Or maybe it could be released bi-weekly…my expectations aren’t totally unrealistic.

§ April 4th, 2012 § Filed under grendel, retailing, swamp thing, this week's comics § 10 Comments

So we had that little Avengers Vs. X-Men release party thingie last night…that’s where we get special dispensation from Marvel ‘n’ Diamond to release the comic ahead of the normal Wednesday street date. Well, a whole four hours ahead, I guess, since technically I could have started selling all the week’s new comics the second Felix’s paws were pointed at the witching hour*, but frankly I’ve put in enough time at the shop lately. I needs my beauty sleep…I mean, really, have you seen me?

But away, we put out the AvX #1s, and moved quite a few, which kind of surprised me since our town tends to roll up the sidewalks once nighttime rolls around, but we had a bunch of folks stroll on in and a good time was had by all. And we had bit of a mini-sale, too, so it was definitely worth staying open a little later than we normally do on Tuesdays.

I was mostly still working on processing the new comics order and pulling for the comic savers, so I tended to let other folks at the shop handle the AvX crowd. But there were a couple of things about this week’s new comics I wanted to point out:

1. Looks like Marvel is moving toward that slightly less-slick/”self-cover” format on some of their books. It’s not quite the same as the paperstock of the interior pages, but the covers ain’t as slick as they used to be. It’s not like that for every Marvel this week, but it is for quite a few of them.

2. The third issue of that Avengers movie tie-in Fury’s Big Week is out this week…and for second there I thought all our copies were damaged and missing pages. But no, it’s 20 pages of comics, the covers…and no ads. A while back Johanna was wondering what happened to comic book ads, in which it seemed like all the ads in recent Marvel and DC comics were just house ads for other Marvel and DC comics. But Fury’s Big Week doesn’t even have those…it just does away with the extra non-story pages altogether and gives you a 20-page booklet. Were previous issues of this series like this, and I just didn’t notice it?

Anyway, I guess this is the next cost-cutting device in maintaining the monthly floppy format…just plain using less paper, since they’re not making any money selling ad space on the extra pages anyway.

3. Also, Dave Sim has a new issue of Glamourpuss out. I love this comic, but God help you if you try to explain to someone what it’s about, because they’ll just look at you funny.

4. Swamp Thing is also out this week, with New Swampy finally making his debut. …I think it was worth the wait, though I wish every issue were 64 pages long, no ads, and released weekly, which I think is an entirely reasonable and economically-sound demand.

Enough about new comics…let me talk very briefly about some old comics. Reader Tom asks

I’d be happy to see an update, however brief, on the Great Grendel reread you were doing a while back… they were favourite comics of mind but I’m not sure they’ve aged well.

Yeah, I have a bad habit of not following up on things like “I’M TOTALLY GOING TO REREAD ALL OF, SAY, JUSTICE LEAGUE TASK FORCE AND REPORT BACK TO YOU” because Mike of Bloggings Future occasionally doesn’t like being constrained by plans made by Mike of Bloggings Past and I just never get around to, you know, stuff.

But I did reread all the Matt Wagner-written Grendels, and the Four Devils, One Hell mini by James Robinson, and a few of the other minis…and pretty much got burnt out/lost interest at about the same point in the various 1990s Grendel minis as I did when they were originally coming out. The minis that came out after that (including 1999′s Devil Child, which I first read during this “great Grendel reread”) tied back in to the early Hunter Rose-era of Grendel, which I have far more interest in than the future-history storylines that occupied most of the ’90s issues. I did reread all those late ’90s/2000s Grendel, but I think I’ll probably never get around to reading those few minis that I skipped originally. Ah, well…it’s not like I haven’t read enough comics.

* Yes, I know on most Felix-style clocks the hands aren’t in the shape of Felix’s paws. But I wrote it and don’t feel like changing it. So there.

10 Responses to “Or maybe it could be released bi-weekly…my expectations aren’t totally unrealistic.”

  • Dave Carter says:

    IIRC, Marvel previously announced that they were moving to the self-cover format for all of their $2.99 titles.

    Frankly, I’d be thrilled if they moved to 20 pages (+ covers) and no ads on all of their books, as that would mean I could read the comics without being interrupted almost every other page by an ad. Remember way back when DC introduced their ‘New Format’ and pushed all of the ads to the back of the book. That was great! They also did the same on a recent issue of Batwoman (due I supposed to it being all two-page spreads) and it was wonderful.

  • Old Bull Lee says:

    This blog needs more Glamourpuss talk.

  • Thelonious_Nick says:

    I used to love house ads–remember that one from the 1980s where Iron Fist is encouraging the reader to buy his comic so Power Man doesn’t get mad? They actually made me excited to buy other comics. And when I occasionally pick up a Silver Age issue, one of my favorite parts is the house ads–the covers of other issues out that month. Even decades later, they make me want to rush out and find those other issues on sale.

    But house ads now suck. They don’t actually show you what happens in the issue being advertised, often they don’t even have the name of the comic. It’s just like “here’s a picture of [insert DC/Marvel character], buy this new comic they’re in.” I can’t imagine house ads nowadays actualy have any effect on sales.

    I guess if the companies have forgotten how to make good house ads, they may as well drop them. It won’t hurt anything, and might improve the reading experience.

  • Anonymous says:

    “Swamp Thing is also out this week, with New Swampy finally making his debut…”

    I think that just about says it all.

  • adam says:

    You should read all of Justice League Task Force. It wasn’t bad for a 90′s title, especially when they had the rotating roster.

  • Anonymous says:

    How about some reviews on the first 8 issues of the New 52 Snyder Swampy?

  • Anonymous says:

    Here you go:
    http://blog.newsarama.com/2012/03/26/welcome-to-the-24-page-comic-era/

    Now get cracking on all those Swamp Thing reviews, Sterling!

  • Snark Shark says:

    “and gives you a 20-page booklet. ”

    I guess the word PAMPLET is actually appriopriatenow- they AREmore like THAT, rather than a traditional PERIDICAL/MAGAZINE.

    “Grendels”

    Grendel: War Child is good! I actually like (some) of the “future grendel” better than the hunter rose “he’s a theif fighting some weird monster-thing” Grendel.

  • Tom Wu says:

    Rude of me to ask about the reread then go on holiday for a week, apologies. I’m not surprised you faltered where you did; I think the reason we’ve seen so little Grendel in recent years is that the series has lost its way. Grendel Prime was never the equal of Hunter Rose, though it got the same billing, and though the Black, White & Red series were great Behold The Devil was a disappointment. There seem to me two directions to go: the death of Grendel Prime or telling the much-hinted-at stories of Grendels before Hunter. Whether Wagner wants to do either is open to question, and obviously his choice.

    I plan to reread Grendel at my own blog one day. At the moment I’m rereading Mark Millar’s Swamp Thing and am still in the early stages where it’s very bad. Check it out if you’re interested…

  • Anonymous says:

    How are sales on Swamp Thing? You never talk about it…