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Industry Rant

Old 05-05-19, 12:25 AM
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Re: Industry Rant

Originally Posted by Red Hood
Another big place that recently stopped selling floppies, eliminated their variants and downsized their tpb section is Books-A-Million. This happened at the end of 2018, taking another big customer from Diamond and affecting the industry overall.
They've started a new subsidiary called 2nd & Charles that specializes in used media/books and has a comic book section.
Old 05-05-19, 06:54 AM
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Re: Industry Rant

Originally Posted by PhantomStranger
They've started a new subsidiary called 2nd & Charles that specializes in used media/books and has a comic book section.
2nd and Charles has existed for a while, almost as long as Books a Million. Their comic book section consist of mostly back issues with some new releases and the Fried Pie Variants (until the stopped the agreement last year). My understanding is that 2nd and Charles and Books a Million (both under the same company) stopped getting new issues from Diamond late last year as corporate decided to cut on buying new floppies and collectibles from Diamond. So now, in the past 5 years, Diamond has lost Hastings (their biggest account), BAM/2nd and Charles and about 100 comic book stores.
Old 05-05-19, 11:24 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

I still see new issues at 2nd and Charles. I got Detective Comics #1000 from there and a couple of other issues just a couple weeks ago.
Old 08-21-19, 10:10 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

Two people from a FB group I'm in relayed some horror stories while shopping today at their LCS. The first one was in Florida and the guy(a regular) went to his LCS as soon as their doors open to get a copy of Batman 77. Well, before he went in to the store, another regular beat him to the wall of new books, grabbed every single copy of Batman 77 (around 50 copies) and proceeded to buy them and the store owner didn't do shit to stop him. Everyone else that went at that time to pick that particular book was extremely pissed that the owner allowed that guy to buy all the copies.

The second story is from a guy in the who went to his LCS first thing in the morning to pick up Power of X #3 that was released today. Well, all the regular copies of that book were marked at $15.99 (retail price is $4.99) and all the variants were priced between $25-$250. I understand pricing the 1:10, 1:25, etc, variants at a higher price, but why fuck with your customers by pricing the regular copies on released day for $16? And this is one of the reasons why LCS are dying.
Old 08-21-19, 11:32 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

^ Totally sucks. I stopped going to one store (Comic Madness in Chino, CA) because they jacked up the prices for all the New52 #1s as soon as they opened the doors. They said it was because of demand. I even complained about it here on the forum back in 2011 and a few weeks later, someone from Comic Madness responded! Fucking creepy!

Had no problem getting a copy today for my usual discounted price ($3.00). 1 per customer tho. And only for regulars.
Old 08-22-19, 04:23 AM
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Re: Industry Rant

Originally Posted by Red Hood
The second story is from a guy in the who went to his LCS first thing in the morning to pick up Power of X #3 that was released today. Well, all the regular copies of that book were marked at $15.99 (retail price is $4.99) and all the variants were priced between $25-$250. I understand pricing the 1:10, 1:25, etc, variants at a higher price, but why fuck with your customers by pricing the regular copies on released day for $16? And this is one of the reasons why LCS are dying.
I remember stuff like that pissing me off as a kid during the '90s. But wouldn't the newsstand solve this problem? At least when it comes to selling new issues at cover price? And yet, I think the newsstand for comics is completely gone now.

Originally Posted by The Valeyard
^ Totally sucks. I stopped going to one store (Comic Madness in Chino, CA) because they jacked up the prices for all the New52 #1s as soon as they opened the doors. They said it was because of demand. I even complained about it here on the forum back in 2011 and a few weeks later, someone from Comic Madness responded! Fucking creepy!

Had no problem getting a copy today for my usual discounted price ($3.00). 1 per customer tho. And only for regulars.
It takes out the fun out of buying comic books when shops are pulling shenanigans like this. I just want to read the damn book and the store owners are acting like some crooked 3-card monty dealer.
Old 08-22-19, 07:24 AM
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Re: Industry Rant

Shops doing that shit will go out of business. Fuck em.

