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  1. #121
    Mighty Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GlennSimpson View Post
    I don't happen to believe crossovers are the cause of comics dropping sales. I am more inclined to think that the growth in other entertainment options, along with the limited distribution, are much more to blame.
    I agree with limited distribution. Comics NEEDED the spinner racks and the magazine racks to snag kids when they were out and about. Comic shops are fun, but they only preach to the choir. They aren't any good at getting NEW fans.

    Growth of other entertainment? I never buy that. Comics have ALWAYS had competition. Kids never had a ton of money and always had to chose what to spend it on. Whether it was Pokémon cards, Nintendo, Pogs, action figures, THE ARCADE... There were a billion places to dump your allowance. Now days Pokemon and Magic are... well... still Pokémon and Magic (can't believe that lasted this long) and Pogs may be fidget spinners... Arcades are now tablets Apps and Cassettes are Digital music... but Competiton was always there... and Comics survived even THRIVED to the point of collapse amongst other forms of entertainment.

    Biggest issue I see is that they are not advertised for a new generation... and aren't written for a new generation. They've just been cut out completely.

  2. #122
    Ultimate Member MajorHoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    I agree with limited distribution. Comics NEEDED the spinner racks and the magazine racks to snag kids when they were out and about. Comic shops are fun, but they only preach to the choir. They aren't any good at getting NEW fans.

    Growth of other entertainment? I never buy that. Comics have ALWAYS had competition. Kids never had a ton of money and always had to chose what to spend it on. Whether it was Pokémon cards, Nintendo, Pogs, action figures, THE ARCADE... There were a billion places to dump your allowance. Now days Pokemon and Magic are... well... still Pokémon and Magic (can't believe that lasted this long) and Pogs may be fidget spinners... Arcades are now tablets Apps and Cassettes are Digital music... but Competiton was always there... and Comics survived even THRIVED to the point of collapse amongst other forms of entertainment.

    Biggest issue I see is that they are not advertised for a new generation... and aren't written for a new generation. They've just been cut out completely.
    Problems with spinner rack distribution: there's no money in that for anybody.

    DC and other companies that still provide newsstand copies have the problem that if they aren't sold, DC makes no money; they're returnable, and it doesn't matter how little the stores do to try and push them. (Comic book shops, on the other hand, don't have the luxury of returning unsold copies unless the publisher allows that, as DC has done for certain issues.) As for the retail stores, comic books are more hassle than they're worth. They can make more money from many other items without the effort of trying to constantly clean up the comic book racks or having to restock them with new issues while preparing the old, unsold issues for returns (by stripping off the covers to prove they weren't sold; nobody wants to deal with the cost of returning entire unsold comic books).

  3. #123
    Mighty Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MajorHoy View Post
    Problems with spinner rack distribution: there's no money in that for anybody.

    DC and other companies that still provide newsstand copies have the problem that if they aren't sold, DC makes no money; they're returnable, and it doesn't matter how little the stores do to try and push them. (Comic book shops, on the other hand, don't have the luxury of returning unsold copies unless the publisher allows that, as DC has done for certain issues.) As for the retail stores, comic books are more hassle than they're worth. They can make more money from many other items without the effort of trying to constantly clean up the comic book racks or having to restock them with new issues while preparing the old, unsold issues for returns (by stripping off the covers to prove they weren't sold; nobody wants to deal with the cost of returning entire unsold comic books).
    What can I say... It takes money to make money. On one hand they complain there isn't money in things like spinner racks... and in the next breath they complain that kids don't buy their books.

    Kids LOOOOOVE Superheroes. I'm a substitute teacher and Every class there are at least 5-6 kids wearing superhero gear. T-shirts, backpacks, tennis shoes, toys... Everything is SPider-man or Batman or Justice League... They eat it up! If you put books out where they can find it, then you'll create new customers. If you don't... then they aren't going to come find you.

    Comic companies have a self-defeating attitude that they're only still making comics out of habit or tradition. All their focus is on movies now, they don't really care if the books bottom out and die. It's going to be a problem.

  4. #124
    Ultimate Member MajorHoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    . . . Kids LOOOOOVE Superheroes. I'm a substitute teacher and Every class there are at least 5-6 kids wearing superhero gear. T-shirts, backpacks, tennis shoes, toys... Everything is SPider-man or Batman or Justice League... They eat it up! If you put books out where they can find it, then you'll create new customers. If you don't... then they aren't going to come find you.

