Marvel to revamp their all-ages line?

200912240045 Marvel to revamp their all ages line?
Both Kevin Melrose and David Pepose note that the March solicitations state that Marvel will be ceasing publication of its last two Marvel Adventures titles — MARVEL ADVENTURES SUPER HEROES and MARVEL ADVENTURES SPIDER-MAN — in their kid-friendly line of all-ages comics. However, it appears that it’s just paving the way for a revamp. Melrose notes:

Paul Tobin, who writes both books, acknowledged on Twitter that “it’s a ‘stay tuned’ sort of announcement.” Meanwhile, a company spokesman would only say that “Marvel has some exciting announcements relating to the future of Marvel Adventures.”

Comments

  1. Torsten Adair says:

    Marvel… tread lightly. Both comics are enjoyable reads, offering accessible stories for young and old. Spider-Man does have an ongoing storyline, but it is uncomplicated and easy to follow.

    IF Marvel can keep the qualities which already exist while expanding the line, then I will be happy.

    Might the second Marvel FCBD title be a revamped MA tie-in?

  2. Matt Halteman says:

    I really really hope they don’t screw around with this too much. The books don’t need to be revamped because they just did that. They just need new #1 issues so people feel like they have a better entry point and they need to market the relaunch aggresively.

    They need to keep the great artists they have on covers (Skottie Young is knocking his Spider-Man covers out of the park, ditto for Niko Hendrikson and Chris Samnee on MA: Super-Heroes). They could possibly ramp up the interior art as well. Instead of letting it be a try-out for up-and-coming artists (most of whom, don’t get me wrong, are very good, especially Matteo Lolli and Ig Guera), bring in guest artists that are big names at Marvel to draw people who might not otherwise read the MA books. Hopefully they’ll realize how good they are and stick around.

    Honestly, I wonder if the best idea might not be to just due a big 64 page monthly MA anthology book, with Spider-Man as the constant regular feature and rotating stars in the other stories. That would be able to cover a large canvas and might even help entice big names to illustrate stories, since there is less of a long-term commitment. And they could occasionally, as a special thing, devote the entire 64 pages to one big story.

    I don’t know what will work best, but Marvel just needs to not ditch the MA line. Kids will read comics, they just need to be good and they need to be sold where kids can get them.

    It’s a shame that DC doesn’t really have a current line of books for older kids. Tiny Titans and Super Friends are great, as are the Cartoon Network books, but why can’t they also have something similar to MA for kids who want something closer to the excellent animated shows, and without all the screwing and dismemberment? Or hell, why can’t they have a line like that for me?

  3. Rich Larson says:

    Agreed. I’m not sure why the books need a revamp (unless the sales have been so low that they can’t financially do it. It’s never been clear to me where these sold.) But my 7 year old son and I have read Spiderman and Avengers since the beginning. I used to read them and now that he’s older I find him re-reading issues again and again. The books have been consistently funny and interesting and done in one (and he loved the Mini Marvels back-ups too, until they stopped.) Let’s hope they have agood plan and keep the good stuff they have going.

  4. Cormorant says:

    >>They just need new #1 issues so people feel like they have a better entry point and they need to market the relaunch aggresively.

    Agreed on the aggressive marketing – the books already do really well in my shop, but we go out of our way to have a notable all-ages section and I don’t know that most shops do that. Retailers need to know they can really cultivate a family market. It’s very viable.

    As for relaunching with a new #1…do the kids these are targeted at really care? My experience has been that they just gravitate to favorite characters or properties and issue numbers are all but meaningless to them. Which is pretty much how it should be if the plan is for these stories to remain fairly self-contained.

  5. Matt Halteman says:

    “As for relaunching with a new #1…do the kids these are targeted at really care? My experience has been that they just gravitate to favorite characters or properties and issue numbers are all but meaningless to them. Which is pretty much how it should be if the plan is for these stories to remain fairly self-contained.”

    I agree that most kids don’t care about numbering (though I was way into getting first issues as a kid, myself). However, since they don’t care, but the older readers (even older kids) tend to, I think it makes sense to both relaunch with new first issues to capture anyone who would be captured by such a thing and market the books properly so that anyone can get them, regardless of whether or not they care about numbering.

  6. I thought I heard the book was going to be relaunched as “Disney /Marvel Adventures- paving the way for The Beat to resume her “Adventure On” duties.

    I will live to see the day for my all time requested team up issue of Dr. Christopher Syn and Spider-man play out.

    ~

    Coat

  7. Kat Kan says:

    Cary Coatney – I’d LOVE to see a team up of Dr. Christopher Syn and Spider-Man! Yeah! I loved that Dr. Syn film, The Scarecrow of Romney Marsh. And in high school, I managed to actually track down a couple of the old Dr. Syn novels by Russell Thorndyke.

  8. That’s to bad, my stores sell the digests quite a bit.

  9. Yup, if Disney crossed over their characters with the ones they purchased from Marvel and made those their kids comics, then we wouldn’t see the Marvel Adventures so far at the bottom of sales ranking.

  10. Where’s my “additional reporting by” credit on this article?

  11. Wraith says:

    Here’s a novel idea, why don’t Marvel return to their pre Quesada policy and make all of their MU superhero books suitable for all ages without talking down to the readers. In other words, the current stories minus the cussing (words like bitch,bastard,ass,and goddamn would be forbidden),the on panel gory and bloody violence,and strongly implied sexual innuendos (subtle sexual innuendos would be OK). Of course, that would make to much sense and upset those elitist creators and fans who insist that Marvel (and DC) superhero comics need to be “mature” and appeal to their own adult tastes.

  12. Henrik J says:

    Saying that all comics should be all-ages is as silly as suggesting Marvel and DC make all their title to be Mature Audiences Only, why alienate a group of fans when you can have a variety of books that appeal to every kind of reader?

  13. Wraith says:

    “Saying that all comics should be all-ages is as silly as suggesting Marvel and DC make all their title to be Mature Audiences Only, why alienate a group of fans when you can have a variety of books that appeal to every kind of reader? ”

    _________________________________

    Know one here is saying that ALL comics should be for all ages. However, (and speaking ONLY for myself) I think that ALL Marvel and DC INTERCONNECTED MU and DCU superhero comics should be suitable for all ages without talking down to the readers. To have variety of comics that are part of the SAME INTERCONNECTED CONTINUITY/UNIVERSE be aimed at different age groups is not only silly, but pretty damn stupid. It’s like throwing a childrens birthday party,a teenage house party,and a swingers sex party in the same single family house at the same time.

  14. Rob Jensen (aka ShutUpRob) says:

    “To have variety of comics that are part of the SAME INTERCONNECTED CONTINUITY/UNIVERSE be aimed at different age groups is not only silly, but pretty damn stupid. It’s like throwing a childrens birthday party,a teenage house party,and a swingers sex party in the same single family house at the same time.”

    That analogy only works if the comics for all those various groups were printed in the same anthology magazine (ie: a house). A universe is not a house.

    — Rob

    PS: Sure, Marvel is the House of Ideas, but that’s Marvel Comics, Inc., not Earth-616.

  15. Synsidar says:

    A look at some recent issues indicates that Marvel, using its current system, would not produce interesting comics, using an “All ages” approach. For example, MARVEL DIVAS had a “Parental Advisory” rating. The only reason for that rating that I could see was the breast cancer subject matter. NEW AVENGERS, SIEGE: THE CABAL, DARK AVENGERS, Ms. MARVEL, DOCTOR VOODOO — they all have the T+ rating, despite not having offensive material. Slott’s MIGHTY AVENGERS has an A rating.

