Eric Stephenson, publisher at Image Comics, has become known in recent years for his speeches at events like Image Expo, which often attempt to rally the comic book industry towards a common goal --- while also reminding people that Image is already achieving that goal, and is therefore the best.
Today at the Tenth Annual ComicsPRO Membership Meeting in Portland, Oregon, Stephenson spoke to the comics retailer community about concerns creators have over the health of the industry, and fears that publishers are chasing short term gain over long term growth.
Welcome back to the ComicsAlliance podcast, covering the latest comic book entertainment news topics. Joining Senior Editors Andy Khouri and Caleb Goellner for this episode is CA writer Matt D. Wilson for a conversations about the the keynote address delivered by Image Comics Publisher Eric Stephenson to the ComicsPro Retailer Conference in Atlanta. Stephenson made a characteristically iconoclastic and not altogether unassailable presentation, urging retailers to become community leaders, abandon their support of gimmicky, high-priced publishing practices, and draw a distinction between good and bad comics.
We’ll contrast Stephenson’s remarks with those of Dan DiDio, his counterpart at DC Comics, one of the stop superhero publishers, who in an interview this week confirmed plans to double— even triple-down — on weekly comics, crossovers and 3D covers, publishing strategies that are seemingly exactly the sort of thing Stephenson that criticized.
Image Comics Publisher Eric Stephenson took a shot across the bow at not just Marvel and DC in his address to the ComicsPRO retailers meeting in Atlanta Friday, but also Dark Horse, BOOM! Studios and other s, denouncing the practices of renumbering series, event comics, gimmick covers, licensed comics based on cartoons and films, and charging up to $7.99 for an issue.
For those of you unfamiliar with the deep inner workings of direct market distribution -- also known as "the business of comic book stores" -- ComicsPro is an influential trade organization of comic book retailers whose focus is to advocate for its members in matters of business, promotion and other concerns unique to those from whom most of us buy comics...
In stores this week is Black Beetle #2, the newest issue of Francesco Francavilla's miniseries starring the eponymous pulp inspired hero. Also this week is the ComicsPRO summit, where members of the comics retail trade organization gather to discuss how best to promote progress in the direct market...