    Comic companies have a self-defeating attitude that they're only still making comics out of habit or tradition. All their focus is on movies now, they don't really care if the books bottom out and die. It's going to be a problem.
    But, do the kids love reading superhero comic books, or are they influenced more by movies / animated versions / superhero video games / action figures (and other toys)?

    (By the way, hope all is going well with the subbing gig. I use to do that for grades K-8 (and sometimes pre-K) for about eight years and subbed for practically EVERYTHING at one time or another, including as a librarian. Never did cafeteria, guidance, or school nurse, though.)

  5. #125
    Ultimate Member Lee Stone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MajorHoy View Post
    But, do the kids love reading superhero comic books, or are they influenced more by movies / animated versions / superhero video games / action figures (and other toys)?

    (By the way, hope all is going well with the subbing gig. I use to do that for grades K-8 (and sometimes pre-K) for about eight years and subbed for practically EVERYTHING at one time or another, including as a librarian. Never did cafeteria, guidance, or school nurse, though.)
    I think kids like to read more than people give them credit for.
    It's possible that if the opportunity to read something interesting presented itself, the same ratio of kids today would read as when we were kids.

    I believe most of the myth that 'kids don't read' is perpetuated by adults that don't want to relinquish the icons of their childhood to another generation, and would rather have the things from their childhood 'grow up' with them.
    "The definition of all ages is it’s not just for little kids." - Greg Goldstein, President of IDW.
    Currently reading: Doom Patrol, Micronauts, ROM.

  6. #126
    Mighty Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MajorHoy View Post
    But, do the kids love reading superhero comic books, or are they influenced more by movies / animated versions / superhero video games / action figures (and other toys)?

    (By the way, hope all is going well with the subbing gig. I use to do that for grades K-8 (and sometimes pre-K) for about eight years and subbed for practically EVERYTHING at one time or another, including as a librarian. Never did cafeteria, guidance, or school nurse, though.)
    it's my first year subbing as a second job... and it's been an adventure for sure. Preschool-high school, ideally a couple times a week.

    As for reading? Honestly, while they aren't reading actual comics... there are a lot of easy reader books involving the justice league or Superman or star wars and those 5-minute stories featuring Avengers that actually ARE rather popular. Kids in general (always a few exceptions) don't like to read at all as it's new and hard for them... but yeah, I do believe that if they had ACCESS to more things to read, the more they'd likely get hooked.

    Kids in general are REALLY easily manipulated. If one kid talks about how cool something is... then 5 kids are going to want to a part of that too... next thing you know you have a new(ish) fad starting up. Doesn't matter if it's a beyblade or a foil card or spinning thingamajig, The fact that one of their peers thinks it's awesome... means THEY want it too!!

    My nephews are hilarious... they are always coming home to tell me about how awesome a sports team is or a new game is or whatever... If I ask 'why' the thing is awesome... they just go blank. This team/card/driver is the best... because they are the best! Everyone KNOWS that!!!

    Pokémon frustrated me a lot... I actually considered building a deck since every present he wanted was more cards, so I thought I'd bond a bit... but he's got hundreds of cards... and NO interest in actually playing the game. The kids just look at them and trade them and admire the shiny foil... Any strategic value or game play is completely secondary. They have no idea what they are about...

    But THIS one is the best!!! O.o

  7. #127
    Ultimate Member Lee Stone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    I agree with limited distribution. Comics NEEDED the spinner racks and the magazine racks to snag kids when they were out and about. Comic shops are fun, but they only preach to the choir. They aren't any good at getting NEW fans.

    Growth of other entertainment? I never buy that. Comics have ALWAYS had competition. Kids never had a ton of money and always had to chose what to spend it on. Whether it was Pokémon cards, Nintendo, Pogs, action figures, THE ARCADE... There were a billion places to dump your allowance. Now days Pokemon and Magic are... well... still Pokémon and Magic (can't believe that lasted this long) and Pogs may be fidget spinners... Arcades are now tablets Apps and Cassettes are Digital music... but Competiton was always there... and Comics survived even THRIVED to the point of collapse amongst other forms of entertainment.

