The Industry

This week Chris and Walt really do bite off more than they can chew by trying to have a look at the state of the whole comic book industry, from top to bottom.

Please let us know what you thought of the show and please feel free to leave a comment in the comment field below, as always let’s please try to keep things civil.

Have you noticed structural changes in the industry? How have your habits and perspectives changed?

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Walter Durajlija
Walter Durajlija is an Overstreet Advisor and Shuster Award winner. He owns Big B Comics in Hamilton Ontario.
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19 Comments

  1. Well… its a lot to overcome. I did like the thought of comics going back to spinner racks or magazine racks and making them far more accessible! Heck… even tho you don’t care for it… imagine going back to direct and newsstand and how much more a 9.8 newsstand copy would get over direct despite the advent of direct variant covers! Something to consider.

  2. Nice show Chris and Walt. Most likely the comic book industry will collapse, only the Marvel and DC movie universe will survive, retailers will sell trades,old trades, DVDS toys Tshirts and such.
    Comic books may survive online,you buy and print your own?

    Is it just me, or is the Comic Culture show much shorter then in by gone days? Does this suggest its’ demise?

  3. Yeah I thought you bit off too much, but some good points to consider.

    I think the last five minutes were the best and I like Chris’s thought about mass customization, and I think Walt’s idea about Costco etc. is DOA. That Toys R Us/Midtown idea is a perfect example – these things never pan out because the comics are just a weird curiosity. Even in Barnes and Noble (and your anachronistic Borders), while they sell many graphic novels/collections, the comics just sat. They are too expensive for non-aficionados, and the aficionados won’t buy them there (because they are generally beat up). Chris’s idea – following on the discussion of KickStarter campaigns a couple of months ago – is where I think the future lies. I think the model of higher-end specialized comic (and toy, card, etc.) shops can compete if they have inventory that you simply can’t get online (or at least not easily and not in one place). Going back to an earlier discussion, the key to this is the people – the people need to be rabid experts, and compensated for being this (with part of that compensation being able to follow what they love as a buyer for the store).

    The point about peripherals being underappreciated is key as well. Everybody has been sensitized to this via the toilet paper problem. The upside of the scarcity problem is that it is driving innovation, so hopefully in the long run we will have more and better choices for storage etc.

  4. I think the future of comics is that they will get licensed, in the same way that IDW produces books based on Marvel property. It’s just a matter of time before DC calls it quits and smaller publishers pick up the slack as a way to keep the character brands going. Eventually, the floppies will disappear, replaced by the book format where creative folks can pay Warner to produce their own Batman story. Film canon will overwrite print history and NFTs will be the new collectible, paid for by crypto on a platform that’s run on Ethereum or some other smart contract standard. Eventually, malls will become show rooms where you can try on, test or examine a product, but the actual purchase will be made in the Metaverse, or a digital representation of the old world. At this point, fiat currency will have failed, banks will have evolved or collapsed due to crowd sourcing type of financing where you can lend out your wealth directly to the end user in return for interest. Comics shows will also have evolved and migrated into the digital world as niche NFT markets flourish in same way that the current Discord platform is the host for all sorts of interests. Soon after, the final bitcoin will have been mined, capitalism will have failed and new self reliant communities will have taken it’s place where pushers of sugary fructose products will have been replaced by caring individuals, who managed to wrestle their freedom away from the corporate elites, working together toward true prosperity.

  5. I understand Dave. Fear is a great motivator… in advertising as well as in politics. That’s how FOX gets their viewers to act, by catering to their base emotions… “socialism this, communism that”. There are studies you can find online about how conservative think is essentially a response to fear, which ties in nicely with the current state of affairs, ie; guns, the boarder wall…. vaccines. But really, all I’m doing is projecting out the stuff that’s in motion today. Yes, the weather can change, and no, the physical world will not disappear… but either way, no need to be fearful, especially since we wont be around to see the last bitcoin mined. Stay calm and carry on.

  6. Charlie, I don’t want to get into it again with you about your crazy ideas. No matter what you say, I’m with Scott – the show is definitely thirty minutes now.

  7. I wish I could take credit for all those ideas Chris, but like I said… that’s just the world we are living in. From being given 9% interest for my first bank account to paying the bank $20-30 each month is the current reality. So I’m saving $240-360 each year for stashing my cash under my mattress, which I hope roll into more comics that I can flip so that I’ll never have to say “thank you sir, may I have another” ever again. Crazy right?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIZoVO8ZyyQ

  8. I can confirm, the show is now 30 minutes. And don’t let Charlie scare you Dave, he’s just click baiting

  9. Cashier: That’s one 30 minute show, minus VAT that brings it to 23:53, thank you and please come again.

  10. Not to get off topic, but if Cavil becomes Capt Britain…

    https://www.cbr.com/mcu-henry-cavill-captain-britain/

    … does this open the door for Vindicator, or Canada’s own Guardian? It seems only fair and it would tie in nicely with X-Men canon. Alpha Flight #1 has been on the rise as of late (I don’t know why for this abundant 80’s book but anything 9.8 seems to be worth a few bucks these days). Considering how clogged up CGC has been, it’s probably worthwhile looking further out in order to get your books back in a timely manner. However, this news feels like PR maneuvering, knowing that a Calivin Ellis / Val Zod film is in the works.

  11. The other rumour that’s been floating around is Star Wars, the High Republic. Considering that Disney wants to distance the franchise from away from Lucasfilm, I’d say this particular project has a high probability. The comic series is chalk full of 1st appearances and knowing that toys are more lucrative than the movies themselves, expect this movie to be a vehicle to introduce a slew of new characters, many from the comic book series. Putting my money where my mouth is, I’ve already sent in my copies to CGC.

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2020/01/08/the-next-star-wars-movie-is-reportedly-set-in-the-high-republic-era—heres-what-that-means/?sh=3a10bcf519c1

    Also, Hawkeye launches soon, followed by Book of Boba. Kate Bishop remains popular and if you’ve been collecting the Bounty Hunter comic series… I suspect you will soon be rewarded.

    This is the way.

  12. Disney Plus Day was yesterday and 2022 is looking bright as Disney continues to fill out their streaming service with fresh new content. Their Marvel division in particular will be feeding their subscribers with a steady diet of comic book goodness. Check out their slides to see whats slated for 2022:

    https://dmedmedia.disney.com/disney-plus/disney-plus-day/marvel

    To some, being able to watch shows on your phone, computer or TV via the internet may have seemed like a “crazy” idea 20 years ago… to those who don’t know what a “newsstand” is, streaming is a natural way to consume these days. And after being chained to Bell and Rogers for most of my life… it feels pretty darn good to have cut off their shackles.

    And if you’re a speculator, retailer or some sort of vendor… this is your road map.

  13. Now, I know what you’re thinking. Why does this click baiting, gay buddhist care so much about unsubstantiated rumours? To quote Marshall McLuhan… that “the medium is the message”. Here is the result of those unsubstantiated rumours:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B4HwRTVzS8U

    There are many interpretations of McLuhan’s quote, but I think we can all agree that none of us need to be here, which then begs the question: Why? I think the answer to this may be just another crazy idea.

Please: keep it clean, keep it civil. Comments with links are held for moderation.

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