Now’s probably the time to put those Robin III comics back on the shelves.

§ September 6th, 2013 § Filed under this week's comics § 6 Comments

Well, here they are, the DC Comics with the 3D covers, in quantities sometimes approximating the orders retailers placed months ago. And to be fair, the covers are pretty neat, adding to the tragedy that there’s not nearly enough around to meet demand. Saw several new faces over the last day or two, folks driving from out of town trying to track down the covers their local stores ran out of so quickly. Not that we were much better, with the increased demand meaning faster departures off the shelves, and once people have seen what the 3D covers looked like, the 2D covers DC offered to supplement the allocated orders were, for some, unsatisfactory replacements.

Not for everyone, though! I actually had some people with in-store pull lists request they not get the 3D covers, and believe you me, I thanked them for that, given the allocations have left me with barely enough to cover the regulars, much less the extra demand. And employee Timmy was a step head of me, looking up the 3D covers on the eBay and, sure enough, the panic buying has set in, resulting in relatively crazy prices for books that have barely been out for 48 hours. That makes the one-per-customer signs I put on some of the 3D books seem like an even better idea now, though Timmy reported to me that some folks were buying one 3D cover and the 2D version. (I can’t really say anything, since I plan on doing the same for the Swamp Thing issue that’s coming later this month. Sad when it happens to someone you know, isn’t it?)

As for the comics themselves, I did like the ones I bought well enough, though that’s bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy in that I restricted myself to buying the Villains Month issues from the series I was already reading. The Green Lantern one, Relic, was probably my favorite, giving us the backstory for this new villain, as well as finally providing full context for the story being presented on the 1:25 ratio black-and-white sketch variant covers being offered for the GL family of books over the last couple of months.

“Based on George Lucas’s original rough-draft screenplay” says the blurb on the cover, both a warning and an enticement to the remaining Star Wars fans still devoted to the minutia of the property despite it all. That would include me, apparently, since I bought this comic, more out of a deep-seated need of the Young Mikester still within me to draw a narrative thread through all the memories of the preproduction images I absorbed back in my Starlog-and-such days. I’m not the only one, it seems, since I saw more than a few new customers around my age showing up just for this comic, thanks likely to its presence in the real-world news media.

The comic itself is, well, what it is. It certainly gives the impression, whether or not this is what actually happened, that there was once a time someone could tell Lucas “no,” resulting in his beating this rough draft into the lean, mean fighting machine that is the original Star Wars movie from 1977. The emphasis in The Star Wars #1 on political intrigue, the lack of a central sympathetic “point of view” character (at least one as strong as Luke Skywalker)…you can see where the prequels came from. That said, it’s still an interesting comic, with familiar names and concepts not quite in their final form. We’ll see if that novelty carries us through eight issues.

A combination of the writing of Jonathan Hickman with the premise of the book (the return of the gods of assorted pantheons to Earth) is what got me to pick this up. That title is certainly something else, though I haven’t really noticed anyone at the shop giving it the stinkeye, so the no-such-thing-as-bad-publicity strategy hasn’t really come into play here yet. Nor is there too much of the usual bit of the old ultraviolence that you usually get in your typical serving of Avatar comics. I mean, there’s some, and I bet there’ll be more in the future, so hang in there, guys!

Seriously, though, I like the set-up here, and am hoping it pays off and isn’t just an excuse for over-the-top gore. But, you know, c’mon. I mean, I might still read it, but I’ll cast a socially-responsible upturned eyebrow upon the proceedings, see if I won’t.

The first issue of this series came out in the first week of January of this year. It is now the first week of September. There have been seventeen issues of this comic in eight months, and that’s not counting the recently launched companion series, or the Age of Ultron one-shot tie-in. But that’s okay, since you’re all rich, right?

A little context for the post’s subject line.

6 Responses to “Now’s probably the time to put those Robin III comics back on the shelves.”

  • LFC says:

    regarding Superior Spider-Man, it was on this twice a month run for a while. 2012 saw 29 issues of Amazing Spider-Man (including point ones, Ends of the Earth one shot and anything by Slott), 2011 saw 29 issues as well, 2010 saw 33 issues and so on. Luckily it’s a very good book.

  • Sean says:

    H haven’t been paying much attention to Marvel’s books for the last couple of years, so I got a good laugh out of the three-digit issue number (017) on the front of Superior Spider-Man. Is there anyone out there who genuinely thinks any of Marvel’s books are going to get to 100 before being rebooted with new issue #1’s?

  • Mikester,

    Looking at that Superior Spider-Man cover, I have a question.

    I’m not sure if you’ve mentioned it yet, but how does the Marvel “NOW!” trend of placing issue numbers on the BOTTOM of the cover affect your display and sales?(I seem to recall you did have a post regarding Marvel’s “magazine & movie poster” inspired placement of logos on covers, but I don’t recall anything specifically about issue #’s).

    My reason for asking is two-fold:

    1) I just spent some time this past week filing away about a year’s worth of adopted comics into their drawerbox longbox forever-homes, and having logos placed wherever the heck the artist thought was aesthetically pleasing was bad enough, but issue number placement at the bottom is murder!.

    2) I can imagine new release placement and sales might not be TOO bad (as long as you use something other than staggered, magazine style racks (and more individual full-cover showing racks like the ubiquitous “HEY, KIDS! COMICS!” spinner-racks of old).

    But then, what will happen when any unsold comics go into back-issue boxes?
    Kids (sure, kids. Why not?) rifling thru boxes to see if you have a specific issue will have to pull the comic most of the way out of the box, and will inevitably BEND the comic backwards a bit to see the numbers.

    You are the Superior Funnybook Retailer, so I seek answers from you.


  • Rob London says:

    Well, I can’t speak for the Mikester here, but the Silver Snail in Toronto puts little labels with the issue number on the top left corner of the bags.

  • Thanks, Rob.
    While that sounds like a major pain-in-the-ass, it really does seem to be “the” answer.

    On a side note, I just re-read my above comment and cringed at how poorly written it is.
    A grammarians nightmare.

    My apologies.

    Notes to self: chew your food, measure twice – cut once, and properly cogitate your thoughts before typing gobbledygook blog comments.

    Me am ashamed.


  • Snark Shark says:

    ““Based on George Lucas’s original rough-draft screenplay” ”

    it looks like FLASH GORDON! NOT buyin’ that one.