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Support comics in their monthly format & support Criminal!

Old 01-21-07, 12:44 PM
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Support comics in their monthly format & support Criminal!

I know this is a lost cause here, & I have been the only comic book fan here to criticize the TPB format, but one thing we can all agree on is that we all love comic books. However, truly quality comics will cease to exist if everyone keeps on waiting for the trades instead of picking up the monthlies.

Criminal is one of the most mind-blowing comics being published today, & I don't think I've seen a single person on this board post that they have picked up a single issue yet. On top of how brilliant the comic is, we are all also movie lovers here & each issue contains a phenomenal 2 page spread of the amazing Sean Phillips doing his rendition of one of the creators favorite film-noirs & then a 2 page essay from Brubaker or a guest writer on that film. How fuckin' cool & original is that for a monthly comic, there are so few comics nowadays were creators take the time to load the monthlies with extras & letter columns. And this is the type of stuff that needs to be supported & will NOT be collected in trade format.

Here it is from Ed Brubaker himself, on the upcoming Criminal TPB:

"Please don't stop buying the singles. The trade will have no extras, not even the covers to the issues. It's just the story, none of the back-ups or the articles with Sean's illustrations, etc. Our sales are decent so far to stick around, but we can't afford to have our supporters jumping off once they see a trade appear."

I know everyone here keeps using the money excuse but surely, a few extra bucks here & there are not going to make anyone in this forum become homeless. I totally get waiting for trades on books like X-men, Batman, etc, but the truly great comics & even greater creators NEED to be supported in their monthly format. There have been SOOOO many posts here where I've talked about a great new series, & then someone says, they will just wait for the trade to try it. As a lifelong comic book geek, that just makes me so sad to hear.

How does something as awesome as this, NOT want to make you run out & buy the monthly comic:







READ THE FIRST ISSUE HERE & THEN RUN OUT & BUY THE REST:

http://www.marvel.com/digitalcomics/view.htm?iid=1189

Last edited by Sessa17; 01-21-07 at 03:34 PM.
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Old 01-21-07, 04:58 PM
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I've been meaning to pick up an issue. Does this run on arcs, one-shot stories, or am I going to have to catch up?
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Old 01-21-07, 05:42 PM
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Read the first issue, but I'm waiting for the trade.
I think everyone should wait for the trade too.

These comic publishers need to wake up and adjust the way the release a product, mothlys and floppies aren't cutting it anymore, and I think it's a big reason why the comic industry is in such poor shape.

Take criminal for example. According to you I am supposed to go to the comic store six times in six months to buy a 3 dollar comic, so that I can get a small part of the story each time. Filled with ad's no less. And on top of that I don't even know if the story will end up being a good read. It may be a waste of time and money. And if I don't do this the book gets cancelled and puppies die. Fuck that.

But if I wait for the trade I get to read it in one sitting, I also get to wait for the reviews to see if it's worth picking up, no ads and probably cheaper then buying the singles.

And criminal is also being published by marvel and if I were to actually buy into the "support singles or a comic dies" philosophy I would do it for a book that actually needs it, like teenagers from mars or true story swear to god, not from the writer of xmen and artist of marvel zombies.
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Old 01-21-07, 06:30 PM
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Originally Posted by lukewarmwater
These comic publishers need to wake up and adjust the way the release a product, mothlys and floppies aren't cutting it anymore, and I think it's a big reason why the comic industry is in such poor shape.
Monthlies aren't cutting it anymore why? Simply b/c you don't like them. Sales of monthlies are the highest they've been in over 15 years.

Take criminal for example. According to you I am supposed to go to the comic store six times in six months to buy a 3 dollar comic, so that I can get a small part of the story each time.
Most stores offer subscription services that make buying the monthly cheaper (since you are so money tight) than the trade that you claim you save so much money on. And I would assume most people aren't going to the store 6 times in 6 months for just criminal. It's likely you'd be picking up other stuff.

Filled with ad's no less.
Yeah, it's such a hassle to simply flip the page or not look at the add. God forbid you pull a mussle. You've probably achieved many of your life-long goals with the time you've saved reading trades that don't take hourse upon hours to turn a page with an ad on it.

