Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas Eve Is The Perfect Time To Discuss March Comics

You know me, trundling along largely oblivious to holidays. But Christmas Eve has all that anticipation about what the next morning may bring, and this is all about the anticipation of what comics three months from now may bring. It totally fits.

There's still not much going on for me outside Marvel. Dark Horse does have another Empowered Special, and since I enjoyed the last one, I'm going to try this one as well. They're also starting Buffy Season 10, with Christos Gage and Rebekah Isaacs as the creative team. As much as I enjoyed their work on Angel & Faith, I'm still not buying that. It's a book starring Buffy, which would be the equivalent of me buying a book starring Cyclops. The real question is still whether I'll pick up Gischler and Conrad's Angel & Faith when it starts in April.

So, Marvel. Daredevil starts back up with a new first issue, a new setting for Matt, and, of course, a higher price. But I'm still going to buy it, because at least with Waid and Samnee there's a previously established level of performance there, that I'm willing to pay 4 bucks and issue for.

But that's a rare exception, which highlights my personal issue with all these $4 launches. By my count, Marvel will start up at least 5 new titles in the first 3 months of 2014 that I was interested in, but will not purchase, because of the price tag. Black Widow, X-Factor, New Warriors, Ghost Rider, Moon Knight. I simply don't have the track record with those creative teams (or the characters involved) to make it worth the expenditure. At $3 an issue, I would almost certainly have taken a chance on them. Maybe not all, but I'd say three of the five, minimum. So instead of 6 ongoings from Marvel, I could be at 9, or 11.

I assume Marvel did the calculations and decided the extra money they'd get from greater sales at the lower price, did not exceed what they'll get with lower sales at the higher price point. That may be giving them too much credit. They may just be feeling their oats and figured what the hell, let's try it.

Besides all that, Superior Foes of Spider-Man has also become a $4 book, which means it's about to get canceled. They did the same thing with Fearless Defenders and X-Factor near the end of those books as well. Deadpool is double shipping, and naturally the did one of those stupid #25.NOW numbered issues. I don't know, does that mean it's extraneous, or is it just the 25th issue with a pointless accessory?

There's also Captain Marvel, but I noticed something. In the solicitations, it's listed as Captain Marvel #1 (at $3.99, naturally). On the order form it's Captain Marvel #1 (of 6). So it's just a mini-series? Well, that's the assumption I went by, which is why I was willing to pick it up, despite the price. I've generally liked DeConnick's work with Carol Danvers (if not all the crossover nonsense), and David Lopez is a big step up artistically from the folks who did most of the work on the previous volume, so, like Daredevil, I'm prepared to bet on it being worth the money.


SallyP said...

I am with you on Daredevil, I'm not happy about the insane price increase, but I love the book too much to forego the pleasure.

But $4 for a bunch of books that I am not particularly interested in? How in the hell do they ever think they are going to attract the casual customer? You can't simply cater to the ever decreasing pool of rabid fans, because that's a pot that is seeping away rapidly.

CalvinPitt said...

I don't understand it, either, but they don't seem to have a clue how to get these folks who are interested enough to go see the movies, or watch Agents of SHIELD or Arrow or whatever, to also buy the comics.

To be fair, I don't know how either. Marketing is not my strong point, but these prices sure aren't it.