    Biggest issue I see is that they are not advertised for a new generation... and aren't written for a new generation. They've just been cut out completely.
    I have to agree.
    I started buying comics in 1982, at the age of 10. And I actually started reading my brother's comics a couple years earlier.
    I also had a ton of Star Wars action figures, watched Saturday morning cartoons (they were still a thing), as well as the after-school kid blocks with Superfriends, Batman, The Adventures of Superman, Brady Bunch and Gilligan's Island.
    Video Games hit big in the mid-80s, but I was still buying comics while playing arcade games. Matter of fact, in the last days of comics in convenience stores, a friend and I would walk to the nearest Circle K/7-11 and buy a couple comics then throw a dollar or two into Shinobi.
    And I had a Nintendo and a Sega Genesis, but neither stopped me from buying comics.

    I was never into sports, however. I was more of a bookworm, as I was more 'imagination-inclined'.
    I think there's kids like that in every generation.

    And I think adults (especially adults that don't have kids) also forget that there are libraries, book fairs and Scholastic reading clubs in 1st to 6th grade schools, and that they didn't freeze in time when they were last in them. They still get new books and new materials for kids ages 6 through 12.
    "The definition of all ages is it’s not just for little kids." - Greg Goldstein, President of IDW.
    Currently reading: Doom Patrol, Micronauts, ROM.

  8. #128
    Ultimate Member MajorHoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lee Stone View Post
    . . . Video Games hit big in the mid-80s, but I was still buying comics while playing arcade games. Matter of fact, in the last days of comics in convenience stores, a friend and I would walk to the nearest Circle K/7-11 and buy a couple comics then throw a dollar or two into Shinobi.
    And I had a Nintendo and a Sega Genesis, but neither stopped me from buying comics...
    ----------------------
    ...And I think adults (especially adults that don't have kids) also forget that there are libraries, book fairs and Scholastic reading clubs in 1st to 6th grade schools, and that they didn't freeze in time when they were last in them. They still get new books and new materials for kids ages 6 through 12.
    One of the things that stands out to me was the idea that, as a kid, you would "walk to the nearest Circle K/7-11".
    These days, is it the majority of the kids who might still walk downtown, unsupervised by adults, and just stop into stores they want to go to?
    Where I live, there are fewer and fewer independent stores that might have been the type of place more likely to have comic book displays and such, and that also factors into the equation of whether it's "worth it" to the stores themselves to carry comic books. There was one chain of supermarkets in my area (Stop & Shop) where there were a few locations that had a large selection of magazines and maybe comic book spinner racks (not very well maintained, but they were there).
    During the past +/-five years or so, every time they've reconfigured those store locations, the end result has been smaller sections for magazines and the removal of comic book spinner racks.
    Hell, Marvel comics doesn't even provide comic books for newsstand distribution these days (they haven't for quite a few years now). I can still find a limited selection of single issues among the magazine sections at Barnes & Noble book stores, but I honestly don't know how many copies they wind up selling there.
    (Also worth noting: DC finally gave in and raised the cover price on the newsstand versions of the main DC comic books from $2.99 to $3.99, but still price the newsstand versions of the kid-friendly books like Scooby-Doo and Looney Tunes at $2.99.)

  9. #129
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    What can I say... It takes money to make money. On one hand they complain there isn't money in things like spinner racks... and in the next breath they complain that kids don't buy their books.

    Kids LOOOOOVE Superheroes. I'm a substitute teacher and Every class there are at least 5-6 kids wearing superhero gear. T-shirts, backpacks, tennis shoes, toys... Everything is SPider-man or Batman or Justice League... They eat it up! If you put books out where they can find it, then you'll create new customers. If you don't... then they aren't going to come find you.

    Comic companies have a self-defeating attitude that they're only still making comics out of habit or tradition. All their focus is on movies now, they don't really care if the books bottom out and die. It's going to be a problem.
    Please remember that we're not just talking about the comic book companies here, but we're also talking about retailers and distributors. And that the news stand and magazine racks themselves are dying slowly because distribution is labor intensive and low margin. The companies turned to the direct market because they were being pushed out of news-stand distribution in the the 1970s and 1980s and it's not going to change in the 21st Century.