    If MARVEL DIVAS had a “Parental Advisory” rating because of breast cancer, what rating would Englehart’s classic WEST COAST AVENGERS storylines, which had Hank Pym contemplating suicide and Mockingbird letting the Phantom Rider fall to his death (his ghost later haunted her) because he’d raped (implied) her while using mind control have had? Those are among the best storylines Marvel has ever done, but they would have never seen print under an “All Ages” approach.

    The hero vs. villain conflicts are just too predictable to be interesting over an extended period of time. The character-oriented subplots are where excellent writers shine, and having characters react intensely or explosively can require material that’s not suitable for kids.

    SRS

  16. michael says:

    I don’t have a problem with the All Ages books, it’s just that they are surely not getting into the hands they are made for because of limited DIAMOND DISTRUBUTION, not that they exist.

    Shouldn’t Marvel/Disney be powerful enough now to make some real changes to comic book market?

  17. Wraith says:

    “That analogy only works if the comics for all those various groups were printed in the same anthology magazine (ie: a house). A universe is not a house.

    — Rob

    PS: Sure, Marvel is the House of Ideas, but that’s Marvel Comics, Inc.,”

    ___________________________________

    But the characters from those various comics of crossover with and/or guest star in each others comics or are featured in major crossover mini series together. So my analogy does work. How much sense does it make to have an all ages X-Men book with Wolverine as a member, but have a Wolverine solo book with a PARENTAL ADVISORY warning or have Moon Knight guest star in an all ages Spider-Man book, but have the ongoing MK book with a PARENTAL ADVISORY? So a little kid who likes either Wolverine or MK can’t read their solo books because they are not old enough. That’s bad business IMO.

  18. Wraith says:

    “A look at some recent issues indicates that Marvel, using its current system, would not produce interesting comics, using an “All ages” approach. For example, MARVEL DIVAS had a “Parental Advisory” rating. The only reason for that rating that I could see was the breast cancer subject matter. NEW AVENGERS, SIEGE: THE CABAL, DARK AVENGERS, Ms. MARVEL, DOCTOR VOODOO — they all have the T+ rating, despite not having offensive material. Slott’s MIGHTY AVENGERS has an A rating.

    If MARVEL DIVAS had a “Parental Advisory” rating because of breast cancer, what rating would Englehart’s classic WEST COAST AVENGERS storylines, which had Hank Pym contemplating suicide and Mockingbird letting the Phantom Rider fall to his death (his ghost later haunted her) because he’d raped (implied) her while using mind control have had? Those are among the best storylines Marvel has ever done, but they would have never seen print under an “All Ages” approach.

    The hero vs. villain conflicts are just too predictable to be interesting over an extended period of time. The character-oriented subplots are where excellent writers shine, and having characters react intensely or explosively can require material that’s not suitable for kids.

    SRS ”

    _____________________________________

    Ah, you hit on a key problem with the CURRENT Marvel editorial and publishing regimes current rating system. Many (NOT ALL) of the current editors and creators running Marvel (and DC) either have forgotten or never understood or knew about the art of writing and drawing books in “layers”. They think that an “all ages” book has to either (a) talk down to the readers (b) be campy or goofy (c) stray away from all manner of mature subject matter (d) be light hearted and not dark (e) can’t contain multiple ongoing subplots and (f) can’t show people getting killed on panel (much less use the words “kill” or “murder” in an all ages book). They seem to either have forgotten or didn’t know that before Quesada became EIC, MOST interconnected MU comics were ALL AGES CODE APPROVED comics, that often delt with mature subject matter in a tasteful and all ages manner without talking down to the readers.

  19. The Quitter says:

    Yeah! As we all know ratings are perfect because the film industry has eliminated the ability of underage persons to watch rated R films. Stupid Marvel and their rating system which completely prevents kids from reading a lot of their current mainstream product.

  20. Wraith says:

    “Yeah! As we all know ratings are perfect because the film industry has eliminated the ability of underage persons to watch rated R films. Stupid Marvel and their rating system which completely prevents kids from reading a lot of their current mainstream product. ”

    ________________________________

    I see you’re trying real hard to miss my point.

  21. Rob Jensen (aka ShutUpRob) says:

    “I see you’re trying real hard to miss my point.”

    No. We just think your point is patently ridiculous, Wraith.

    — Rob

  22. Wraith says:

    “No. We just think your point is patently ridiculous, Wraith.

    — Rob ”

    ________________________________

    What is so ridiculous about my point? What is it about making all INTERCONNECTED MU and DCU superhero comics more appropriate for all ages that offends you so much? Do you feel embarrassed to be reading a comic that doesn’t contain any profanity,on panel full depictions of gory and bloody violence,or strongly implied sexual situations?

  23. Synsidar says:

    No. We just think your point is patently ridiculous, Wraith.

    Wraith did make useful points about material in the past having adult content, yet being accessible to younger readers. A skilled writer can write at two levels within one story. It’s easy to generalize that a writer should be free to write to the age level that he feels is appropriate, even if the result is a MAX series, a lot harder to prove that doing a superhero story as a MAX series is the only, or even best, way to do it. Tossing in four-letter words, nudity, and gore doesn’t automatically make a story more “mature.”

    SRS

  24. Cory!! Strode says:

    Does anyone know how and how well these sell outside the direct market? Because the sales figures I see aren’t good enough for the line to continue.

  25. Cormorant Says:

    “As for relaunching with a new #1…do the kids these are targeted at really care?”

    Probably not. In simpler times, I was buying comics (or, more accuraetly, my parents were buying them for me) off the convenience store rack, and I didn’t really know much about issue numbers. I think around age seven or eight is when I began to realize that Marvel didn’t just publish a whole bunch of Spider-Man titles, but they were different — Marvel Tales, Peter Parker, etc.

    The renumbering is probably lost on kids … and might be confusing to the parents who purchase them for kids. It got pretty confusing for me, which might be another reason I don’t follow comics much anymore. Just how many Number 1 issues has Super-Girl had over the past five years?

  26. The Quitter says:

    I think it’s a good idea to have a Marvel Adventures line, a mainline Marvel Universe, and a MAX line. Apparently, so does Marvel. Marvel Adventures is aimed at all ages. Mainline DCU is aimed at a teen level, and MAX is made specifically for adults. Marvel Adventures to get them in the door, Marvel Universe to give them what they want, and MAX to let them cut loose. Where’s the problem?

    Most Marvel Universe titles are fine for teens and up, and that’s a good place to be. A lot of Marvel books could benefit from the firm hand of an editor, but making huge changes to dialog and art could alter the whole tone of the book and not for the better.

  27. Synsidar says:

    Where’s the problem?

    On 12/24, Wraith posted:

    I think that ALL Marvel and DC INTERCONNECTED MU and DCU superhero comics should be suitable for all ages without talking down to the readers.

    I share the sentiment. The rating system that’s in place isn’t really useful for gauging content. Implied scenes and abstract issues are what make stories involving, on an intellectual level, and those types of content aren’t suited to rating systems. Take the VISION & SCARLET WITCH maxiseries, for example. That had implied android-human sex, a heroine (Crystal) engaging in adultery, and two entertainers (Glamor and Illusion), friends of the leads, who were jewel thieves. The Comics Code okayed the material, but what would that content be rated under Marvel’s current system?

    The Parental Advisory rating for MARVEL DIVAS seemed silly. Breast cancer shouldn’t be a sensitive subject for kids.

    If Marvel’s rating system is based only on superficial impressions of content, images, and dialogue, and not on content as a whole, then it’s pretty much useless. It would be better to have the MAX line for adults, to promote the Marvel Adventures line as material for children, and to not rate the mainstream MU titles. Given the readership of the MU titles, I can’t see how the ratings impact buying decisions anyway.

    SRS

  28. Wraith says:

    “Most Marvel Universe titles are fine for teens and up, and that’s a good place to be. A lot of Marvel books could benefit from the firm hand of an editor, but making huge changes to dialog and art could alter the whole tone of the book and not for the better. ”

    The thing is, before Quesada became EIC, most MU titles (with the occasional mini series,graphic novel,or magazine series being the exception) were fine for people of all ages because they were able to speak and appeal to readers of all ages on various different levels.