But if I wait for the trade I get to read it in one sitting, I also get to wait for the reviews to see if it's worth picking up, no ads and probably cheaper then buying the singles.
There are plenty of reviews for single issues, they are the same people that review the trades. If reviews mean so much to you, there were tons of reviews out raving about Criminal before the first issue hit the stands, as there are for most critically acclaimed comics.

[And criminal is also being published by marvel and if I were to actually buy into the "support singles or a comic dies" philosophy I would do it for a book that actually needs it, like teenagers from mars or true story swear to god, not from the writer of xmen and artist of marvel zombies.
This makes absolutely no sense. Just b/c a book is published by Marvel doesn't mean it needs support to succeed. Hell, I gave you a quote from the writer itself saying the book needs support in the monthly format to survive. And what does a major company have to do with the content of the book. True Story Swear to God is published by Image, they aren't exactly hurting for money. You knock Criminal for it being by guys who do mainstream work, yet it is offereing more unique content than pretty much any comic out there.

And it's a shame you haven't read anything from Brubaker. He is just writing 1 arc on X-men. The guy is responsible for some of the most innovative comics of the past 25 years with Sleeper, & Point Blank, Gotham Central has completly revolutionized Captain America into a noir-influenced adult series & is doing things on Daredevil that are amazing. And Sean Phillips, I don't even know where to begin with his non-mainstream brilliance. Hellblazer, The Invisibles, Sleeper again. For someone that loves trades so much, you are missing out on some great ones.
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Old 01-21-07, 07:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Sessa17
Monthlies aren't cutting it anymore why? Simply b/c you don't like them.
No, a lot of people I talk to feel the same way. And none of your arguments support the claim that monthlys are better, just that if I'm concerened about money or time, there are ways to make single issues easier, but still not better.

Originally Posted by Sessa17
Sales of monthlies are the highest they've been in over 15 years.
Are you kidding me?

Originally Posted by Sessa17
Most stores offer subscription services that make buying the monthly cheaper (since you are so money tight) than the trade that you claim you save so much money on.
Yes, but why would I want to sign up for a subscription, rather then just purchase the trade? Heck most stores offer a discount on trades too.

Originally Posted by Sessa17
And I would assume most people aren't going to the store 6 times in 6 months for just criminal. It's likely you'd be picking up other stuff.
Yeah, but it's still a 6-month commitment. If you miss a month or week there's a chance you might not get it, but again if you wait for the trade, you get the entire story.

Originally Posted by Sessa17
Yeah, it's such a hassle to simply flip the page or not look at the ad. God forbid you pull a mussle. You've probably achieved many of your life-long goals with the time you've saved reading trades that don't take hourse upon hours to turn a page with an ad on it.
This is such an odd argument your making. Your saying I don't like ad's because of the physical exhaustion of flipping the page? Do you by any chance work in advertising?

Originally Posted by Sessa17
There are plenty of reviews for single issues, they are the same people that review the trades. If reviews mean so much to you, there were tons of reviews out raving about Criminal before the first issue hit the stands, as there are for most critically acclaimed comics.
Right, but they've only reviewed the first part of a story. A lot of comics I've read have started out well and turned into shit.

Originally Posted by Sessa17
This makes absolutely no sense. Just b/c a book is published by Marvel doesn't mean it needs support to succeed. Hell, I gave you a quote from the writer itself saying the book needs support in the monthly format to survive.
Then they shouldn't be writing for the trade. Each issue is part of a 6 issue arc and if they wanted to tell one long crime story they should have just relased that. Independent creators and companys release graphic novels all the time without a 6 issue lead in, there is no reason they can't do the same.

Originally Posted by Sessa17
And it's a shame you haven't read anything from Brubaker. He is just writing 1 arc on X-men. The guy is responsible for some of the most innovative comics of the past 25 years with Sleeper, & Point Blank, Gotham Central has completly revolutionized Captain America into a noir-influenced adult series & is doing things on Daredevil that are amazing. And Sean Phillips, I don't even know where to begin with his non-mainstream brilliance. Hellblazer, The Invisibles, Sleeper again. For someone that loves trades so much, you are missing out on some great ones.
Brubaker didn't write the invisibles or hellblazer. But I have read gotham central, sleeper, catwoman, scene of the crime, a complete lowlife and daredevil by brubaker, but again I waited for the trade for all of those.

