Author: Scott VanderPloeg

DC to stop shrink wrapping "most" hardcovers

DC Comics announced yesterday in its retailer newsletter Direct Channel #104 that it will stop shrink wrapping most hardcovers beginning in December.  Here’s the blurb: Please note that starting with books arriving in stores in December, DC Comics will no longer shrink-wrap most hardcover titles. DC will continue to shrink-wrap titles priced at more than $50.00 US, as well as titles that include extra materials such as sell sheets or cards. This serves two purposes: it reduces packaging which cuts cost and can be promoted as being environmentally friendly.  Of course if environment was the concern then the $50+...

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Fan Expo 2010 Day Three: Out With A Bang

Fan Expo 2010 is done for me. None of my Sunday goals were reached and the show remained packed; no last day slow down. It’s solid for the retailers but as a buyer I like bargain hunting at the end with dealers who don’t want to haul merchandise home. I wasn’t able to track Tim Bradstreet down so no sketch from him. Ethan Van Sciver still had a long list of sketches to go before mine so that was a washout as well. Chatted with Michael Cho who sold all his show art save for one piece. No surprise...

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Fan Expo 2010 Day Two: Art who?

Saturday at Fan Expo was crazier than usual: the crowds were so intense all afternoon there was a long line waiting to get in. If only the deals were that crazy… I dedicated the day to getting various hardcovers signed. Two options: snag a signature at the creator’s booth or at one of their signings. Some like Olivier Coipel and the Kubert brothers were only signing for one hour at a signing area; needless to say I didn’t get anything from them. I searched high and low for Steve McNiven but never saw him at his table. I had a chance to chat again with Darwyn Cooke about upcoming works. He’s been contemplating one or two self published collections of unseen or rare work but is looking to do them digitally. I asked about oversize reprints of his IDW works in the same format as The Man With The Getaway Face one shot but he doesn’t think that will explored until all four Parker books are published. Darwyn did say he loved seeing his work at that size as it showed all his mistakes. Chris Sprouse arrived very late Friday but was set up and ready to go when I arrived Saturday. He had a stack of pages for sale, all $40 each which is a steal in any economy. He apologized that he was charging $10 for head...

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Fan Expo 2010 Day One: Art and Hardcovers

Fan Expo 2010 started today at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.  The early bird package had a 2:00 PM entrance and there were hundreds lined up to get in: I’ve never seen a crowd that large buying a premium VIP three day show pass.  Media and vendor passes are a beautiful thing.  Art prices are continuing their dramatic increase while vintage hardcovers are scarce. My focus was artist alley and acquiring sketches from my favourite artists.  Paolo Rivera was set up and ready to go so I put my name down for a watercolor head sketch, $80.  We chatted about his pricing and size choice: he’s able to complete head shots in a reasonable time and feels $80 fits for the time committed to the piece.  A really nice guy; he was happy working for Marvel and  covers in general and wasn’t in a rush to get a creator owned work out.  I wandered by and spotted him working on my Namor head sketch: it looked stunning. Next stop was my local favourite Michael Cho.  He had a two phase art attack: creating large painted works before the show averaging $450 and doing coloured headshots for $40.  Previously Michael had done smaller painted commissions before the show in the $100 range but he said the time dedicated to the smaller works creating unique poses and researching characters ended up...

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Bound Together | Captain America The Classic Years

In 1989 Marvel decided to give some Joe Simon and Jack Kirby works the deluxe treatment in the form of hardcover reprints.  The Fighting American, Captain America and Boys Ranch were reprinted as hardcover volumes outside of the Marvel Masterworks program that was in full swing.  At the time Masterworks were focusing on silver age Marvel works so these 1940s and 1950s works didn’t fit. Captain America The Classic Years was published in 1990: two 7.25×10.25″ hardcover volumes in a slipcase.  Each volume reprinted the main story from five issues of Captain America Comics.  The content came from a...

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