Digital comics have grown in several different directions over the last few years, but one of the most interesting developments is how they've enabled people to try new ways of distributing comics, marketing to readers, and building an audience. The Humble Bundle is perhaps one of the most fascinating new models; a pay what you want program that works with publishers to offer huge collections of comics in one go.
From the very first Image Comics bundle last year right through to the new Gamer Comics bundle with Dark Horse, companies have seen incredible sales through this system, expanding audiences by staggering degrees. With Humble Bundles now a routine mini-event for comics readers, ComicsAlliance spoke to the company's director of books, Kelley Allen, about how so much has changed over just one year, and where she sees Humble Bundle heading over the next few years.
We're nowhere to be found in the Star Trek movies, or the Star Wars movies, or Jurassic Park, or The Fast & The Furious. To the best of my knowledge we're not in Mission: Impossible, or Planet of the Apes, or Die Hard, or The Dark Knight, or Transformers. We're not in Lord of the Rings, despite how it may seem, and we're not obviously in Harry Potter, though the author says we're there. We're not in Spider-Man, and somehow we're not even in the X-Men movies, though they are at least partly about us. We might be in The Hunger Games.
We are in James Bond. Of all the big movie franchises, that's the one that's really taken the time to present a handful of gay or bisexual characters in its fifty year history; but as damaged killers, and as uniquely challenging romantic conquests. And we're definitely not in the Marvel movies. Based on recent comments by Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige, we may not turn up there any time soon. You see, Feige isn't going to force it; he'll find an "organic" way to introduce LGBTQ characters to his fictional world.
ComicsAlliance Presents “Kate or Die,” a series of exclusive comic strips created by one of our favorite cartoonists, Kate Leth! In this episode, Kate grabs the rainbow paint to celebrate an amazing landmark moment in the advancement of LGBTQ rights, with the Supreme Court ruling that ended restrictions on letting people in the US marry the person they love. From everyone here at ComicsAlliance; we hope you had a happy Pride!
On his new site SKTCHD, David Harper, formerly of Multiversity Comics, is continuing to write his signature longform pieces on the comic book industry, and on June 16, he posted the results and his analysis of his survey of comics professionals. The main analysis piece is well worth reading, as it breaks down responses about everything from income, to free time, to publisher relations. Harper drilled down further, however, to focus on the relationship between gender and income in the comics industry.
As readers will know from our weekly Best Cosplay Ever feature, we’re big fans of cosplay at ComicsAlliance. The comics, sci-fi, gaming, and fantasy communities have proved time and again their exceptional talents for homemade disguises and superheroic sartorial excellence, and all of their craft and skill will be on display this weekend at HeroesCon. Our chief cosplay correspondent Betty Felon is on hand to document as much of it as she can.
Scroll down for some of the very finest cosplay from HeroesCon!
Publishers Weekly released findings from their comics retailer survey last week, and once more all signs point to growth, particularly in regards to female readers. This is great news not just for people who care about representation in comics, but for people who care about the health of the comics industry. An influx of younger readers of any gender is what the comics industry needs so that publishers can engage them and keep them reading for years to come. It seems like a wide variety of publishers are getting this job done.
With comic book conventions springing up all over the country, and the biggest con of all, Comic-Con International in San Diego, starting in a month, it may be about now that comics creators are feeling rising anxiety about selling their goods in Artist Alleys. Fortunately, Karama Horne of Derpygurl has some helpful tips for Artist Alley exhibitors, “25 Reasons Why You Don’t Make Any Money at Comic Cons.”
This week, IDW launched something new and different --- an art gallery. The San Diego Comic Art Gallery is an interesting addition to both IDW's scope of business and to San Diego's comics-related offerings. The first artist featured for this gallery? None other than Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles creator Kevin Eastman. Check out the gallery below for a look at the launch of the gallery, the art included in the show, and IDW's new offices.
Yesterday Marvel Comics released the first teaser image for All New, All Different Marvel, the post-Secret Wars relaunch for the Marvel Universe. Editor-in-chief Axel Alonso and senior VP of sales and marketing David Gabriel hit the media to publicize it, Alonso telling USA Today that the new lineup of characters and creators will show “diversity in terms of gender and ethnicity.” The image itself highlights a lot of the company’s recent efforts in diversity, with characters like Ultimate Spider-Man Miles Morales, Ms. Marvel, Captain America Sam Wilson, and Spider-Gwen getting visible spotlights. The image also included an unexpected appearance by the Native American superhero Red Wolf.
On face value, rejuvenating Red Wolf is a fantastic idea, an opportunity to do something that I stated the need for the last time I talked about indigenous superheroes: increase the presence of North America’s first peoples in the medium. But there's a problem.
VixenVarsity.com is a fascinating site full of instructive "courses" on a wide range of topics, and site creator MizCaramelVixen has a passion for comics and a lot of thoughts about diversity in the industry, which she's spun into posts, a hashtag, and a website under the banner BlackComicsMonth (which is every month).
This weekend, MizCaramelVixen can be seen at the first ever Black Comics Month panel on Saturday at 1:15pm in Theater 2 during Special Edition NYC. We sat down with her to discuss the motivations behind BlackComicsMonth, what people can expect from the panel, and the next steps in her diversity campaign.
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