    And if the current T+ and PARENTAL ADVISORY MU titles switched back to their pre-Quesada level of all ages content, the changes to the art and dialogue (a) wouldn’t be all that huge and (b) wouldn’t alter the whole tone of the books.

  29. The Quitter says:

    Synsidar Says:

    12/25/09 at 5:05 pm
    Where’s the problem?

    On 12/24, Wraith posted:

    I think that ALL Marvel and DC INTERCONNECTED MU and DCU superhero comics should be suitable for all ages without talking down to the readers.

    “I share the sentiment. ”

    I don’t.

    “If Marvel’s rating system is based only on superficial impressions of content, images, and dialogue, and not on content as a whole, then it’s pretty much useless.”

    It is useless except for the sole reason for its existence. To keep an outside body from imposing a ratings system upon them. Same reason the MPAA exists. Most MPAA rulings are stupid too. You can say FUCK in a PG-13 film and you guys are complaining about what’s acceptible in the comics?!

    “It would be better to have the MAX line for adults, to promote the Marvel Adventures line as material for children, and to not rate the mainstream MU titles.”

    Bad idea. Already said why.

    “Given the readership of the MU titles, I can’t see how the ratings impact buying decisions anyway.”

    They probably don’t except to ward off parents who might consider buying a T+ book for a 7 year old.

    Wraith Says:

    12/25/09 at 8:26 pm
    “The thing is, before Quesada became EIC, most MU titles were fine for people of all ages because they were able to speak and appeal to readers of all ages on various different levels.”

    1. You have it out for Quesada, and judging by your comments on the sales threads, this is a possibility. or 2. The two things are unrelated as the ratings system was just starting to be utilized and navigated around.

    Before Quesada, Marvel was in the tank and nobody wanted to work there. Lots of people forget that little technicality. Also, before Quesada when comics were so kid-friendly, Wolverine called Sabertooth a kike. Now that’s good, all-ages fun!

    The only way to make the change you’re talking about is to listen to Robert Kirkman, but there’s no way that’s gonna happen. Marvel’s go-to guy is a gritty crime-fiction writer whose Marvel superhero work is terrible in comparison even though it tries real hard to be as good as Sam and Twitch but never comes close (Bendis, for those still wondering.) In addition to that, Americans are too puritanical. There’s no need for the entire mainline tier to be all ages when there’s an imprint exactly for that. I do think that a mainline book should NEVER reach the Parental Advisory level and the ones that currently do are typically just the very violent ones like Wolverine and Deadpool. Even after taking that into account, I doubt there’s anything in those books that wouldn’t make it into that Wolverine movie due to objectionable content.

    “And if the current T+ and PARENTAL ADVISORY MU titles switched back to their pre-Quesada level of all ages content, the changes to the art and dialogue (a) wouldn’t be all that huge and (b) wouldn’t alter the whole tone of the books.”

    Then why change it? There’s already a line of comics for all-ages content. Plus, if Marvel dared to have a gay character in an all-ages mainline book, that’s just asking for trouble because a lot of people find that sort of thing to be indoctrination and inappropriate for their impressionable youths. I don’t mean gay sex or even a little bit of kissing. I’m talking about something as simple as having a same-sex married couple on the team in addition to Scott and Jean. (yes, I know she’s dead and then not dead… and then dead again) It’s smarter to leave things the way they are, but your attitude seems to suggest “if it ain’t broke, fix it ’til it is.”

  30. Synsidar says:

    Quitter, you’re arguing that the industry as a whole should be regulated for the benefit of stupid people — that they need to be warned to avoid what they can’t handle. The Comics Code, with its seal of approval, was better at that than Marvel’s ratings system is. If you’re going to argue for a ratings system, you have to explain how to make it work in terms of rating abstract content — remember MARVEL DIVAS? I doubt that you can.

    I am aware that the current decompressed, dialogue-only approach to writing practically eliminates writing on two levels — one might call it a WYSIWYG approach to writing — but that only demonstrates how simplistic and childish the final product is.

    SRS

  31. Wraith says:

    “1. You have it out for Quesada, and judging by your comments on the sales threads, this is a possibility. or 2. The two things are unrelated as the ratings system was just starting to be utilized and navigated around.

    Before Quesada, Marvel was in the tank and nobody wanted to work there. Lots of people forget that little technicality. Also, before Quesada when comics were so kid-friendly, Wolverine called Sabertooth a kike. Now that’s good, all-ages fun!

    The only way to make the change you’re talking about is to listen to Robert Kirkman, but there’s no way that’s gonna happen. Marvel’s go-to guy is a gritty crime-fiction writer whose Marvel superhero work is terrible in comparison even though it tries real hard to be as good as Sam and Twitch but never comes close (Bendis, for those still wondering.) In addition to that, Americans are too puritanical. There’s no need for the entire mainline tier to be all ages when there’s an imprint exactly for that. I do think that a mainline book should NEVER reach the Parental Advisory level and the ones that currently do are typically just the very violent ones like Wolverine and Deadpool. Even after taking that into account, I doubt there’s anything in those books that wouldn’t make it into that Wolverine movie due to objectionable content.

    “And if the current T+ and PARENTAL ADVISORY MU titles switched back to their pre-Quesada level of all ages content, the changes to the art and dialogue (a) wouldn’t be all that huge and (b) wouldn’t alter the whole tone of the books.”

    Then why change it? There’s already a line of comics for all-ages content. Plus, if Marvel dared to have a gay character in an all-ages mainline book, that’s just asking for trouble because a lot of people find that sort of thing to be indoctrination and inappropriate for their impressionable youths. I don’t mean gay sex or even a little bit of kissing. I’m talking about something as simple as having a same-sex married couple on the team in addition to Scott and Jean. (yes, I know she’s dead and then not dead… and then dead again) It’s smarter to leave things the way they are, but your attitude seems to suggest “if it ain’t broke, fix it ’til it is.” ”

    __________________________________________

    1. My problems with Quesada SOLELY have to do with many of the (IMO) bad/stupid decisions that he has made at Marvel as EIC. This includes the content of the books in regards to what is or isn’t appropriate for kids/all ages and what books or characters get certain ratings.

    2. Marvel (the COMIC BOOK DIVISION) was NOT in the tank before Quesada. IIRC, the comic book division was the only part of the company making money and was still the #1 comic book publisher in terms of market share and the top selling books. And except for the fall out with Waid and Lobdell, there were a lot of creators who wanted to (and did) work for Marvel. They might not have been the creators that YOU might have liked or wanted to see on the books, but they were still pretty damn good creators (IMO). As for Wolverine calling Sabretooth a “kike”, that was a typing error. Nothing more, nothing less.

    3. What was Kirkman’s suggestion? Could you please post a link to his suggestion?

    4. Marvel had gay characters in their comics when they were still suitable for all ages and carried the Comics Code. Nothstar,Hector (the member of the Pantheon from PAD’s INCREDIBLE HULK run),that heroic lesbian sword swinging member of the Wild Pack (from the SILVER SABLE AND THE WILD PACK ongoing series),Karma (who came out of the closet in a subtle manner in an issue of X-FORCE),and Justice/Marvel Boy’s father (who was revealed to be gay in an issue of NEW WARRIORS) are gay characters that were around when most Marvel comics were still suitable for all ages. And there was very little or no outrage from “Puritanical Americans” about these gay characters. Even when Northstar’s coming out issue of ALPHA FIGHT made mainstream news media, the story quickly died down with little or no negative reaction towards Marvel.

