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Thursday, August 2, 2012


One year after the relaunch of the DC Universe with the lame-ass New 52 Marvel Comics is relaunching all of its titles with Marvel…NOW.

A mega cross-over event over 12 issues and countless cross-overs with hundreds of comics. All leading up to a whole new series of new #1 issues.

Enough is enough.

This is where Shawn James comic fan of 35 years heads for the door. As he stated before the people working in the comic book industry are certifiable.

Here’s a question to the people in the comic book industry: How many times can you do the exact same things and continue to expect different results?

*Shawn takes a deep breath and calms himself*


Marvel…Now is supposed to make the Marvel Universe more accessible and easier to follow for new readers. Characters will be dressed up in new costumes and relaunched with new #1 issues.

For the umpmillionth time.


Here we go again.

Weren’t the last dozen new #1 issues supposed to do that? Weren't some of these books just launched with #1 issues just a few months ago? 

Marvel Comics titles relaunch every 24 to 36 months. Just when readers are getting used to a series, all of a sudden the book is cancelled and relaunched with a new #1 issue.

Want to know what keeps Marvel comics from being accessible?

All these damn relaunches.

You want to know what? Instead of rebooting everything, how about hiring a good editor in chief to RUN Marvel comics? How about COMMITTING to a series for more than three years? I’d like to see a comic book series go past issue #50 for once.

Better yet, how about doing some damn promotion when sales get soft on a longer-running title? That’s what I do when my paperback and eBook sales get soft. That’s what Stan Lee, Jim Shooter and Tom Defalco used to do back in the day.

How about offering some digital comics for free so people can try them out? I offer lots of free eBooks to get people trying my work. It’s gotten me sales, it should do the same for Marvel comics.

But cancelling and relaunching stuff is easier. KDP Select revives dead sales and jump-starts indie wBut cancelling and relaunching stuff is easier. KDP Select revives dead sales and jump-starts indie writers careers on the Kindle, but comics haven’t thought to use that service to get people interested in buying comics. Marvel could make a ton of money on borrows, (about the same price as comics at retail) but nah, that’s too easy.

Print comics, that’s where it’s at.

That new #1 issue is gonna be a hit. And…In a few years it’s gonna be worth $300.00 when I pick it up in the quarter box along with the other five new #1 issues that relaunched these books just two or three years ago in a couple of months..

How about creators get out of the comic shop, head over to the Barnes & Noble and meet the people and sign autographs? Promote those Trade paperbacks ? You know that cheaper, accessible way people choose to buy comics these days? Get people talking about comics who never read them? 

Nah, that’s too hard. Cancelling a series and relaunching it with a new number one issue for the kajillionth time is much easier. Writing long convoluted stories where characters come back from the dead AGAIN or die AGAIN is much easier than doing a little marketing. Listening to customers. Getting some feedback to improve the absolutely shitty product being produced.

Captain America looks better in his overdetailed new militarized new costume just like TEH MOVIES. Cyclops needs to look like an actual Cyclops. Hulk needs armor to emphasize how he’s the strongest one there is. Iron Man’s suit is black and gold instead of red and gold like his movie colors. And Thor needs swords. Cause that Uru hammer just ain’t got that wow factor. Samurai swords are where it’s at. Along with the X-men and Avengers being on the same team.

Cause writing 18 characters in one book rs really works.

Oh and the original X-men are time travelling. The same group of whitebread losers who couldn’t sell comics way back in 1964.

But yeah, that’ll make the Marvel appear edgy hip, and cool to the over 35 readers in the comic shop already buying comics. Cause those new younger readers they want to target will NEVER see those wonderful new designs or buy those new #1 issues because they can’t FUCKING FIND THESE COMICS AT A RETAILER BECAUSE THEY AREN’T DISTRIBUTED TO PLACES NORMAL PEOPLE GO. YOU KNOW PLACES LIKE SUPERMARKETS, WAL-MART, TARGET, & ELEVEN OR A DAMN GROCERY STORE. 

*Shawn counts to ten before continuing rant. Then realizes it’s futility to talk to a brick wall.*

Y’know what? I’ve come to the conclusion that the comic book industry is FUCKED. It’s on the fast track to hell. Even with movies like The Avengers making over a billion dollars at the box office, the comic book industry that spawned those movies is pretty much screwed.

It keeps promising that nothing will ever be the same…Again.

And again.

And again.

That’s it. I’m fucking done with this industry. It’s irreparably damaged. Just a hot mess. I give the publishing division of both Marvel and DC Comics five years before they just go into reprints full-time. The people running the show now have pretty much run things into the ground.

A long time ago in a ghetto far, far away I wanted to write comics. Now I’ll just stick to YA fiction, African-American fiction, and African-American fantasy fiction. When I publish a story there it’ll be accessed by readers ten years later. And it’ll be accessible to readers ten years later unlike today’s comic books.


  1. I'm with you. They don't care-- why should anyone else?

    Today's comics creators are intellectual property caretakers. They keep reading and writing the same stuff over and over again, to an ever-aging and dwindling audience. They know it, so they've all got agents and managers and they're all trying to get Hollywood deals, so they save their "best stuff" for that. In the meantime, they take one obscure event from an issue 25 years ago and build a big "event" comic around it, decompress it so it'll run for 6 issues or so (perfect for the trade collection), and call it good.

    The funniest news I heard in a long time was when I read that Brian Michael Bendis had contracted to write a guide to writing comics.

    Fandom's not helping, either. As their numbers decrease, they seem to become even more defensive. They are the real fans, they're the ones toughing it out with the intellectual property they grew up with, and if you don't like it then you're not a real fan. They take to the message boards and comments sections to try to bully people into accepting their canonical opinion.

    And it's people who really care about quality that leave in exasperation, which means that those who remain are the ones who'll buy anything.

  2. Hear you Ricky.

    Most comics creators are phoning it in with dreams of Hollywood. I can see it in their writing and drawing, they're storyboarding for movies and TV shows. New York Comics are just a stop on the road to Burbank,CA.

    Time Warner & Disney are just letting them do whatever they want to keep the trademarks fresh. As much as I loved these characters and dreamed of writing them, I realize it's a lost cause. That's why I'm moving on.

    Bendis writing a book on how to write comics? That is funny. He's the king of exposition. It takes six issues for someone to just put a costume on when he's writing.

  3. If you didn't hate Marvel at first-what they did to Black Panther today might get you to really hating them. Lets just say Storm has more in common with Chris Brown than anyone could have thought.