Off The Panel: Quality Vs. Quantity And Cyclops!
You’ll never hear this enough, but never has it meant so much for comics. Everyone will say quality over quantity, but right now it goes both ways for comics and how these companies take their approach to bringing up sales and bringing in new readers. It’s all about what’s best for business and between both these companies seem to want to have something to offer more of than the others and do so better. That is the best way to establish your fanbase and show them what your priorities are.
In terms of Quantity, you’d turn to Image and Dark Horse. Now you’d think I’d first go to Marvel and DC, but they have already established themselves as the go to publishers for one that is dominantly superhero titles. So getting back to Image and Dark Horse, both most should already know are putting out a bunch of creator owned comics. A bunch would actually be an understatement, but you get the point with how they have prioritized giving these writers and artists the chance to show what they are capable of when giving freedom to do something new. Now any person could question why they are putting so many out there instead of just looking to put out the best. But fact of the matter is that any one of them could be the next big thing. Doesn’t have to be the most epic storyline ever or have the best artist ever on it, it just has to be something that people care to follow. You can toss out ten and if only half of them are selling, you still would have failed knowing that you put your faith into what you think would sell rather than thinking of what others would put their money into. It’s about showing that you want these books to succeed and see enough potential in them that you will take that risk saying we will have over 30 in just the first half of the year having faith in the talent behind them. Image has already proved this in the second half of last year with creator owned titles. There are many to choose from out there from Image at this moment and they have a following. Any one of them could have flopped and they did not because of what they have to offer.
Now if we take a look at those who look towards quality over quantity, Valiant is where you look to. This past week they have announce their VALIANT FIRST Initiative. One which gives readers clear and accessible jumping-on points into Valiant’s award-winning publishing line. The first thing that people would always ask is what stays and what goes, but Valiant was quick to giving a response on this and one which you could applaud because they know what they’re doing. You won’t see Valiant putting out more than nine core titles a month in 2014. They have made it clear that they are focused on quality over quantity, and that they’ll be working hard to make sure that every VALIANT FIRST book is as good as anything else in the industry. It works for them and there is no doubting that. Valiant has created a world where these books have concentrated stories and exist in the same world where their actions can have consequences for everyone else. That is what we have seen with Harbinger Wars, that is what we are seeing with Unity, and that is what we will be seeing when Armor Hunters begins as it leads into some of these VALIANT FIRST titles.
So as you can see, when it comes to comics, “quality over quantity” doesn’t mean the same anymore.Someone can’t look to these publishers and judge them based on that assumption and still assume to understand their intentions. They all have their business model and it changes depending on the direction of their stories and what people want from them as certain things work, and others may not. It is ultimately up to them to decide which one takes priority over the other and this year we see that line drawn in the sand as to where they stand.
Yes, yes, this is actually happening as many of us know and for me this was something very big. Some of you may have already heard what I had to say about this on the podcast, but for those of you who have not I’ll address it again. This was a long time coming for one of the founding members of the X-Men. While this is a time to rejoice because it’s finally happening, it’s sad that all these years it has been Wolverine to get that time in the spotlight. Anyways what makes this series great is that this is a story you can’t get anywhere else involving Scott. This is him at an age where he has not seen his father since he threw him and his brother out of a plane. 10 years lost for Corsair that this new series will attempt to recreate as only it can.
This is a Scott who has not been through everything his present self has and is still at a point where his innocence remains intact. Now having that father and son reunion and focus which should allow us to see him in a different light where he expresses those emotions he tends to keep to himself. As we know Cyclops isn’t the best at expressing how he feels and this new series should allow us as fans of the character to better attach ourselves to someone who has always been more of a figure-head than a person. Overall it’s just great that it looks as if the creative team for the X-Men are saying, we have these younger X-Men here for a while, why not take that time to really do something with them. Separating Cyclops from the rest to take this adventure is the best thing they could go with and hopefully that will be successful come May.