  32. The Quitter says:

    “Quitter, you’re arguing that the industry as a whole should be regulated for the benefit of stupid people”

    yes, and politicians. Everything is regulated for the benefit of stupid people. If it isn’t, stupid people hurt themselves and then sue companies and get lots of money because it’s not illegal to be stupid and companies are not doing a good job of regulating themselves if someone can misuse their product and cause harm to themselves. It’s a sad fact, but it’s still the way the world works.

    “The Comics Code, with its seal of approval, was better at that than Marvel’s ratings system is.”

    No it wasn’t. Nobody understood the Comics Code and most people didn’t even know if the comics they bought were Code Approved because the stupid box was so tiny and moved around the cover so often. A rating system is a more efficient way of imparting information, and useless as it may be it still makes the lawmakers feel a little better about not stepping in and instituting their own system. It implies effort on the part of those producing the content to keep harmful content away from the impressionable ones and let parents know with but a glance who should be reading what. A tiny Comics Code box if it’s even there couldn’t do that. Even a Code Approved book could contain material that a parent wouldn’t want their child of a certain age to read, and there’s no way to know that unless the read it first. At least a rating system is a more detailed guideline with an already established understanding in the mainstream thanks to the MPAA. I know they’re not exactly the same, but since people are already familiar with how the MPAA works, it would be easier for them to understand how a comic book rating system works. Also, the rating system has allowed Marvel and DC comics to catch up with the rest of the entertainment field whereas before it was firmly grounded in the children’s entertainment field with having to live up to Comics Code regulations or drop the approval and scar children for life.

    Rating systems are stupid, but they make people feel better. Comics Code was stupid, and it did nothing for anyone.

    “If you’re going to argue for a ratings system, you have to explain how to make it work in terms of rating abstract content — remember MARVEL DIVAS? I doubt that you can.”

    No, I don’t. Nor does a rating system have to abide by your guidelines for those ratings. It’s self-regulation. Marvel can rate a book however they want. If you don’t understand or approve of why a book was rated a certain way, then it’s best to leave it alone or ask Marvel directly. If their answer still doesn’t meet your approval, then your only choice is to get on with your life because it’s not your rating system and you don’t get sued if there’s a problem with it. I CAN explain it in terms of abstract content…it’s their rating system and they can do what they want. In the case of Marvel Divas, you thought it was rated too high for your taste, saying “For example, MARVEL DIVAS had a “Parental Advisory” rating. The only reason for that rating that I could see was the breast cancer subject matter.” I’m saying Marvel can rate it however they want and if they felt that the content of that book needed a higher rating, then so be it. If it was rated too low, then I could understand the outrage and the questioning of the rating system, but that’s not the case here. Marvel’s rating system and self-regulation is there to protect their company as much as it is to impart information to their consumers as much as it is to keep the government at bay. If you want to argue against it, you’ll need something more than “the Comics Code was better.”

    Rating systems are flawed, but they’re better than censorship. That’s practically what the Comics Code was and would have been had anybody cared about Comics Code Approval since the 50s after it essentially destroyed EC Comics.

    When you have 12 year olds trying to sneak into the latest Saw movie, watering down comics isn’t really in line with the rest of the world.

    “that only demonstrates how simplistic and childish the final product is.”

    well, if it’s childish, then it’s fit for all ages, eh?

    There’s no end to this argument. I’m for a rating system because it keeps the Comics Code and censorship and the government from interfering. It also allows a writer to write content to fit the rating or the rating to change according to content, and it keeps people informed of that every time the book is published because the rating is right there on the front of the book. I’m also against mainstream comics going back to the “good ol’ days of the 80s” and making their main books toe the line of all ages content.

    And good luck convincing Marvel and DC of the supposed wisdom of your plan because they know better than you that it just won’t work.

  33. The Quitter says:

    “2. Marvel (the COMIC BOOK DIVISION) was NOT in the tank before Quesada.”

    Then we recall things differently.

    December ’99: “MARKET SHARES Share of Overall Final Order Dollars

    DC
    40.88%

    Marvel
    17.58%

    Share of Overall Preordered Units

    DC
    32.73%

    Marvel
    30.71%

    Items in Top 300

    DC
    94

    Marvel
    55

    Dollar Share of Top 300 Comics & Top 25 TPBs

    DC
    38.81%

    Marvel
    27.73%

    Joe Quesada becomes editor-in-chief of Marvel Comics in 2000

    January ’02:Share of Overall Final Order Dollars

    Marvel
    32.97%

    DC
    30.30%

    Share of Overall Preordered Units (Publishers Only)

    DC
    39.08%

    Marvel
    37.54%

    Share of Overall Preordered Dollars (Publishers Only)

    Marvel
    36.88%

    DC
    29.84%

    Dollar Share of Top 300 Comics & Top 100 TPBs

    Marvel
    40.99%

    DC
    33.99%”

    Looks like progress to me because they were in the tank creatively and behind DC monetarily pre-Quesada.

    “there were a lot of creators who wanted to (and did) work for Marvel.”

    Not the ones whose names were selling comics, apparently.

    “As for Wolverine calling Sabretooth a “kike”, that was a typing error.”

    So they say, but it did happen.

    “3. What was Kirkman’s suggestion? Could you please post a link to his suggestion?”

    Marvel and DC should cater to the kids and Image and others should write for the adults. Look up “Kirkman mission statement” on CBR and you might find it.

    “4. Marvel had gay characters in their comics when they were still suitable for all ages and carried the Comics Code.”

    Right, this was back when nobody in the mainstream gave a crap about comics. There’s a lot of attention on comics now, and fringe groups are looking for any excuse to go after people these days. If it’s not a problem, then marry Cyclops and Iceman in the Marvel Adventures (read: all-ages)books and see what happens. I wasn’t saying they didn’t exist back then, but nobody cared enough to pay attention. Do it now and Fox News devotes a whole week to it.

    “Even when Northstar’s coming out issue of ALPHA FIGHT made mainstream news media, the story quickly died down with little or no negative reaction towards Marvel. ”

    Because that went along the lines of “hi, i’m gay and now let’s go be normal and beat up the bad peoples and forget I said it.” At least the homosexual characters now get to act like it and express themselves accordingly (see Runaways.) But if you want all-ages content, you won’t get more than “hi, i’m a homosexual” and character will now be referred to as “the gay one” or that fact will just be ignored completely. And it just goes to prove that the only one from back then I remembered was Northstar and I bought and read all of those comics you listed EXCEPT Alpha Flight.

    All-ages isn’t the answer, but Marvel should re-evaluate what they put out there on a regular basis.

  34. Wraith says:

    “2. Marvel (the COMIC BOOK DIVISION) was NOT in the tank before Quesada.”

    Then we recall things differently.

    December ‘99: “MARKET SHARES Share of Overall Final Order Dollars

    DC
    40.88%

    Marvel
    17.58%

    Share of Overall Preordered Units

    DC
    32.73%

    Marvel
    30.71%

    Items in Top 300

    DC
    94

    Marvel
    55

    Dollar Share of Top 300 Comics & Top 25 TPBs

    DC
    38.81%

    Marvel
    27.73%

    Joe Quesada becomes editor-in-chief of Marvel Comics in 2000

    January ‘02:Share of Overall Final Order Dollars

    Marvel
    32.97%

    DC
    30.30%

    Share of Overall Preordered Units (Publishers Only)

    DC
    39.08%

    Marvel
    37.54%

    Share of Overall Preordered Dollars (Publishers Only)

    Marvel
    36.88%

    DC
    29.84%

    Dollar Share of Top 300 Comics & Top 100 TPBs

    Marvel
    40.99%

    DC
    33.99%”

    Looks like progress to me because they were in the tank creatively and behind DC monetarily pre-Quesada.

    “there were a lot of creators who wanted to (and did) work for Marvel.”

    Not the ones whose names were selling comics, apparently.

