Your 2022 Predictions, Part One: Imperial Edition.

§ January 9th, 2023 § Filed under predictions § 13 Comments

Okay, you’ve been dreading it all year…it’s time for me to look back at your 2022 comic book industry predictions and see how you all did! (And don’t forget to enter your predictions for 2023 before too much 2023 has gone by! Remember to put your predictions JUST in that last link…don’t leave ’em in the comments for this post!)

As always, I do not have the all-seeing eyes of Uatu the Watcher, so I may not have the knowledge or Google-fu necessary to validate or invalidate some of your prognostications. If you have info I do not, please feel free to jump in and I can issue a correction.

So let’s get this prediction party started!

Kurt, whom I have known since he was just a young, yet still bearded, lad, predicts thusly

“I only have the one prediction, and I truly hope it comes true.

“With the news about George Perez, a special release of JLA/Avengers hardcover will be published this year, with the proceeds going to the cancer charity of George’s choice.”

Well, it wasn’t a hardcover, but a limited edition paperback was released, benefiting the Hero Initiative which Pérez very much supported. One would hope the great demand for that reprint, which far outstripped its supply, would goose Marvel and DC a little into thinking maybe they should get that back into regular circulation, and as long as I’m wishing for that, I’ll also wish for a magical flying dog that speaks because that’d be cool to have, too.

Anyway, it’s still hard to believe George Pérez is no longer with us.

• • •

Pal Nat naturally is all about comics with

“1. People will proclaim that the comic book is dying. There will, nonetheless, be comic books through the end of the year.”

Gotta be honest, I haven’t been hanging out in the online places where that sort of talk gets bandied about, but given that it’s a perennial worry, I wouldn’t be surprised in the slightest if folks were yakking about that as usual. A quick Googling shows that, yeah, sure, there was some shouting from both sides about “comics are thriving!” and “hoo boy goodbye comics” so, business as usual.

“2. Jim Lee will start drawing a miniseries. It will be very well drawn.”

No mini-series, but I bet if you took all the covers he drew over the past year, put ’em all together in one comic, and convince some poor bastard to somehow dialogue ‘n’ caption it into a story, you’d have a top seller.

“3. The split distribution market will bring back black-and-white issues as a force.”

I have seen a few more black and white titles pop up here and there, but now quite a patch on the wave of ’em we had in the ’80s. Interestingly, I am seeing some comics from, say, Lunar, that I’m not seeing distributed by Diamond. And yes, some of them are in black and white. Not many, but they’re there!

• • •

Turan skates on thin ice with

“1. Here, and at many other websites devoted to comics, there will be much discussion about what can be done to get people outside of the usual fanbase to read comics. At no point in any of these discussions will the name Raina Telgemeier be mentioned.

“2. Nor will the name Charlie Mackesy be mentioned. Or Rachel Smythe. Or Dav Pilkey. Or Alison Bechdel.”

I’m going to try to ignore the slight here and take this prediction, which really is just the one, at face value. First, I don’t talk a whole lot about expanding the market and getting new readers, beyond Free Comic Book Day blah blah that I usually do. But yes, you’re right, actual mass market comics successes like Raina et al. can get dismissed, oe or outright overlooked, by funnybook pundits as “not really comics” — by which they mean “not stapled magazines with flying people punching each other.”

I’m the last person to deny these comics giants and try to carry plenty of this material in my shop, in addition to the more traditional Marvel/DC and so on. Dog Boy, Plants Vs. Zombies, any Raina book…always consistent sellers for me. Though the trick with selling Raina’s books is that many kids who come into the store 1) already own ’em or 2) already checked ’em out from the library. But they still sell just fine.

“3. Prior to the release of each new Marvel movie in the coming year, there will be several people confidently predicting that this will finally be the one that flops. (At sites devoted to films, or to pop culture generally, these people will be wishing for an end to comics-based movies. At sites devoted to comics, these people will be wishing only for the Marvel movies to go away, so that the public will finally recognize the great genius of Zack Snyder.)”

I think I got the general sense that…yeah, this happened. Like Nat’s predication about people saying the comic industry is dying, the “superhero movie is over” people are always around now too. I think the movies are evolving, at least a little, to move away at least slightly from the usual formulas…but not too quickly. Marvel as a movie brand will likely not go away anytime soon…following the comics’ lead of making every movie more-or-less a chapter in the ongoing Marvel story is an insidious way to guarantee at least some measure of success for each release.