Just curious how old are you sessa17?
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Old 01-21-07, 07:55 PM
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I buy the monthlies because I like the weekly visit to the LCS. I like staying current with what's going on in the comic scene, as well as other pop cultural diversions.

Also, I like being able to open the comic book all the way. With TPBs, it's not as easy to do so, and not crease the bind to hell. I feel the same way about the prestige format books, also not easy to open it up all the way. The ads don't usually bother me, though Marvel has been approaching Cosmo-level in the ads per comic page ratio.

As a monthly comic book buyer, I'm supporting the industry's first run offering, and there's no guarentee all titles I'm interested in will also come out in TPB.

If enough people like me quit buying monthlies, there would be far less TPB offerings, and no one benefits from that scenario, no matter how 'convenient' that would be for people who are TPB-only.

Also, LCSs could not be sustained by TPBs only, and the industry doesn't improve with the number of LCSs contracting in a TPB-only world.

Also, there's nothing like being in the midst of reading something really good, or becomes an instant classic. With TPBs, you're simply late to the party from a pop cultural perspective.

As a life-long comic book buyer, it's somewhat of a lifestyle with the weekly trips, so I know myself enough to know that the TPB-only route would not be what I needed out of the hobby in the long run.
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Old 01-21-07, 08:05 PM
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For better or for worse, when I try a new series, its in trade form. For me staring a new series is easier in trade, then slow monthly format. A new series, with a slow build, will make me drop it in a heart beat. If I like a series after a trade or two, I will start getting singles then.

And if a trade has less material than singles, then thats just silly on Marvels part. I guess they need the extra paper to print some more civil war tie-ins.

Also I prefer my comics to have tights
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Old 01-21-07, 08:16 PM
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That's the first good argument I've heard. Seriously good job.

Originally Posted by Patman
I buy the monthlies because I like the weekly visit to the LCS. I like staying current with what's going on in the comic scene, as well as other pop cultural diversions.
That's a good point, but I also like going to the bookstore to get trades so I can also check out the books/magazines/dvds, etc.

Originally Posted by Patman
Also, I like being able to open the comic book all the way. With TPBs, it's not as easy to do so, and not crease the bind to hell. I feel the same way about the prestige format books, also not easy to open it up all the way.
I agree with you issue about the binding on some graphic novels, arkham asylum being one, but for the most part publishers do a good job of adjusting the artwork.

Originally Posted by Patman
The ads don't usually bother me, though Marvel has been approaching Cosmo-level in the ads per comic page ratio.
See they usually dont, but if I'm really into a story and suddenly tobbaco is wacko if your a teen is the next page it tends to take me out. Same with commercials during t.v. shows. If they put the ads in the back of the book I wouldn't mind so much.

Originally Posted by Patman
As a monthly comic book buyer, I'm supporting the industry's first run offering, and there's no guarentee all titles I'm interested in will also come out in TPB.

If enough people like me quit buying monthlies, there would be far less TPB offerings, and no one benefits from that scenario, no matter how 'convenient' that would be for people who are TPB-only.
But haven't bookstores shown that theres a market for graphic novels? and doesn't that work for manga? I mean look at the sales numbers for blankets or any manga that came out in the past year.

And I remember a few years ago comic publishers saying girls would never read comics and then manga pops up and takes the market, so who knows.

Originally Posted by Patman
Also, LCSs could not be sustained by TPBs only, and the industry doesn't improve with the number of LCSs contracting in a TPB-only world.
And again I'm more of a bookstore then lcs guy, but I think that's a problem with the way they market trades currently. It's pretty much once the six issues are done, they release the trade and then we never hear about it again. And it's rare that I ever see a press release about a comic making it's way to the trade. I've usually got to search amazon's website to find out if something came to the trade, yet whenever I go to my lcs or check out a comic website I'm hammered with informatin about civil war or 52.

Originally Posted by Patman
Also, there's nothing like being in the midst of reading something really good, or becomes an instant classic. With TPBs, you're simply late to the party from a pop cultural perspective.
Never bothered me personally.