    “As for Wolverine calling Sabretooth a “kike”, that was a typing error.”

    So they say, but it did happen.

    “3. What was Kirkman’s suggestion? Could you please post a link to his suggestion?”

    Marvel and DC should cater to the kids and Image and others should write for the adults. Look up “Kirkman mission statement” on CBR and you might find it.

    “4. Marvel had gay characters in their comics when they were still suitable for all ages and carried the Comics Code.”

    Right, this was back when nobody in the mainstream gave a crap about comics. There’s a lot of attention on comics now, and fringe groups are looking for any excuse to go after people these days. If it’s not a problem, then marry Cyclops and Iceman in the Marvel Adventures (read: all-ages)books and see what happens. I wasn’t saying they didn’t exist back then, but nobody cared enough to pay attention. Do it now and Fox News devotes a whole week to it.

    “Even when Northstar’s coming out issue of ALPHA FIGHT made mainstream news media, the story quickly died down with little or no negative reaction towards Marvel. ”

    Because that went along the lines of “hi, i’m gay and now let’s go be normal and beat up the bad peoples and forget I said it.” At least the homosexual characters now get to act like it and express themselves accordingly (see Runaways.) But if you want all-ages content, you won’t get more than “hi, i’m a homosexual” and character will now be referred to as “the gay one” or that fact will just be ignored completely. And it just goes to prove that the only one from back then I remembered was Northstar and I bought and read all of those comics you listed EXCEPT Alpha Flight.

    All-ages isn’t the answer, but Marvel should re-evaluate what they put out there on a regular basis.

    ____________________________________________

    1. Picking one month out of the year in order to prove your point, does not make your claim truthful. IIRC (and I could be wrong), the reason DC beat Marvel in that month was because DC put out more books then Marvel during that time.

    2. Millar,Morrison,PAD,Busiek,Waid,Perez,Pacheco,Davis,Larocca,Chen, Ellis,and Romita jr are all “popular” creators who worked for Marvel shortly before Quesada became EIC. Those creators names alone might not have sold books, but that was during a time when it was all about the song and not about the singer. It could be argue, based on current sales, that today’s current “popular” creators aren’t able to sell books with their names alone.

    3. The attitude the mainstream media had towards comics back in those days, is the same as they have these days.

  35. Synsidar says:

    This analysis of Marvel’s business practices prior to, during, and after bankruptcy implicitly gives some credit to Quesada for the turnaround:

    On the revenue side, they mended relationships with the industry’s top talent, many of whom had left Marvel during the bankruptcy or before because of artistic reasons, to improve the quality of their product so that sales would increase again.

    Most of the credit for the improved financial results goes to improved business practices and personnel choices, though. The writers also make a suggestion:

    4. Segment the market into children readers and adult readers and cater unique titles to each segment.

    Were Marvel to publish titles for only two segments, adults and children, there would be no need for ratings. The ’80s approach worked, in terns of sophisticated content; publishing for adults would also work. What doesn’t work is aiming content at the imagined teenage readership, when the actual readership is older.

    SRS

  36. The Quitter says:

    “1. Picking one month out of the year in order to prove your point, does not make your claim truthful. IIRC (and I could be wrong), the reason DC beat Marvel in that month was because DC put out more books then Marvel during that time.”

    It proves we remember things differently. Quesada took over in 2000. I picked the month immediately preceeding 2000 and the next month I could find which gave Quesada enough time to make changes to see if it affected the sales numbers. Looking back at my source (comichron.com), DC (red) is above Marvel (yellow) from end of 98-end of 01. After 01, Marvel is above DC until present with a few exceptions and close calls. The facts don’t lie.

    “Millar,Morrison,PAD,Busiek,Waid,Perez,Pacheco,Davis,Larocca,Chen, Ellis,and Romita jr are all “popular” creators who worked for Marvel shortly before Quesada became EIC. ”

    I said nobody wanted to work there. Somebody had to work there if they wanted to make money in comics, and since DC was full up, they had to go somewhere. Doesn’t mean they were happy doing it, and it doesn’t mean nobody was working there. Also, it is a generalization, but there was a lot of talk about it at the time and the reason Quesada was made EIC was because the Marvel Knights creators enjoyed the work environment he and Palmiotti created, and several of the people you listed were working on Marvel Knights books during those years in the tank and Marvel Knights may be the only reason they were working for Marvel at all. Also, I didn’t mean that their names alone were selling the books. I meant that it looked as if the names on the books that were selling (namely DC books) weren’t employed by Marvel. Several probably worked for both because the rent doesn’t pay itself.

    “3. The attitude the mainstream media had towards comics back in those days, is the same as they have these days. ”

    Here we disagree again. Creative team changes don’t hit the evening news, but it doesn’t take much for the 24-hour news cycle to grab onto something and make it a big deal now. They’re looking to fill time, and comics can be just as interesting as politics if the subject matter fits. It took Superman dying for anyone to really pay attention even though I believe Alpha Flight 106 was published before that and received minimal attention… compare that to today with Dead Cap and Obamania, and it’s not even close.

    “Most of the credit for the improved financial results goes to improved business practices and personnel choices, though.”

    wouldn’t they have resulted from Quesada making those decisions or someone else doing so on his recommendation? I don’t want to give him sole credit, but Wraith isn’t giving him any.

    “Were Marvel to publish titles for only two segments, adults and children, there would be no need for ratings.”

    or paychecks because hardly anyone would be buying them.

    “What doesn’t work is aiming content at the imagined teenage readership, when the actual readership is older.”

    Seems to be working fine, actually. There is no “imagined teenage readership.” There is the actual teenaged readership which reads the comics that interest them and are allowed to buy. There’s the adult readership which reads the comics that interest them. And then there’s the youth readership which reads the comics that are appropriate for their age group. If you cut out the teen or mid-range level, then you are only able to have adults who still want to read adult comics and kids who probably have a small interest in reading already. There has to be a transitional period that interests people too old for kids comics and too young for adult comics, and whoa, look at that, most of Marvel and DC’s output is directed at that audience. This is not a coincidence. The average age of a mainline Marvel or DC reader may be unusually high, but that doesn’t prove there isn’t a teenage audience. And assuming there isn’t one will cause your comic book business to disappear. There’s a reason the PG-13 rating was invented, and there’s another reason for the amount of pressure filmmakers feel to aim for that rating or water down their film to fit that rating. If kids and adults were the only two groups to write for, Marvel Adventures and MAX titles would be the top selling (and in your ideal world, the only published) books.

    I would say that Marvel has done #4, but they have done it in addition to their mainstream product not in place of it. The highest profile books have to be middle-of-the-road product in order to attract the widest possible audience. Film has proven this. They need to be accessible to younger readers which are allowed to have them by their parents, but they also need to be challenging enough to keep the older audience interested as well. They’re walking a tightrope, and I think they’re doing a good job of it. There’s always room for improvement (hated House of M and Spider-Man’s deal with the devil), but their entire way of doing things isn’t in question because of some content concerns and the old looking out for the children angle.

  37. Wraith says:

    “1. Picking one month out of the year in order to prove your point, does not make your claim truthful. IIRC (and I could be wrong), the reason DC beat Marvel in that month was because DC put out more books then Marvel during that time.”

    It proves we remember things differently. Quesada took over in 2000. I picked the month immediately preceeding 2000 and the next month I could find which gave Quesada enough time to make changes to see if it affected the sales numbers. Looking back at my source (comichron.com), DC (red) is above Marvel (yellow) from end of 98-end of 01. After 01, Marvel is above DC until present with a few exceptions and close calls. The facts don’t lie.