    And let's also remember that casual fans and kids in particular are just not going to read the multi-part, arc-oriented stories that the direct market encourages. They want a story in one piece, in one gulp, no matter what the size. The irony here is that done in ones are frequently disdained by the current readership.

  10. #130
    Ultimate Member Lee Stone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MajorHoy View Post
    One of the things that stands out to me was the idea that, as a kid, you would "walk to the nearest Circle K/7-11".
    These days, is it the majority of the kids who might still walk downtown, unsupervised by adults, and just stop into stores they want to go to?
    Where I live, there are fewer and fewer independent stores that might have been the type of place more likely to have comic book displays and such, and that also factors into the equation of whether it's "worth it" to the stores themselves to carry comic books. There was one chain of supermarkets in my area (Stop & Shop) where there were a few locations that had a large selection of magazines and maybe comic book spinner racks (not very well maintained, but they were there).
    During the past +/-five years or so, every time they've reconfigured those store locations, the end result has been smaller sections for magazines and the removal of comic book spinner racks.
    Hell, Marvel comics doesn't even provide comic books for newsstand distribution these days (they haven't for quite a few years now). I can still find a limited selection of single issues among the magazine sections at Barnes & Noble book stores, but I honestly don't know how many copies they wind up selling there.
    (Also worth noting: DC finally gave in and raised the cover price on the newsstand versions of the main DC comic books from $2.99 to $3.99, but still price the newsstand versions of the kid-friendly books like Scooby-Doo and Looney Tunes at $2.99.)
    I lived in a small town.
    About the time we were walking to the store down the road, the population in my town was around 18,000 (and it pretty much still is).
    And the nearest comic shop was well out of our reach at 50+ miles away.

    And last I was there, kids still walked to the convenience stores. But now they spend their money on sodas and candy. There's nothing else there for them.
    The game shop and Walmart are both on the same side of town (at the same location, even), meaning they're out of walking distance for a vast majority and they would need a ride. And kids, being kids, would simply walk to the convenience stores (and fast food places, especially Sonic with its outdoor seating) when they hung out with their friends.

    When I worked at the game shop, parents would drop their kids off on Saturday morning when they went to Walmart to shop for groceries, then come pick them up when they were done. And the kids would just loiter around and play the displays until they came back. Or they'd get bored and walk over to Walmart.
    "The definition of all ages is it’s not just for little kids." - Greg Goldstein, President of IDW.
    Currently reading: Doom Patrol, Micronauts, ROM.

  11. #131

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    ditto!!! What is with his JLA covers?! Every one features the crotches of the various JLA members (Barry really gets this treatment every issue) as they get flung into the air... At my shop every issue we're all like "there he goes again...."

  12. #132

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    Quote Originally Posted by ThomasBlake View Post
    I don't know about King. He's more of a Batman family kind of guy. Not sure he has the right qualities to do a JSA comic despite being a good writer.

    Definitely yes on Fabok though.
    How about Mark Waid and Ivan Reis. Dream team, I know that won't happen...

  13. #133
    #MakeMineMilkshake CaptCleghorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MajorHoy View Post
    Problems with spinner rack distribution: there's no money in that for anybody.
    I knew a merchant who refused to carry the 15 cent comics and only carried the 25 cent giants because they got him more money and it wasn't worth it to waste store space on smaller profits. It was over 45 years ago and already there were small independent stores considering return on space.

    Magazines in general are dropping in popularity, at least the paper versions. We see a lot fewer than there were back in the "good old days". Most of these now are weeklies. Putting a weekly on a shelf means a profit every seven days. A monthly means a profit every 30. While comics would probably beneifit from expanded distribution and availability, the world for that isn't what it used to be.

    If I had a solution, my resume would be in both Marvel and DC's boxes.

  14. #134
    Astonishing Member AlexanderLuthor's Avatar
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    Digital provides nearly universal distribution...so I don't think this is much of a problem now. In fact, I suspect comic shops will largely be gone in the next 5 years which makes me sad

  15. #135
    Amazing Member BooCoo's Avatar
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    At this point I'm not really certain what type of JSA needs to exist. It's already been 'brought back' numerous times. But I would like to see Obsidian and Jade again for sure. The powers that be screwed with Robinson's concept and the last version went off course.
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