Originally Posted by Patman
As a life-long comic book buyer, it's somewhat of a lifestyle with the weekly trips, so I know myself enough to know that the TPB-only route would not be what I needed out of the hobby in the long run.
See I've always been interested in comics as a story medium. With books, movies, dvds, etc. And the trade format fits in perfectly with that.
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Old 01-21-07, 08:34 PM
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I don't think the comic industry would make it as TPB-only because the direct market and non-returnable comics make it possible for the comic publishers to sustain publishing, while the bookstore approach would saddle the publishers with returnable product, and the price of TPBs would go up to fill in the gap between print-to-order and print-and-hope an audience shows and bookstores don't return a certain high percentage of them later.
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Old 01-21-07, 10:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Patman
I don't think the comic industry would make it as TPB-only because the direct market and non-returnable comics make it possible for the comic publishers to sustain publishing, while the bookstore approach would saddle the publishers with returnable product, and the price of TPBs would go up to fill in the gap between print-to-order and print-and-hope an audience shows and bookstores don't return a certain high percentage of them later.
But that's been the business model for most industries and even a few comic publishers. Video games specificially. Which is why most video game stores offer preorders, so they don't under/over ship.

But I can buy the argument, that until comics and graphic novels have a more prominent place in bookstores or until they reach other markets, grocery stores, gas stations, retail stores, etc, that switching to a trade only market would be suicide.

Although right now I don't see any of the publishers making any effort to broden their audience at all. They all seem comfrotable with the place they are at now, selling to the same comic fans who have been buying the same books month after month, year after year.

I've also wondering why none of the publishers have an online store, if they did they could handle a lot of the book stores returns and a much better way of marketing, say I dunno criminal to, say someone who buys x-men.
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Old 01-22-07, 08:41 AM
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I'm doing my part. I've had Criminal on the monthly pull list since issue #1.
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Old 01-22-07, 09:20 AM
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I understand the argument that comics need single issue sales to survive, but I am also sure that publishers would find ways to adapt to a changing market.

Is it just me, or has inflation/growth outpaced the industry?

Back when I was a kid, for a small part of my allowance and lawn mowing money, I felt as if I could keep up with the entire industry. But now, it seems as if it would take more than my disposable income to keep up.

Doing some quick googling, it appears that comics have increased in price many times what they should have with inflation. Even going back just to 1986, when comics were 75 cents, they "should" be less than $1.75, instead of the $3 they are now.

Because of this percentage of my income cost increase, I choose to no longer buy monthlies. Space and other hobbies are also part of my decision, and I would prefer for it to be 1974 with me buying most of Marvel and DC's output, but for now, it has to be trades only.
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Old 01-22-07, 09:39 AM
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I think we all support comics in our own way, but depending on who you ask, no one does enough. We need to support the LCS and stop buying online. We need to support the lower selling comics. We need to support the indie guys. I'm trying to get my foot in the door and start making comics, so believe me, I understand these needs, but I need to draw the line somewhere or I'll be buying comics I don't like, in a format I don't want, at a store that charges more.

But here's a question for my fellow DVDtalk comic fans. Let's say I'm at the comic shop. Which would "support" the industry more: buying an issue of Criminal, buying a comic published by a small publisher like Viper Comics, buying an original graphic novel by a small time creator, or buying a tradepaperback collection from Marvel?

I'm not going to share my answer until I hear some of your thoughts, but I will give you a hint...it's a trick question.
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Old 01-22-07, 09:59 AM
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Originally Posted by bishop2knight
But here's a question for my fellow DVDtalk comic fans. Let's say I'm at the comic shop. Which would "support" the industry more: buying an issue of Criminal, buying a comic published by a small publisher like Viper Comics, buying an original graphic novel by a small time creator, or buying a tradepaperback collection from Marvel?

I'm not going to share my answer until I hear some of your thoughts, but I will give you a hint...it's a trick question.
Buying from Marvel/DC. As long as the big guns stay big, they are still in public eye, and can license their characters to other media, such as movies, TV, games, etc. Itís the revenue from other media that will keep comics afloat, the characters in the public eye, and floppies in our hands every month.
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Old 01-22-07, 03:32 PM
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As far as the manga argument...

It's really not a fair assessment, because manga can "afford" to be cheaper because:
a) it's in black and white
b) it's mostly content that has already been released in it's primary market. So the original artist, publisher, etc. has already for the most part been paid, and this is just a licensing agreement for a (translated) reprint.

