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Tilting at Windmills #261: Marvel & The Deck Chairs of the Titanic

Go read it at the Beat!!

“The Definition of Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results” — Albert Einstein (…maybe?)

(…something fell!)



7 Responses to “ Tilting at Windmills #261: Marvel & The Deck Chairs of the Titanic ”

  1. “I’m not saying “get rid of X!”, but at least change up who is doing what book to bring some fresh energy in.”

    I’ll say it. Get rid of Bendis. Maybe there was a time when he wrote worthwhile stuff (I guess?) but he seems to be poison now. He’s the only comic writer I will actively avoid on books I would otherwise be inclined to purchase. Judging from sales of titles like Iron Man, I’m not the only one. If Marvel wants to try something new, getting a different writer for every Bendis title might be a start.

  2. I’m an engineer and the math I do on a day to day basis is far less complex than the math you have to do to figure out how to order a profitable number of books. I’m not a Marvel or DC fan, but at least DC seems to be trying to help retailers profit rather than take as much of their money as possible.

    I’m surprised no one’s tried to bring back DeFalco or Shooter. Those guys seeemed to know how to sell comics on a monthly basis.

  3. I’m not sure whether the ongoing face-palm publishing strategy of Marvel Comics is primarily a failure of creative or corporate management (or both), but something needs to change at the top. They could do with a shakeup of creative teams, but probably need more of a change in senior editorial positions. I’d happily see Steve Wacker back in and calling the shots…

  4. I honestly think that audiences respond primarily to quality. If Marvel could a) hire creative teams with a real vision for their characters and then b) get out of their way, then I think they might be able to pick up some lapsed readers.

    I would happily read an X-Men comic again, or the Avengers, or the Fantastic Four (God rest their souls) if I knew that a) the creative team was going to stick around for the long-term and b) weren’t interrupted over and over again by events or sales gimmicks. Isn’t that basically why everyone reads Saga? It’s good, it’s consistent, and there’s no way it can be derailed by editorial.

    But that’s a long-term strategy, and Marvel has painted itself into a corner with short-term strategy after short-term strategy. I’m not sure they have as long of a runway to play with anymore. If they stop renumbering and rebooting their books, will they have enough sales to sustain some long-term planning? I’m seriously asking.

  5. I think there is a noticeable difference between the attitude of DC and Marvel, which is apparent when you consider the approach to these ‘one-shots’ which everyone is meant to read as a precursor to a new approach to the line.

    DC Rebirth was a clear loss leader. $2.99 US, with the clear intent of getting it into as many hands as possible, with a view to whetting interest in the new #1s.

    Legacy is (I think) $5.99, and is a viewed as a profitable opportunity for Marvel. “The readers HAVE to buy this one to know what’s going on! That means hundreds of thousands of sales at a higher price point! Yay!”

  6. MARVEL since Quesada arrived has just been a blown up version of Marvel Knights. They care more about creators than characters (editorially, not financially) and, to their credit, turning their publishing line into fanfic for big name or “hot” creators worked for a good while. But all approaches eventually run out of steam. Bendis has been creatively spent for at least 5 and maybe 10 years but it’s like they can’t conceive of Marvel existing without him.


  7. Exactly, Aussiesmurf. Exactly.

    BTW Mr. Hibbs, the link to your Tilting column doesn’t work. Here’s the one I used:


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