Another Boom Period?

With Jim Hanley’s Universe closing here in NYC, it’s yet another comics staple that’s gone. I’ve seen shops close, the quality of art dip, storytelling kind of on the up but nothing that really excites people, sales plummet and comic films not doing great. Basically, we’re in a slump and have been for some time.

That sounds negative, I know, but I also know malaise like this can’t last forever. Eventually things are gonna be an upward trend. Eventually comics are gonna have another boom period.

But that got me thinking…what would cause that or would you be considered something to help comics? I have a few thoughts…ten bucks says they’re not possible or even plausible, but some ideas of how I think we can get back to a fantastic era.

First, I’d get rid of Jim Lee as the publisher and bring in Mark Waid. It’s no secret I haven’t been a fan of Lee as an artist or publisher or head of DC or whatever the term is these days. Things kind of went downhill when Paul Levitz got replaced. That being said, I’d love to see someone like Mark Waid come in and revitalize DC. Bring in someone who has a love and appreciation for the characters and stories. If his recent World’s Finest work is any indication, the man hasn’t lost a step in terms of storytelling and characters. I think he’d be fantastic

Less event comics and more important stories in the individual series themselves. Event comics aren’t inherently bad, but it feels like we have a new one every couple of months with tie-ins and consequences that sort of matter but don’t. I kind of wish we’d go back to the method we had in the eighties where you’d build up a big story and the payoff would be in that year’s annual. Annuals these days are either not important or showcases for up and coming writers and artists…the latter I’m cool with.

I will say I love what James Gunn is doing at the end of trailers for upcoming movies by adding a little tag showing you what tpbs to pick up if you’re interested in the movie. I think that’s a great way to get people interested and would like to see more of that. Different advertising would help.

How about celebrating runs or stories in news articles rather than spotlighting controversy? I’m so sick and tired comic sites in general, but seeing them constantly focus on what “didn’t work” or how certain stories “failed” characters doesn’t help. I know it’s clickbait designed to make you so angry you’ll click on the article to see what the writer actually has to say, but what I wouldn’t give to see good stories spotlighted. Give us reviews that focused on what made the story compelling or what surprise got you excited to read the next issue.

I’m sure there’s plenty more, but how about you? Imagine you had a say in propping up comics again, what changes or ideas would you bring to the table?

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I would bring back the Wal-Mart 100 Page Giants but without making them exclusive to any one retailer and make them orderable for the direct market so they can be sold in comic shops. I’d have at least 1 Batman book, 1 Superman book, 1 Wonder Woman/Harley Quinn book, 1 Justice League book and then a floating title that could be whatever (like a one-shot for Superman: Legacy that has a Guy Gardner, Hawkgirl, Mister Terrific stories in it). They have the graphic novel ads at the end of the trailers now, so these would serve a similar purpose: get the comics into hands and nothing with too much continuity. I love all the Legacy characters, but Superman would always be Clark, Batman always Bruce, etc.

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Yes, Please. When Crisis on infinite earths came out there had hardly been anything like it before (and it was mostly to sell toys if I remember right). It changed DC for the better in some ways even if you don’t like the story itself. then Comics got greedy and decided to do events change the status quo for a year until the next event. This needs to stop. pre flashpoint eras lasted 2-3 decades, they had time to build stories and get people invested in the characters and then when a new generation came around they got their own version of the character. Now eras are getting shorter and shorter from 5-3-2 years if it doesn’t slow down every month will be a new era.

I also believe movie universes have been stretched to the breaking point. I feel like they should be full of stand alone movies and series of movies and only connect when the story calls for it and even then do it sparingly, a team of 1000 people can work when you focus on a small group at a time (JLU). when you have to watch 20 movies to understand the ONE that you want to watch it becomes a question of is it worth it?

There needs to be fresh ideas. It seems like now the industry is riding on past success and haven’t taken the time for new ideas.

IN CONCLUTION :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

Find what needs refreshed and refresh it. Don’t keep rehashing the same thing over and over because it worked once.

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Make comics books cheaper or long enough to justify paying 5 to 6 dollars on them.

Make them more readily available outside comic book stores.

Make movies that actually have something to say and aren’t just Popcorn flicks.

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This is one thing I hate about modern comics. Those clickbait sites which highlight how people are mad about one thing or another. It drives website traffic, and not much else. Most of the time what they’re covering is minor or of little consequence. Comics are known to change what’s considered in-universe canon, they come out with different versions or runs all the time.

I’ve never been a huge fan of following what’s specifically included inside of this or that canon. A different writer comes along and does something different next time. I don’t favor long and drawn-out events that you have to follow through different titles. In my private world I would prefer all comics to be Black Label, that just exist in their own universe.

I don’t know what’s driving the slump, but I haven’t bought comics in a long time due to my own personal issues. Not having time or focus on my hobbies due to life’s stressors. I know the comics I want to read are there waiting for me. I’ve been more interested in going back in time and reading old comics if I’m being honest. The new stuff is kind of iffy for me. There’s a lot of content to catch up on.

I think comics are going by the wayside in this modern world, but will always exist like physical media, vinyl records, etc. Just in a small number of specialty shops. Digital is the future. New fans are into the shows, games and movies. If we had a new boom in sales, it would probably be driven by a specific visual media like a show that caught peoples’ attention. I don’t know if we’re ever going back to the heyday of comics. I doubt it.