Now much can be said about the different tactics used by Japanese and American comic book publishers, but you can't really compare domestic manga releases with existing American comic books going trade-only, even if I'm a trade-only leaning type of consumer. The comics industry, for better or worse, still relies on the monthly issue, and the ads, exposure, etc. that come with it. If there's a series I like that's in danger of going under, I'll support the monthlies (for the most part, those on-the-bubble kinda series don't get a collection anyway).
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Old 01-22-07, 04:44 PM
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Originally Posted by lukewarmwater
No, a lot of people I talk to feel the same way. And none of your arguments support the claim that monthlys are better, just that if I'm concerened about money or time, there are ways to make single issues easier, but still not better.
My argument doesn't support that monthlies are better b/c that isn't my debate, I never said they are better. My entire post is that quality comics, need to be supported in their monthly format to succeed, they will not succeed if everyone just waits for the trade, you have the creators themselves saying this. . Especially those rare monthlies that offer you extras that the trades don't have, for me they really deserve extra support. And I've never once said trades are bad, I LOVE trades, there are books that I only read in trade format, & you can't beat a good trade for plain flights & long trips. But I want to support the books that I feel need to be. Also you keep going on about saving money, in today's world it is very easy to just buy monthlies, read them enjoy them, support them, & then put your run on ebay & get your money back. I do it all the time.

This is such an odd argument your making. Your saying I don't like ad's because of the physical exhaustion of flipping the page?
It's sarcasm, I thought it was pretty obvious. Your whining about trades being better b/c monthlies have so many ads, I just don't see what the big deal is or what that has to do with the quality of the content. Just flip the page if you don't want to see the ad.

Right, but they've only reviewed the first part of a story. A lot of comics I've read have started out well and turned into shit.
A review of a trade is only reviewing one part of a story as well. The first trade can be great & then turn to crap after that. Plus, I know I'm weird, I usually form my own opinion, I don't rely on reviewers to tell me what to buy & what is good. I have my creators I like, I usually know the quality they represent, & I want to suppport them & check out their books.

Then they shouldn't be writing for the trade. Each issue is part of a 6 issue arc and if they wanted to tell one long crime story they should have just relased that. Independent creators and companys release graphic novels all the time without a 6 issue lead in, there is no reason they can't do the same.
Not every comic is written in 6 issue arcs & TONS of indie creators do write in arcs formatted just for trade so I don't see what your point is.


Brubaker didn't write the invisibles or hellblazer
Did you read my post? Where did I say he did? I said Sean Phillips did amazing art for both series, you seem to be criticizing the guy just b/c he did mainstream work, I was pointing out that he did otherwise.

Just curious how old are you sessa17?
Almost 24, but I don't see what that has to do with anything.

Last edited by Sessa17; 01-22-07 at 04:47 PM.
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Old 01-22-07, 05:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Patman
I buy the monthlies because I like the weekly visit to the LCS. I like staying current with what's going on in the comic scene, as well as other pop cultural diversions.

As a life-long comic book buyer, it's somewhat of a lifestyle with the weekly trips, so I know myself enough to know that the TPB-only route would not be what I needed out of the hobby in the long run.
For me personally this is my biggest reason to always buy monthlies. I don't look at going to the comic book shop every week as a hassle like some people & I make good money (granted I get my books very cheap, but I buy so much, my weekly bill is still gigantic) but I don't mind spending my money on something I love. For me hitting being at a comic book store is fun, yeah I post at this forum, but I need to be around my fellow geeks & talk the geeky stuff I can't talk about with my annoying girlfriend.

