's valid, it still makes him look like he was cajoled into it. Then, he posted a link to his blog post, with comments disabled, sans explanation. He abandoned Twitter for the rest of the day, while people started ganging up on D'Orazio. Only this morning did he return, to tell everyone to stop attacking her.

    I feel like he's tried to avoid having a conversation about it, which isn't a good look, on a guy trying to apologize and show he's changed.

    Rue Walker's assessment, vis a vis the importance of earnestly asking the offended party what can be done to resolve the issue, is kind of interesting.

    But yeah, I don't think there's really anything to be done. Just always try to do better, and keep moving forward.

    SatanIsMyMotor
  • JyrenBJyrenB Registered User regular
    Munch wrote: »
    But, I don't feel like he really deserves kudos, just for apologizing. First, he privately apologized to David Gallaher, comics writer and D'Orazio's husband. He only apologized publicly when D'Orazio directly called him out. And while he explains why, and I think it's valid, it still makes him look like he was cajoled into it. Then, he posted a link to his blog post, with comments disabled, sans explanation. He abandoned Twitter for the rest of the day, while people started ganging up on D'Orazio. Only this morning did he return, to tell everyone to stop attacking her.

    This highlights a lot of the issue. She's STILL being attacked. All over again. Just for bringing it up. Hell, I've seen people on these very forums saying she's doing this for personal gain or something similar which...fuck. THIS is the problem.

    What should Sims do? I don't know. But an apology doesn't actually matter. It doesn't change anything. We're willing to accept one because we're worried about being in his position, but that ENTIRELY IGNORES her. He's not a victim here, yet we treat him like one. And I'm not even saying his apology isn't sincere (though writing one like that after being publicly called on it is...not the best). I believe it IS sincere. But it doesn't matter. Because this shouldn't be about him, it should be about her. And everything about an apology is about him, including how everyone on the internet is talking about it.

    It's a shit situation. There isn't really a good outcome here.

    Beyond all of this, it brings two things to mind for me.

    First, that we've got a large number of reviewers or bloggers or similar people all who have cultivated an audience based on them being 'funny' but in reality just being angry or mean. This doesn't help anyone. It makes an audience laugh, so we like it, but it doesn't do any real good when it comes to actually reviewing and it can be really easy to get lost in that and for things like this to happen. How often has it happened that we DON'T hear about? How many people just won't say anything for fear of getting attacked (see what's happening to D'Orazio now)? Discourse about comics is fucked in a lot of ways, and I can't help but think this has done more harm than good.

    Second...I look at parallels here and in the Brian Wood situation and I'm bothered. While that has since been swept under the rug and mostly ignored, there was quite a large crowd that refused to buy his books anymore. Many of them still don't, from what I understand. And this was talked about loudly and in the open and now I see many of the same people just trying to pretend this situation with Sims didn't happen. It is, at best, uncomfortable.

    So yeah...I dunno about this. People can change, people do change, but that doesn't change the past itself. And you know what? This shit is STILL HAPPENING in comics.

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    MunchTexiKen
  • LanglyLangly Registered User regular
    I just don't see what people expect to happen. He apologized, it was 6 to 8 years ago. So like, what, people shouldn't buy his book? People who weren't even affected by the actions of someone who has publicly turned himself around and is an active voice for change in the community?

    That's silly. If she doesn't want an apology or to talk to him, fine, she doesn't have to. But I know that if people were held to the fire for everything they've ever said having a negative impact on someone, in perpetuity, there would be a lot of people out of work and shunned by the community at large who are no longer engaged in those activities.

    I also think that looking poorly on the fact that he didn't automatically dress himself in sack cloth publicly on the internet before her series of tweets is weird. Do you normally publicly announce your apologies to people you have wronged? Is it anyone's business other than the person wronged?

    TexiKen
  • LanglyLangly Registered User regular
    Like I see all this hand wringing about "I don't know what to do about this"

    and the answer is nothing. The dude was mean, 8 years ago. He is no longer a negative public figure and has changed. He apologized, then he publicly apologized. He did not commit a crime, he did not lie about it. The end.

    TexiKenGaslightfrandelgearslipLinespider5BlankZoe
  • Lindsay LohanLindsay Lohan Registered User regular
    It's also worth noting that the criticism she posted was against Marvel for hiring him. I'm going to guess that he had to work with Marvel to figure out who would reply and with what wording and by what method. It's likely not as easy as him reading her messages and shooting back a public response. The criticisms of him disappearing off twitter or taking too long to tell people to back off of her may not be fair given the fact she called out Marvel, not him, and therefore he probably had to tread carefully.

  • JyrenBJyrenB Registered User regular
    It's also worth noting that the criticism she posted was against Marvel for hiring him. I'm going to guess that he had to work with Marvel to figure out who would reply and with what wording and by what method. It's likely not as easy as him reading her messages and shooting back a public response. The criticisms of him disappearing off twitter or taking too long to tell people to back off of her may not be fair given the fact she called out Marvel, not him, and therefore he probably had to tread carefully.

    I highly doubt he would have worked with Marvel to put together a statement on this. This isn't generally the kind of thing Marvel would get involved with in regards to a freelancer. It's much more likely he wanted to step back and not make things worse or have to deal with what was likely a mess on his own twitter feed. All completely understandable things, really.

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  • DelduwathDelduwath Registered User regular
    edited March 2015
    I'm gonna second @Munch and @The Geebs That Knows Everything About Animorphs: I, too, have said some really dumb things in my time that I really regret. Some part of it had to do with me being young and having a very narrow viewpoint of the world, but that's no great comfort.

    Anyway, as I was reading @Munch's post, I realized one of the big differences between saying/doing some crummy things offline and then changing your ways, and the same thing only with the Internet:
    - If you do crummy things in real life, and then change your ways over time, your old offenses eventually fade away. Some things people forget, some things are eroded and softened by time, and generally they just fall out of the spotlight. Your current-day persona, your latest actions, have some chance of displace the memory of who you used to be.
    - If you do crummy things online, you carve those actions into stone. You can be the sweetest soul, now, and say and do the nicest things on Twitter, but it's trivial for someone to go through your history and pull up something where you shit one someone - hell, even pull up something from when you had a bad day and vented on Twitter. Show someone those two Tweets side by side - the terrible one from five years ago and the sweet one from last night - and people will give them equal weight. Yeah, they have different timestamps, but here's you being jackhole. It's hard for your current deeds to displace who you used to be.

    Delduwath on
    TexiKen
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