Yes, “buck” is supposed to be singular.

§ March 28th, 2018 § Filed under blogging about blogging is a sin, retailing § 7 Comments

Hey, I keep forgetting to mention that Mike over at Zombie Cat Bacon is doing a rundown of comics blogs linked at a couple of the weblog update sites (such as the immortal Comics Weblog Update-a-Tron 3000) and seeing who’s active, who’s not, who’s moved on to other formats, who’s transcended this world of pain, who’s naughty, who’s nice, and so on. That link up there goes to the most recent post, but the previous installments are mostly on the main page and the next page back.

It’s interesting, if a little…I don’t know, melancholy I guess, since a lot of the folks I thought of as “my fellow comics bloggers” have, probably wisely, found other things to do, leaving me and a few others as the last standing members of the old folks…er, old guard still doing whatever it is we think we’re doing. Meanwhile, you young folks with your Tumblrs and your Mastodons and your Snapgrams will forge ahead with your New and Now comics commentary while I’m still posting about how comics aren’t like how they were back when I was a kid, while trying to open up my Geritol with my weak, gnarled hands.

Of course comic blogging is all going to end with Johanna and I fighting each other with broadswords on a desert plateau somewhere, while Neilalien looks sadly down upon us from whatever multidimensional plane to which he’d long since ascended.

• • •

Here, let me write a little about comics so it’s not just blogging about blogging again:

One of the recent comics retail phenomenons is of course the recent increase in demand for issues leading up to The Big Anniversary Issues, Action Comics #1000 and Amazing Spider-Man #800. To a small extent, some of the sales increase, at least in the case of Marvel’s books, may be attributable to the gradual rise in purchases due to the recent, and already about to be rescinded, “Marvel Legacy” initiative, as I wrote about here. In the case of Spidey’s book, however, the primary reason seems to be a combination of whatever is going on the Green (or, rather, Red) Goblin, a new evolution of a classic Marvel villain, plus the fact that Amazing Spider-Man sales had been kinda eh lately which means a “scarcity” of copies in comparison to the number of people trying to get their hands on them. They’re Hot, They’re Rare, People Snap Lots of Copies off Shelves, They’re Even Rarer and Hotter Now. You know the cycle.

Action Comics I’ve certainly noticed a small bump in sales as we approach #1000, but not quite the same “hotness” since I’ve had pretty good luck getting reorders on recent issues. A nice side effect is that the lenticular covers for the “Oz Effect” storyline, which, er, I may have had a few extras for and thus left on the rack, are selling again.

Now the trick of course, as has been noted, is trying to figure out how these titles are going to sell after hitting the big double and/or triple zero milestone…made especially trickier as we’ve got some changes in status quos coming to both (yet another relaunch for one, Big Name Writer for the other). As I’m pretty sure I’ve already discussed somewhere already (oh, wait, it was here), the relaunched Spider-Man I’m going to have a lot easier time figuring numbers on (the assumption being that ASM sales will likely shrink back to where they were before), while for Bendis coming onto Superman, I’m going to have to extend all my sales-estimating powers. I think it’ll do well at least at first, but how well, for how long? That’s what they pay me the big buck to figure out, so let’s hope I can.

7 Responses to “Yes, “buck” is supposed to be singular.”

  • ScienceGiant says:

    You know, Mikester, I bet Johanna tastes like honey lemon

  • Turan, Emissary of the Fly World says:

    There is something definitely off in ACTION COMICS #1000 and SPIDER-MAN #800 appearing at more or less the same time. How did that happen? I mean, SPIDER-MAN #1 appeared the same month as ACTION COMICS #298 (and ACTION was a monthly then, whereas SPIDER-MAN was bi-monthly for its first few issues…and that is not getting into the period when ACTION was published weekly, which should have run up the gap).

    Did Marvel retroactively include some of the spin-offs and mini-series in SPIDER-MAN’s count? Old-timer that I am, I remember that something like this happened with FAMOUS MONSTERS OF FILMLAND–its issue number suddenly jumped ten spaces, which was justified by adding the run of MONSTER WORLD, a short-lived magazine from the same publisher.

  • Turan, Emissary of the Fly World says:

    I should have added: FAMOUS MONSTERS editor Forrest J. Ackerman admitted within the magazine that he changed the numbering specifically in order to bring FAMOUS MONSTERS closer to its 100th issue. In this, he was a man ahead of his time.

  • JD says:

    @Turan : there was that period in 2008-2010 when Amazing Spider-Man switched to three issues a month (instead of there being three monthly Spider-Man books). It scaled down a bit to “two issues a month” when Slott took over full-time until about mid-2014 (the end of the Superior Spider-Man phase), where we got to the current “one issue or maybe two a month” irregular schedule.

    And that’s how ASM caught up : #500 in Dec 2003 (middle of the JMS run), #600 in September 2009 (deep in the “brain trust” era), #700 in February 2013 (just before the Superior switch).

  • Johanna says:

    It has to be a battle? Can’t it all just end with us having a nice cup of tea while we fade into obscurity?

    Thanks for pointing out the blog update links – it’s a nice melancholic indulgence to remember those days.

  • Mikester says:

    Oh, I guess tea would be fine, but I did have my heart set on a swordfight.

  • Kurt Onstad says:

    Speaking of other formats for comics blogging, have I mentioned my new podcast, Welcome to Geektown? I answer questions on various geeky subjects (probably comics mostly), from geeks and curious non-geeks alike. The first episode is up, and available at iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher (in theory. They still only have the preview episode) and any other podcast aggregator that connects to one of those.

    Thus ends my shameless plug.

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