Originally Posted by bishop2knight
But here's a question for my fellow DVDtalk comic fans. Let's say I'm at the comic shop. Which would "support" the industry more: buying an issue of Criminal, buying a comic published by a small publisher like Viper Comics, buying an original graphic novel by a small time creator, or buying a tradepaperback collection from Marvel?
For the sake of this thread, my point isn't "which supports the industry more". I'm just talking about supporting specific comic books. B2K, I know for sure your with my on the genius of Bru. It doesn't strike you when a creator you dig urges people to not wait for a trade, & that his book needs to be supported in the monthly format? And as a comic book fan, you don't enjoy when creators who not only do amazing work like Brubaker, but put awesome extras like his pieces on film-noir into their monthly comic? And it's not just Brubaker, Peter David has written tons of articles on how truly good & unique comics have to be supported monthly & not by people just waiting for the trade. Waid, Ellis, & Busiek & many others have all written things along the same lines.
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Old 01-22-07, 08:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Sessa17
For the sake of this thread, my point isn't "which supports the industry more". I'm just talking about supporting specific comic books. B2K, I know for sure your with my on the genius of Bru. It doesn't strike you when a creator you dig urges people to not wait for a trade, & that his book needs to be supported in the monthly format? And as a comic book fan, you don't enjoy when creators who not only do amazing work like Brubaker, but put awesome extras like his pieces on film-noir into their monthly comic? And it's not just Brubaker, Peter David has written tons of articles on how truly good & unique comics have to be supported monthly & not by people just waiting for the trade. Waid, Ellis, & Busiek & many others have all written things along the same lines.
Yeah, you know I dig Brubaker, m'man. And I'll be completely honest with you...until I read this thread, I didn't know Bru was making a call for more support. Hell, I didn't even know that there were that many extras in each issue or that he's not including any of that in the trade. And I agree that some comics work better as monthlies. They have great cliffhangers. Vaughan is a master at that.

As I've said, monthlies are still not my favored format, but I'll go out and check out Criminal next time I'm at the shop...see what it's all about.
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Old 01-22-07, 08:39 PM
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I only get to read my books a few times a year, so I can usually read an entire story line in one sitting. I still buy many, many comics a month. However, the comic book companies are killing themselves with regard to TPB. Take Astonishing X-Men. I considered buying it off the rack, but I knew that 1. Wheadon would only be on the book a year or two at best, 2. being an "event" he would only write complete stories with no fill ins, and 3. being a "guest" writer of sorts, the book would inevitably have some delays. So I wait for the TPB, Marvel gets their money, I get the story. The same thing is happening on Wonder Woman right now. The same thing happened when Kevin Smith was on Green Lantern and Daredevil.
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Old 01-22-07, 08:49 PM
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i've bought every issue of criminal thus far (i think 3, with the 4th due any day), and haven't read one of them - i usually read comics in "chunks" and i've been slammed with work. but based on brubaker's previous work, i couldn't pass up criminal. you never know what will come out in TPB (for sure), and pricing is hit or miss - sometimes the TPB offer a discount over the singles, sometimes they don't (the new Punisher War Journal HC is 4 issues for $20).
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Old 01-22-07, 09:04 PM
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I verrrry seldom buy the monthlies, though I go to the comic shop fairly often (at least a couple times per month or more). I buy the HCs or TPBs of books I like.
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Old 01-22-07, 10:11 PM
  #22  
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Reading it quickly, I thought the thread title said "Support comics in their monthly format and support criminals!"...
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Old 01-23-07, 03:33 AM
  #23  
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I'm mainly a trade guy, but I think Brubaker has the right idea by adding supplemental material in the monthy comic instead of the trade. It doesn't upset me that if I buy the trade I'll only be getting the story, but maybe that extra material will arouse the interest of someone who is on the fence about buying the single issues. Kirkman seems to do the same thing with his books.

I think it's great that people buy the monthlies and I hope more and more people continue to do it. It would be terrible if the industry went all trade. Why? X-men and Batman would get bi-yearly trades sure, but I doubt stuff like Walking Dead or Hack-Slash would make it. I love me some Bats, but I don't want to see just that.

The funny thing is I think Brubaker's stuff does read better in trades. Especially his crime stuff. That's because his writing is so intricate that it's easy for someone like me to get things mixed up between the issues. Happened with Gotham Central for me. His Captain America reads great in single issues though.
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Old 02-12-07, 11:09 AM
  #24  
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Well, the OP will be happy to know that I picked up all 4 current issues at my LCS yesterday.
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Old 02-12-07, 12:56 PM
  #25  
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I picked up all 4 issues of Criminal the day they came out. Ed Brubaker is one of my top 5 fav writers right now and just about anything he does these days(Uncanny X-Men excepted) is nothing short of amazing. I can't wait to see how the first storyarc finishes up in Criminal, but I'm sure it won't disappoint.

On the topic of buying comics on a weekly basis, I will say that about 95% of what I buy are the regular single issues. The only titles I buy in trade format are 100 Bullets, Fables, and Powers. I buy them in trade format because they are so story-driven that I lose track of what happens after even a month goes by waiting for the next issue to come out.
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