    “Millar,Morrison,PAD,Busiek,Waid,Perez,Pacheco,Davis,Larocca,Chen, Ellis,and Romita jr are all “popular” creators who worked for Marvel shortly before Quesada became EIC. ”

    I said nobody wanted to work there. Somebody had to work there if they wanted to make money in comics, and since DC was full up, they had to go somewhere. Doesn’t mean they were happy doing it, and it doesn’t mean nobody was working there. Also, it is a generalization, but there was a lot of talk about it at the time and the reason Quesada was made EIC was because the Marvel Knights creators enjoyed the work environment he and Palmiotti created, and several of the people you listed were working on Marvel Knights books during those years in the tank and Marvel Knights may be the only reason they were working for Marvel at all. Also, I didn’t mean that their names alone were selling the books. I meant that it looked as if the names on the books that were selling (namely DC books) weren’t employed by Marvel. Several probably worked for both because the rent doesn’t pay itself.

    “3. The attitude the mainstream media had towards comics back in those days, is the same as they have these days. ”

    Here we disagree again. Creative team changes don’t hit the evening news, but it doesn’t take much for the 24-hour news cycle to grab onto something and make it a big deal now. They’re looking to fill time, and comics can be just as interesting as politics if the subject matter fits. It took Superman dying for anyone to really pay attention even though I believe Alpha Flight 106 was published before that and received minimal attention… compare that to today with Dead Cap and Obamania, and it’s not even close.

    “Most of the credit for the improved financial results goes to improved business practices and personnel choices, though.”

    wouldn’t they have resulted from Quesada making those decisions or someone else doing so on his recommendation? I don’t want to give him sole credit, but Wraith isn’t giving him any.

    ___________________________________________

    1. No, it proves that you are twisting the facts to prove your point. Like I said in my previous post, DC dominated Marvel back in December of 1999 because DC put out about 40 more titles then Marvel in that month. And yet, Marvel still had 39 titles in the top 100 vs DC having 37 titles in the top 100. Marvel also dominated the top 10 in that month. And they did it all without using gimmicks like a NO OVER PRINT POLICY,variant covers,and crossovers. Now to be fair, in 2002 Marvel had 50 titles in the top 100 vs DC’s 39 titles. I should also point out that DC was putting out 20 LESS titles in Jan 2002 then they were in Dec 1999 (94 in 1999 vs 74 in 2002) and that Marvel had their NO OVER PRINT POLICY and variant cover gimmicks in full affect in 2002.

    2. I think it’s ridiculous to claim that no one wanted to work for Marvel under the previous editorial regime based on the (I assume) comments made by a few creators who had problems with the previous regime. And NONE of the creators I listed were working on any MK books during that time. And if the RUMOR is to be believed, the only reason Quesada got the EIC job is because no one else working at Marvel wanted it.

    3. Actually, we are not disagreeing about the level of interest from the mainstream media in comics. Like I said, the mainstream medias interest in comics is the same as it was back in the 80’s and 90’s. Gimmick stories featuring the death,marriage,divorce,or the coming out of the closet of a major character will attract the mainstream media. The death of Captain America is a repeat of the death of Superman in terms of the amount of mainstream media attention those 2 gimmicks garnered.

    4. Quesada has little or no say on the business decisions at Marvel. So no, no one above him does anything based on his recommendation.

  38. The Beat says:

    Oi gevalt, anyone but me who posts in this thread is now Officially a Holiday Loser.

  39. The Quitter--Holiday Loser says:

    “1. No, it proves that you are twisting the facts to prove your point.”

    Nope. Sales don’t lie. I didn’t twist any facts. I even went back to the source and took a span of 3 years where DC was consistently beating Marvel to prove the point even more, but apparently facts are not good enough to prove anything.

    “2. I think it’s ridiculous to claim that no one wanted to work for Marvel under the previous editorial regime based on the (I assume) comments made by a few creators who had problems with the previous regime. And NONE of the creators I listed were working on any MK books during that time. And if the RUMOR is to be believed, the only reason Quesada got the EIC job is because no one else working at Marvel wanted it.”

    You’re clearly just anti-Quesada. I admitted that it was a generalization and it’s also an exaggeration. People do those sorts of things sometime. People were not happy with Marvel from the top down, and the only ones anybody was happy with were Joe Quesada and Jimmy Palmiotti. That’s probably why he got the job.

    Fantastic Four: 1234 by Grant Morrison
    Marvel Boy by Grant Morrison
    Millar worked on Ultimate books and then transitioned to Marvel Knights books
    Kurt Busiek was on Avengers and mostly getting what he wanted out of that deal and working with George Perez, so okay, he might have been happy.
    Warren Ellis wasn’t really doing much for Marvel pre-Quesada, and later came back to Marvel because he had heard good things about what it was like to work there again under Quesada.

    People were generally not interested in working for Marvel or buying what Marvel was selling. I’m not making it up. The facts needed a little bit of checking, and I knew some of the people you listed had worked on Marvel Knights books but the only one who did so before Quesada became EIC was Grant Morrison so that at least proves you wrong that “NONE” of them did so. Marvel Boy may have been released after Quesada was made EIC (as I don’t have exact dates), but it was clearly in the works before he was promoted.

    “3. Actually, we are not disagreeing about the level of interest from the mainstream media in comics.”

    No, we’re in disagreement about it because you think it’s the same as it always was. Yes, they generally ignore comics, but now they’re likely to make a big deal out of nothing to fill time that didn’t need filling back in the 90’s. All it takes is one irate conservative to send Fox News on a witchhunt. But maybe you have a different idea of mainstream media than I do.

    “4. Quesada has little or no say on the business decisions at Marvel. So no, no one above him does anything based on his recommendation. ”

    and you know this because you work there and are above him?

    My question is more about what exactly falls under “business practices and personnel decisions?” The hiring of editors, artists, writers, etc would clearly fall under Quesada and fit under personnel decisions unless that’s not the personnel being referenced. Since it wasn’t your quote, I obviously wasn’t asking you, but thanks for making another effort to slam Quesada.

  40. Wraith says:

    “Nope. Sales don’t lie. I didn’t twist any facts. I even went back to the source and took a span of 3 years where DC was consistently beating Marvel to prove the point even more, but apparently facts are not good enough to prove anything.

    You’re clearly just anti-Quesada. I admitted that it was a generalization and it’s also an exaggeration. People do those sorts of things sometime. People were not happy with Marvel from the top down, and the only ones anybody was happy with were Joe Quesada and Jimmy Palmiotti. That’s probably why he got the job.

    Fantastic Four: 1234 by Grant Morrison
    Marvel Boy by Grant Morrison
    Millar worked on Ultimate books and then transitioned to Marvel Knights books
    Kurt Busiek was on Avengers and mostly getting what he wanted out of that deal and working with George Perez, so okay, he might have been happy.
    Warren Ellis wasn’t really doing much for Marvel pre-Quesada, and later came back to Marvel because he had heard good things about what it was like to work there again under Quesada.

    People were generally not interested in working for Marvel or buying what Marvel was selling. I’m not making it up. The facts needed a little bit of checking, and I knew some of the people you listed had worked on Marvel Knights books but the only one who did so before Quesada became EIC was Grant Morrison so that at least proves you wrong that “NONE” of them did so. Marvel Boy may have been released after Quesada was made EIC (as I don’t have exact dates), but it was clearly in the works before he was promoted.

    No, we’re in disagreement about it because you think it’s the same as it always was. Yes, they generally ignore comics, but now they’re likely to make a big deal out of nothing to fill time that didn’t need filling back in the 90’s. All it takes is one irate conservative to send Fox News on a witchhunt. But maybe you have a different idea of mainstream media than I do.

    and you know this because you work there and are above him?

    My question is more about what exactly falls under “business practices and personnel decisions?” The hiring of editors, artists, writers, etc would clearly fall under Quesada and fit under personnel decisions unless that’s not the personnel being referenced. Since it wasn’t your quote, I obviously wasn’t asking you, but thanks for making another effort to slam Quesada.”