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V I’ll second these V

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So many great ideas here. I think we’re all seeing that a lot of the fanbase has either moved on or hasn’t brought in as many new readers as they wanted. With the exception of Action Comics and Superman, I’m really not reading a lot of new stuff. Everyone tells me Nightwing is pretty decent, but I don’t have that urge to read it. Actually, I take that back, Mark Waid’s World’s Finest stuff is excellent.

These days everything seems hollow or forgettable. Stories are decompressed to write for the trade, stories feel like fifteen minute segments of an hour show rather than a story and the art style leans towards Deviantart or that crosshatched Jim Lee stuff that drove me nuts when I was a kid. There’s good stuff out there, but you have to wade through a lot of mediocre books to find it.

Maybe it’s just me.

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Couldn’t agree more. Event fatigue is too real at DC right now, and as a result I basically skipped all of Lazarus Planet and Knight Terrors because I just can’t bring myself to get into them at this point. True those are both scaled down from the constant universe-/reality-ending events that really drove me insane not too long ago, but it’s still too much. I’d be so happy if they went just a year without a major event/crossover that is way overhyped and promises to uproot the status quo forever, but I know it’s just not a realistic hope at this point

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do you guys think dc is relying too much on random writers that havent proven themselves
for characters that dc doesnt consider as “important” as the jl

new writers is an ok thing but you gotta get ones that have proven themselves

for example the most recent writer i can think of that has proven himself is kenny porter
they let him do a flash movie tie in and a dc mech comic
both relatively innocent things that he can prove his worth on
he proved his worth with it and moved to superboy and knight terrors robin and did amazing
but like writers like megan fitzmartin exist at dc and were given tim drake
did bad and was given a young justice miniseries

i dont understand why dc hires writers like fitzmartin or others like tini howard who are just plain bad at writing

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who sets the standards on what proving themself means?

Pretty sure DC isn’t just taking people off the street and going hey, can you self edit your work and do you like Batman and do you want to write a Batman comic.

anyhow, and that might sound sarcastic, eh it is a tiny bit but not aimed in a personal manner.


I really do not see the comic book industry or at least DC Comics being interested in lowering the price of comics for fans, die hards or customers in general. I think comics, get hosed by advertisers, those are pages that could have been used for a story. Anyhow, anyone can figure out how to make a comic book better, lower the cost, put the advertisements at the end of the book… I oddly, did make a suggestion about making basically a comic poster book, but they dont rip out, or um, a variant comic book that is nothing but variant covers. An kick me in the face, if there were not a few that popped out for Joker, Poison Ivy, and I think Cat Woman,. Makes me wonder if someone saw my post and said why not give it a try.

I for one am tired of variant comics, sometimes my LCS cant get a particular one because of bleh bleh i cant figure it out, or they run around 6 to almost 7 bucks, and for a repeat story with only a different cover, knowing that the big thing is, will it be a giant hit and financial score for ebayers and comic book flippers in general, im just over it ; ill still buy one on occasion but over all, not impressed.

I gotta say you guys, are great with knowing the names of writers and artists.

I only know a few, Geoff Johns, Joel Jones, George Perez, and Sean Murphy. Out side of that , i am clueless. and that is just names i can drop, the only ones i have collected from is Geoff Johns and Sean Murphy. Which Sean Murphy has a new Zorro book out, which I plan on buying once it goes to retail.

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were you saying you wanted a book of variant covers ? or you dont want that
if yes to the first one there is one for swimsuits and it has 2 stories in there as well
G’nort’s Illustrated Swimsuit Edition (2023)

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I saw that Zorro comic and it looks fantastic!

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Also, agree with variant covers. It should be a fun thing to collect, but flippers, ebayers and the like have turned something fun into a commodity. I have that problem with a lot of collectibles these days.

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Same I’m really looking forward to that book, Sean Murphy is one of my favorite comic creators right now.

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Yeah, its crazy what eBay’s has don’t to the comics market. (although I have gotten some good deals before)

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It is tough to get invested in a series when it could be sidelined by a major crossover at any second.

I have been re-reading a lot of solid older runs lately. I need character driven stories instead of plot driven stories. It feels like a lot of the newer stories that I have read are all plot.

I will be skipping the next few crossovers until my crossover fatigue has abated.

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It’s both funny and sad that the new Green Lantern book couldn’t even make it to issue #3 before being interrupted by Knight Terrors

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Agree with all the crisis/event fatigue.

Even within the stories themselves they’ll sometimes cut to regular people saying stuff like “Well the skies are red again and the Earth is splitting apart–I guess the Justice League is at it again.” So clearly the writers know what they’re doing, as if making the stories self aware of their repetitiveness makes it clever.

Still more good than bad out there in DC in my opinion. Like others have said I’ll probably just be more selective about what I read.

Being a casual fan of DC movies, I can say that I’ve been very confused about the mixed messaging about movies. I had preferred that Zack Snyder’s plan had stayed in place but once they decided to scrap it, it should have been more of a clean break. With the last 4 or 5 movies being sort of related to that universe (but knowing it wasn’t going to lead to anything going forward) has just felt like a slow agonizing death.

I think WW84 is when I started checking out. That was the turning point for me.

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