I can see this strategy getting tested as Marvel starts prepping the seeds and stems for cinematic shenanigans (“WUNDARR: THE MOVIE”) but by God they got people to see an Ant-Man movie, so I’m not giving them the 10-count yet.

And I haven’t seen the Snyder contingent braying too often lately, as I’m pretty sure I blocked most of them on Twitter, where they live. But I’m sure they’ll make their displeasure known as soon as James Gunn puts out a new DC movie that contains, say, a single joke.

• • •

Thom H hails us with

“1. DC will announce Tom King’s next 12-issue Black Label series: Scarecrow with Jae Lee.”

Almost there! As awesome as that would have been, instead we got Danger Street, a 12-issue Tom King Black Label series featuring…well, I wrote about it here.

“2. Marvel Studios will announce John Krasinski and Emily Blunt as Mr. Fantastic and The Invisible Woman in their new Fantastic Four movie.”

News stories as of December have John Krasinski saying that Marvel hasn’t talked to him about being in their 2025 Fantastic Four movie, despite having played the character in last year’s Doctor Strange movie. I haven’t seen many details about the film beyond the director apparently stating he wants the movie to reflect the comics accurately. Look, I’ll believe that as soon as I see Galactus and the Watcher looming over New York on-screen.

“3. Bendis’ Legion of Super-Heroes will return for one last brief run before disappearing once again.”

Well, we have that Justice League Vs. Legion of Super-Heroes mini with Bendis’ LSH, announced in 2021 and running six issues from mid-January to late September. I guess that sorta counts.

• • •

DK comes back from his holiday in Cambodia, starts stealing people’s mail, declares soup is good food, and prepares to lynch his landlord after saying to me

“It’s prediction time AGAIN? That went fast.”

Yeah, tell me about it.

“1. DC and Marvel will not re-issue JLA/Avengers in 2022.”

Well, at only 7000 copoies, that’s almost like not reissuing it….

“2. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness will contain at least one big obvious DC Comics character as a parody/homage a la Squadron Supreme.”

I didn’t notice any, so there wasn’t any obvious one, I guess. A cursory scan of Google results doesn’t show any Easter-egg-esque hidden DC details either. I suspect lawyers on both sides are discouraging that sort of thing, beyond I suppose some dialogue references to Superman and Batman in Eternals. (Which apparently some people are taking as meaing those characters exist in the Marvel Universe, and c’mon son.)

“3. The X-Men will drop in sales and the characters will become less popular in 2022. There will be serious talk of a complete reboot.”

I haven’t found good information on their sales in my usual haunts, and Comichron doesn’t have their full end of the year reports up just yet. And Googling just brings up YouTube videos and gossip sites that wallow in any negative news they can find, so I can’t say for sure. From my retail end, sales have remained mostly consistent on the “main” X-Men titles in current continuity, like Red and Immortal and the main series. Spin-off or side stories (like Legends and Wolverine) have equally consistent, but lower, sales. Other X-titles barely register (like New Mutants and X-Force and such), and X-Treme X-Men was D.O.A.

So…I don’t know? Main titles are fine, the too-many-spinoffs-because-Marvel-forgets-history-and-is-doomed-etc. Haven’t heard serious talk of a restart/reboot yet. But give ’em time.

• • •

Daniel T putts in the following

“Mike Sterling will continue to blog. His series on variant comics will ALMOST be finished by the end of the year.”

I did continue to blog, much to everyone’s chagrin. And my variant cover-age continued, albeit at a much slower pace. Not sure if I’m circling a conclusion yet!

• • •

Patrick the Saint has the patience to tell me

“1) Tom Kings next 12 issue books will be My Greatest Adventure & Carrie Kelly”

People want more Tom King 12-issue series! He’s busy with Danger Street right now, but maybe afterwards he can do your idea. I’d totally read it.

“2) Since IDW has lost the all-ages line of Marvel- Marvel will begin licensing them out to Archie, which will put them in digest form and Marvel will be on a news-stand for the first time in over a decade.”

They did it once! …But it’s been a few years and I don’t see any more being offered up at the moment.

“3) Next big craze in variant covers: Taking a panel George Perez did and blowing it up to make a variant cover.”

There have been a few Pérez variants, but of the pin-up variety, no so much of the blown-up interior panel kind. If they ever do, I recommend taking them from this comic, regardless of title or company.

• • •

Okay, that’s enough of a start. ‘ll continue this Wednesday with even more of your predictions! Thanks for reading, pals, and we’ll see you then!