    _________________________________________

    1. You’re right, sales don’t lie. And based on the sales data from the site you got your info from, Marvel books regularly on average outsold DC books, without the help of gimmicks. Again, the only reason DC had a higher market and dollar share then Marvel, is because they had put out more product then Marvel during that time.

    2. My only problem with Quesada is that he is (IMO) a crappy EIC. And if I really was as anti Quesada as you claim I am, I wouldn’t defend his decision to end the Spidey/MJ marriage (although I think that the way he ended the marriage was pretty damn stupid).

    IIRC, Morrison’s FF:1234 came out shortly after Quesada became EIC, but I could be wrong. Also, both Morrison and Millar co-wrote the SKRULL KILL KREW for Marvel a few years before Quesada became EIC. And Millar also wrote that X-Men one shot that showed how the comic books in the MU portrayed the X-Men (some of those ideas from that one shot were even later used in his ULTIMATE X-MEN run).

    Pre-Quesada, Ellis wrote DOOM 2099,a 2099 one shot,RUINS,DRUID, HELLSTORM,EXCALIBUR,SATANA (which never saw publication due to the mature subject matter of the book),and the COUNTER X books (X-MAN, X-FORCE,and GENERATION X).

    3. When Spidey got married in the 80’s, it got mainstream media attention. When Robin died in the 80’s, it got mainstream media attention. When Northstar came out of the closet in the 90’s, it got mainstream media attention. When Superman died in the 90’s, it got mainstream media attention. When Superman got a new costume and new powers in the 90’s, it got mainstream media attention. When Superman revealed his secret identity to Lois and proposed to her in the 90’s, it got mainstream media attention. When Byrne revamped Superman in the 80’s, it got mainstream media attention. When the word “kike” was accidentally used in an issue of WOLVERINE, it got mainstream media attention. This is no different from the mainstream media attention given to THE TRUTH,gay Rawhide Kid,lesbian Batwoman,the death of Batman, the death of Captain America,Obama meeting Spider-Man,Spidey unmasking,Spidey’s marriage ending,Arana being wrongly tout as the first Latina superhero,and IDENTITY CRISIS.

    4. Anyone with an ounce of common sense knows that the EIC has no say in the business decisions of the company.

  41. The Quitter--Holiday Loser says:

    “1. You’re right, sales don’t lie. And based on the sales data from the site you got your info from, Marvel books regularly on average outsold DC books, without the help of gimmicks. Again, the only reason DC had a higher market and dollar share then Marvel, is because they had put out more product then Marvel during that time. ”

    and Marvel is on top right now despite getting blown away by Blackest Night. Attempt to justify your point of view however you want. Marvel was at a standstill creatively and was riding a sinking ship before Quesada turned the company around. They were second to DC.

    November 2009: Items in Top 300

    Marvel
    98

    DC
    82

    So Marvel is on top now because they put out more stuff? How simplistic. I suppose if I start up a publishing company and publish more comics than Marvel and DC I’ll win too. Good to know that quantity wins out.

    “My only problem with Quesada is that he is (IMO) a crappy EIC.”

    And my problem with your problem is that he isn’t a crappy EIC.

    “IIRC, Morrison’s FF:1234 came out shortly after Quesada became EIC, but I could be wrong. ”

    “Morrison and Millar co-wrote the SKRULL KILL KREW for Marvel a few years before Quesada became EIC”

    Yes, lots of people have written things for Marvel before Quesada became EIC. When you’re talking years, it’s irrelevant, and depending on what you mean by “shortly”, the book could have been done before Quesada became EIC and published after.

    “Pre-Quesada, Ellis wrote DOOM 2099,a 2099 one shot,RUINS,DRUID, HELLSTORM,EXCALIBUR,SATANA (which never saw publication due to the mature subject matter of the book),and the COUNTER X books (X-MAN, X-FORCE,and GENERATION X).”

    Which supports what I said. and again, all of this was either written or done before Quesada became EIC and Ellis had already severed ties to Marvel before that happened and before Quesada changed things for the better. Don’t take my word for it, okay, ask Warren Ellis.

    3. I disagree, so give it a rest.

    “4. Anyone with an ounce of common sense knows that the EIC has no say in the business decisions of the company.”

    anyone with an ounce of common sense knows better than to answer a question that wasn’t directed toward them. As I said, it depends on what is called “business decisions”, and you don’t need to be a prick about things you know nothing about since it wasn’t your damn quote. You are in no position to say what Joe Quesada has or does not have a say in no matter what you think you know about his job title, and neither do I. That’s why I asked the question of the person who could potentially have some REAL information to impart. So take your snobbery elsewhere.

  42. whew, this is some debate. can’t really comment on the sales of marvel and dc comics from ten years ago, ’cause really – who cares. marvel was going through so much crap in those days (between take overs by billionaires and going public and in house fighting) that just pointing to sales alone as the only factor of how healthy they were as a company at the time doesn’t look at the company’s problems as a whole. as for nobody wanting to work at marvel in those days before joeQ, i remember hearing all that and for some of the writers mentioned above it’s probably true and for others probably not. most of these guys are freelancers and like most freelancers in any industry, they take any job that comes their way, if they like who they work for or not. as for joeQ, i’ll admit, i’m not a big fan of his. i felt that he would let some of the writers have too much freedom in their writing without enough editorial control over what they were doing, but we could endlessly debate that. as far as joeQ and marvel’s business decisions, i’ve read interviews( don’t ask me where i read them, i don’t remember, but i’m sure you can find then without too much trouble) with him saying that he has no say in what marvel’s video dept. does or what their toy dept. does, but i’m sure all these departments work together to help bring about product and i would guess that joeQ has major pull in his dept. ( the comics division of marvel ), how much pull that is, i have no idea. as for the media, both quitter and wraith are correct. the media does give about the same amount of attention to a comic book “event” as it always has, but it’s also true that at anytime someone in the media could get a bug up their ass about a overly violent or sexual depiction in the latest issue of “thunderbolts” and make a major stink about it. to my knowledge this hasn’t happened, and if it happens at fox…, considering those folks bitch about almost everything under the sun and is quickly forgotten ’cause we are talking about a twenty four hour news cycle here, i doubt them bitching about a comic book will garner much notice (tho’ i do seem to remember a few years back the “700 club” complaining about comic books once).as for the comics, you can write about any subject that can be read by both kids and adults if it’s done in a certain way. it’s funny when marvel in the 60’s started getting attention, they were writing stories that appealed to kids on one level and collage students on another. there were even adults at the time that got a kick out of the books. so here we are many years later and for some reason we can’t (or refuse ) to recapture the magic of those comics. i say that we can (hope i don’t a call from the white house using that phrase). i understand that there are those that don’t want to go back, but remember, this is (was) primarily a childrens medium, for the young and the young at heart. do all comics have to be aimed at kids, of course not. or all super hero books aimed at kids, again, of course not. just as an all ages book does not have to be something just for kids. ’cause lets face it, we’ve been reading all ages books since the ’60s, ’70s, ’80s, ’90s, and beyond and most of us here are life long fans. what could really be killing the comic book industry is the fact that the majority of books are four bucks a pop. but thats a rant for another day.

  43. The Quitter--Holiday Loser says:

    I was with you, abc, up until this point: “remember, this is (was) primarily a childrens medium.” I disagree with that. I don’t think any medium is age-specific.

    As for the business decision bit, that’s why I asked. What creator to hire or fire and changing Marvel’s output to have a greater number of TPBs per year are business decisions which Quesada could have made or at least had a hand in making, but other decisions like selling off Toy Biz or Fleer would probably have nothing to do with him. So I asked the person with the info. “Business decisions” is a fairly broad category and doesn’t eliminate the involvement of Quesada on the basis of the term itself. But thank you for mentioning what you remembered.

