I was on Facebook on Friday reading the pots of the DC Comics resistance movement (a proud member) and there was a guy on there who was sounding defeatist on seeing that DC’s sales were up for June.
I don’t want that kind of negative talk to spread among those against the New-52. It’s counterproductive.
I’m urging all comic fans who hate the New 52 to keep fighting. Only continued resistance to the Didio regime at DC Comics will lead to Warner Brothers finally getting the message and firing him and taking DC Comics publishing division in a better direction.
Fans, artists and writers, this is a marathon, not a sprint. And in a marathon, it’s not how you start, but how you finish. As someone who has been in the publishing business for over a decade, I can tell DC fans from personal experience that this is a long haul business. And it requires patience, endurance, drive and determination to achieve your goals. The longer you stay in the fight, the more progress you’ll make towards getting where you want DC to go.
Every day DC’s editors’ come out and say something stupid like “we only publish comics for 45-year-olds alienates one or two more customers.
And with the way they mistreat creative talent they further drive a wedge in between them and the writers and artists needed to create new titles.
In addition to the way DC mistreats its creators, it alienating its vendors. Since the New 52 became forced on them Companies like Mattel just don’t feel as passionate about DC Comics as they did five years ago. DC Product languishes on shelves at retailers like wal-mart and Target (if it ever gets there) and when it arrives most just pass it by for other Mattel products such as WWE or Monster High.
It’s clear to me DC Comics’ editorial regime is falling apart internally. No one smart wants to work there with clueless Dan Didio out-of-touch Jim Lee and incompetent Bob Harras running a company with no direction and no concrete plan for the future.
And more and more customers are walking away from DC Comics. Fans just have to keep up the good fight by voting with their wallets. If you don’t accept the New 52 as the status quo, the status quo will change. There’s only so many DC Comics comic shops can order before they eventually wind up being stuck with worthless product the way they were back in the early 1990’s when the back issue market crashed.
Incompetent business regimes have fallen due to customers walking away. Comic fans we have to keep up the pressure on DC Comics.
I’ll give you some examples of change that transpired due to customers walking away:
In the late 1970’s NBC run by Fred Silverman was in last place. By 1982 he had been replaced by Brandon Tartikoff.
Tartikoff rebuilt NBC and by 1984 had built it back into a competitive network that dominated TV ratings with first place finishes for five straight years.
In 2003 Dawn Ostroff came to power at the CW as the head of programming. After running lifetime and UPN into the ground, she was determined to turn the CW into Lifetime Lite with a focus female oriented shows. Her obsession with making the CW into a girls’ network took the networks’ ratings into last place.
In 2010 CW had enough of last place finishes and fired Ostroff. With Ostroff gone, The CW now features a mix of programming for male and female viewers and is steadily trying to re-establish its identity.
In 2001, Jeff Zucker took over programming at NBC. He flooded the schedule with reality programming and dramas for over a decade. Thanks to his incompetent leadership, NBC was in fifth place behind FOX and on the brink of bankruptcy again.
When it was time to sell the network to Comcast the first thing they did was get rid of Jeff Zucker. Finally after ten years of mediocre programming and last-place finishes, NBC is making a serious effort at rebuilding itself into a competitive network.
Sooner or later it’ll be Dan Didio’s turn to wind up on this list.
In a corporation, you can only go on for so long making bad business decisions before executives at the very top get tired of hearing your excuses. After four or five years of constant failure there was no way for Silverman, Ostroff, or Zucker to hide behind the declining numbers that transpired on their watch.
Didio, Lee and Harras will be held accountable for their decade of failure. It’s only a matter of time.
Someone at Warner will eventually realize that Didio and his merry morons can’t keep blaming the instruments or the chefs for their inability to cook up stories that make the DC Universe sing. They’ve been given a new universe of characters, yet over the past two years they keep making the same mistakes they made over the last decade with the old DC Universe.
After ten years clearly the proof is in the pudding. These guys just don’t know how to publish entertaining comics. When you’re given one of the best catalogs of characters, the finest creative talent and unlimited capital for promotion and you still lose readers, then maybe it’s not the DC Universe that’s the problem. Maybe it’s just the fact that Dan Didio doesn’t know what the hell he’s doing.
There was never anything wrong with the DC Universe or its catalog of characters. For 60 years under competent leadership like Jeanette Kahn and Paul Levitz DC Comics entertained readers of all ages. It’s not until Dan Didio came along and published Identity Crisis that DC lost its way. Since then DC has been directionless. But this is what happens when one publisher has no publishing experience, the other (Lee) has driven a company into bankruptcy, and the editor in chief (Harras) ran another company into the ground back in the 1990’s.
We didn’t need a new DC Universe in 2011. And we don’t need 52 comic books on sale every month to get new readers now. What Warner Brothers needs to do is get rid of the three incompetent people running DC Comics into the ground and hire an new editorial team focused on producing books for readers of all ages.
I believe that with a new editorial team focused on working with creators towards crafting stories that maintain the mission and spirit of DC Comics that DC can get itself back on track. There are twenty million new younger readers out there eager to get their hands on a DC Comic. And their parents’ would be eager to share their favorite heroes with them if we can just let those creators produce content for them.
But first we need to replace this dysfunctional editorial regime with that new editorial team to start publishing books to reach those new readers. But in order to get that change, we DC Comics fans have to stay in the fight. This is a marathon, not a sprint!