13 Responses to “Your 2022 Predictions, Part One: Imperial Edition.”

  • Thom H. says:

    Yay! I got two 1/2 points, which is not bad.

    Thanks for addressing my predictions!

  • Daniel says:

    “And I haven’t seen the Snyder contingent braying too often lately, as I’m pretty sure I blocked most of them on Twitter, where they live. But I’m sure they’ll make their displeasure known as soon as James Gunn puts out a new DC movie that contains, say, a single joke.”

    —–

    People are free to like or dislike Zack Snyder all they want, but what annoys me most is that Snyder is, by every single account that I’ve read from the people who’ve worked with him, repeatedly described as a genuinely kind and decent person. Whereas James Gunn, whom the Snyder haters seem to love, is a literal online troll who was fired by Disney for being a troll and making repeated, explicit jokes about pedophilia. Yet Gunn is held up as the hero and Snyder portrayed as the villain because as long as the fanboys are satisfied, apparently all sins are forgiven.

    There are a contingent of obnoxious Snyder fans out there, but the vast majority of them are not. And they have so far (the last time I looked) raised about a million dollars for suicide prevention charities. To my knowledge, James Gunn’s fans have done nothing remotely similar to this. Yet it’s his fans (the ones who cheered on his pedophilia jokes) who are considered to be the good guys.

    Any group is going to have its bad apples. But Snyder is repeatedly held to a standard where the minority of bad apples is used to define him (and the actions of the majority of his fans willfully annoyed), whereas (for example) the toxicity that the MCU fans directed toward Sony after Far From Home (when it was announced that the Marvel-Sony partnership was over and Spider-Man would no longer be in the MCU) is conveniently forgotten as those fans are held up as veritable saints.

    Again, like Snyder or dislike him, but the double standard annoys me.

  • Mikester says:

    Daniel – I like Snyder’s movies just fine. I’ve said on this site before I’ve enjoyed his DC movies. My comments are specifically about the vocal and weird contingent of Snyder fans whose obnoxiousness and artifice exemplified a certain type of fandom. So settle down, fella.

  • Jon H says:

    “Whereas James Gunn, whom the Snyder haters seem to love, is a literal online troll who was fired by Disney for being a troll and making repeated, explicit jokes about pedophilia”

    Which he had posted years before being involved with Disney.

  • Snark Shark says:

    “yeah, this happened”

    Black Adam certainly flopped. And is on dvd already!

    “DK comes back from his holiday in Cambodia”

    Dead Kennedys reference? VERY NICE!

  • Cassandra Miller says:

    Wundarr: the Movie??? Just take my money!

  • Andrew says:

    That JLA/Avengers book will always be a sore spot for me. When the pandemic started, all of the comics shops I usually went to in NYC closed and frankly Midtown Comics isn’t a well run business. So I reached out to an old friend who had just purchased a comics shop in Palm Springs. For two years, I spent about $80/month and was thrilled to get a monthly care package while I worked from home and generally paniked at the health of my partner who is a nurse practitioner.

    I had asked the shop owner to reserve a copy of the JLA book and even offered to pay in advance since I knew it would be a hot book. But he promised up and down and sideways.

    During this time I was working 70/80 work weeks and was pretty miserable but was really looking forward to seeing this book that I’d heard so much about over the years. I suddenly realized that the book had been released a week before and reached out to the shop for the book – it turned out that Diamond had sent him only 2 copies and he had sold them to other customers. When I asked why he didn’t tell me when he found out about the shorted order, he snapped that he had posted it on the store’s facebook page (I later looked and never did find a post about it) and that he didn’t have time to reach out to every customer about a failed order.

    Some words were said by both of us but the upshot was that he was out a customer and I was out a retailer. Thankfully just as I am no doubt replaceable in his mind, so was he.

    I never have understood the reasoning behind making the book a scarcity… it seems if the aim was to honor George and raise $ for the Hero Initiative, once they saw the demand, that they’d just put out a second edition or something. Seems like a no brainer and very short sighted. Ah well, I’m sure there are intracacies about the deal between Marvel/DC that I don’t know about but it sure was a sour experience for this fan.

  • andrew says:

    correction:
    “But he promised up and down and sideways.”
    should be:
    “But he promised up and down and sideways that I would 100% get a copy”

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  • Snark Shark says:

    “never have understood the reasoning behind making the book a scarcity”

    Yeah, this! there’s CLEARLY a demand!

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