  44. quitter said: “i don’t think any medium is age specific.
    actually all mediums are age specific when it comes to what is being presented to which audience of a certain age. i don’t think anyone here would think porn videos are appropiate for kids and as for comics i don’t think anyone here would think cherry poptart comics are appropiate for children (if you don’t know who that is go to the “comic art fans” website, put cherry poptart in the search engine and check out some of the “tamer” renditions of the character). when i mentioned the medium being for children i was talking about where comics were fifty to seventy years ago, when kids were the primary readers of comics. that changed in the ’60s and ’70s as kids and college students kept reading these books even after they reached the age when they weren’t supposed to reading comics anymore, which caused the fan base to become older and older, which has lead us to this day and age where now we have fans and pros alike debating which direction(adult vs all ages vs kids friendly) comics (or at least super hero comics) should go in. truly, comics can speak to anyone of any age and comics should be produced for all age groups that enjoy the medium. if i get to kick the bucket a very, very old man, they’ll probably find me keeled over with a comic book in my hand (hopefully it won’t be with a cherry poptart comic, that would be too embarrassing).

  45. Wraith says:

    and Marvel is on top right now despite getting blown away by Blackest Night. Attempt to justify your point of view however you want. Marvel was at a standstill creatively and was riding a sinking ship before Quesada turned the company around. They were second to DC.

    November 2009: Items in Top 300

    Marvel
    98

    DC
    82

    So Marvel is on top now because they put out more stuff? How simplistic. I suppose if I start up a publishing company and publish more comics than Marvel and DC I’ll win too. Good to know that quantity wins out.

    Yes, lots of people have written things for Marvel before Quesada became EIC. When you’re talking years, it’s irrelevant, and depending on what you mean by “shortly”, the book could have been done before Quesada became EIC and published after.

    Which supports what I said. and again, all of this was either written or done before Quesada became EIC and Ellis had already severed ties to Marvel before that happened and before Quesada changed things for the better. Don’t take my word for it, okay, ask Warren Ellis.

    3. I disagree, so give it a rest.

    anyone with an ounce of common sense knows better than to answer a question that wasn’t directed toward them. As I said, it depends on what is called “business decisions”, and you don’t need to be a prick about things you know nothing about since it wasn’t your damn quote. You are in no position to say what Joe Quesada has or does not have a say in no matter what you think you know about his job title, and neither do I. That’s why I asked the question of the person who could potentially have some REAL information to impart. So take your snobbery elsewhere.

    ____________________________________________

    1. So by using your same logic, it could be said that Marvel was in bad shape under Shooter (sales wise) and the company turned around under Defalco since sales rose really high after he became EIC. And I would hardly call what Quesada has done to the comic division (in terms of story content) “creative”, since many of the story ideas that came from Marvel under him are rehashed story ideas (both published and rejected past ideas) from the 80’s and 90’s.

    The only reason BLACKEST NIGHT “blew away” Marvel recently is because BK is a gimmick wrapped in a sales stunt. It’s all smoke and mirrors.

    You keep comparing the market share and dollar share of pre-Quesada Marvel and Marvel under Quesada as concrete proof that he turned the company around. I’m trying to tell you that Marvel was still beating DC pre-Quesada in terms of SALES WITHING THE TOP 100. In other words, Marvel comics on average, sold better then DC titles before and after Quesada became EIC.

    2. The thing is, those creators worked for Marvel under the previous EIC and didn’t complain about their time there (at least not publicly). And we can flip the script and say that Quesada has driven away several creators since he became EIC (Byrne,Starlin,Morrison,and Weinberg).

    3. Did Ellis really severe ties to Marvel before Quesada became EIC, or did he complete his contracted work on the Counter X books (which was to write the first arcs of the revamp,plot the 2nd,and let the scripters take over fully with the 3rd arc).? I say the latter.

    4. You’re wrong, give it a rest.

    5. I chose to answer that question because this is an open forum and the last time I checked all general questions in this forums, like the one you asked, are fare game. I apologize for coming of snarky, but that was not my intent. It’s pretty common knowledge (or at least it should be) that the EIC has very little or no say in the business end of the comic book publishing division.

  46. The Quitter--Holiday Loser says:

    “actually all mediums are age specific”

    medium–a.A means of mass communication, such as newpapers, magazines, radio, or television.

    b. a.A specific kind of artistic technique or means of expression as determined by the materials used or the creative methods involved

    Comics are a medium. They are not age-specific. No medium is.

    ” don’t think anyone here would think porn videos are appropiate for kids and as for comics i don’t think anyone here would think cherry poptart comics are appropiate for children”

    porn videos are not a medium. Videos are. Cherry Poptart comics are not a medium. Comics are. A target audience for a medium is age-specific. Media is not.

    good day.

  47. The Quitter says:

    “1. So by using your same logic, it could be said that Marvel was in bad shape under Shooter (sales wise) and the company turned around under Defalco since sales rose really high after he became EIC. And I would hardly call what Quesada has done to the comic division (in terms of story content) “creative”, since many of the story ideas that came from Marvel under him are rehashed story ideas (both published and rejected past ideas) from the 80’s and 90’s.”

    I do not look to Marvel or DC for originality. I may not agree with some of Quesada’s decisions, but I do agree that he turned Marvel around and gave it life again and he did that by forging healthy relationships with creative talent and making smart decisions about how things were run. Disagree all you like.

    “2. The thing is, those creators worked for Marvel under the previous EIC and didn’t complain about their time there (at least not publicly). And we can flip the script and say that Quesada has driven away several creators since he became EIC (Byrne,Starlin,Morrison,and Weinberg).”

    Which creators. I heard plenty of complaints about Marvel before Quesada took over. I know nothing about Byrne, Starlin, Morrison, and whoever Weinberg is. John Byrne gets along with no one. Jim Starlin can’t sell books at DC either, and Grant Morrison is eccentric to say the least. These are not justifications. I know of no complaints from those 4 guys about Marvel. Not saying they don’t exist. However, I heard plenty about Marvel before Quesada. Also, there’s a difference between a legitimate complaint and a complaint coming from being told “no” about some crazy idea. Marvel’s problems extended beyond creator disapproval over storylines and that’s the root of the problem before Quesada and that’s the solution for the improvement under Quesada. Disagree all you like.

    “3. Did Ellis really severe ties to Marvel before Quesada became EIC, or did he complete his contracted work on the Counter X books (which was to write the first arcs of the revamp,plot the 2nd,and let the scripters take over fully with the 3rd arc).? I say the latter.”

    Say what you like. When Bendis is 2 years ahead on his books, I don’t think it inconceivable that Ellis was done and gone before Quesada was promoted. In fact, I’ve been to several panels which featured Warren Ellis where many subjects have come up and he’s had plenty to say. Have you?

    “4. You’re wrong, give it a rest.”

    Ah, yes… I am thoroughly convinced. What a skillful counter-argument. I’m not wrong, but you clearly aren’t capable of understanding why so I attempted to walk away Nothing like getting a bullet-hole through your white flag.

    “5. I chose to answer that question because this is an open forum and the last time I checked all general questions in this forums, like the one you asked, are fare game. I apologize for coming of snarky, but that was not my intent. It’s pretty common knowledge (or at least it should be) that the EIC has very little or no say in the business end of the comic book publishing division.”

    “blah blah blah, I think I know everything. Just read my comments on the sales threads to learn how to fix comics! © Wraith” so now it’s “very little or no say”. Looks like you lost some common sense in the time between posts. Your intent was to be a blowhard know it all, and I am now giving you that same consideration you tend to show others. You chose to answer that question because you think you know the answer, but your willingness to state an opinion seems to be inversely proportional to your knowledge of the subject.

    I am abdicating the holiday loser throne as I will not post again. good day.

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