My LCS had enough for all subs, and some left over for regulars who called ahead. And they never mark up books, they truly want their customers to get books. I am blessed to have 2 good shops in town, and the one that is my main one is amazing.

Last edited by stingermck; 08-22-19 at 07:32 AM.
Old 08-22-19, 09:08 AM
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Re: Industry Rant

Originally Posted by brayzie
I remember stuff like that pissing me off as a kid during the '90s. But wouldn't the newsstand solve this problem? At least when it comes to selling new issues at cover price? And yet, I think the newsstand for comics is completely gone now.



It takes out the fun out of buying comic books when shops are pulling shenanigans like this. I just want to read the damn book and the store owners are acting like some crooked 3-card monty dealer.
Newsstand wouldn't solve this problem. First guy in there would do the same as that one LCS and buy up all the copies of whatever hot book there was. Newsstand would solve the problem of getting non comic book fans to buy comics, but not this problem. You really need a good LCS owner who keeps an eye out for his regular customers.

I mean, I feel for the comic store owner. More often than not these events (and I have no idea what's the deal with that x-men comic) are kept secret until right before release, while he has to order comics like two months in advance. But they should at the very least know of and take care of their regular customers and limit the number one person can buy if there's scarcity. After a week, besides the ones who have a pull list go ahead and scalp the remainder for whatever you want.
Old 08-22-19, 01:08 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

Originally Posted by fujishig

I mean, I feel for the comic store owner. More often than not these events (and I have no idea what's the deal with that x-men comic) are kept secret until right before release, while he has to order comics like two months in advance. But they should at the very least know of and take care of their regular customers and limit the number one person can buy if there's scarcity. After a week, besides the ones who have a pull list go ahead and scalp the remainder for whatever you want.
That was the conversation today in my LCS. Sales are down on King Batman, so they had adjusted accordingly. Then DC (knowingly) pulls this stunt, leaving the store with nothing.
Old 08-22-19, 02:50 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

Originally Posted by fujishig
Newsstand wouldn't solve this problem. First guy in there would do the same as that one LCS and buy up all the copies of whatever hot book there was. Newsstand would solve the problem of getting non comic book fans to buy comics, but not this problem. You really need a good LCS owner who keeps an eye out for his regular customers.
No, I meant the problem of of some comic shops selling the latest issue at something higher than the cover price.

I mean, I feel for the comic store owner. More often than not these events (and I have no idea what's the deal with that x-men comic) are kept secret until right before release, while he has to order comics like two months in advance.
As a rule, I wouldn't think they should. If they tell the shops in advance, plot details will get leaked out ahead of time and ruin the surprise for readers.
But DC and Marvel don't seem to do it for those reasons, as certain "ground breaking" developments in Batman, Superman, etc end up getting leaked to major news publications, which potentially spoils the surprise for readers anyways.

But they should at the very least know of and take care of their regular customers and limit the number one person can buy if there's scarcity. After a week, besides the ones who have a pull list go ahead and scalp the remainder for whatever you want.
But this way of doing things is done because of the current market. Print media sales are going down, and comics sales have been declining before that. This is a niche hobby now. And who's paying for these marked up new issues? Isn't everything immediately collected in trade or available digitally?
Old 08-22-19, 03:01 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

Originally Posted by brayzie
No, I meant the problem of of some comic shops selling the latest issue at something higher than the cover price.


As a rule, I wouldn't think they should. If they tell the shops in advance, plot details will get leaked out ahead of time and ruin the surprise for readers.
But DC and Marvel don't seem to do it for those reasons, as certain "ground breaking" developments in Batman, Superman, etc end up getting leaked to major news publications, which potentially spoils the surprise for readers anyways.


But this way of doing things is done because of the current market. Print media sales are going down, and comics sales have been declining before that. This is a niche hobby now. And who's paying for these marked up new issues? Isn't everything immediately collected in trade or available digitally?
But someone would go buy up all the newsstand issues and comic shops would still scalp them (or at least these would). Heck, some of these comic shops would probably go to the newsstands and buy them up. When I was in college, the closest comic shop near me would basically make daily runs to TRU to pick up all the hot comic related toys to sell.

If they're going to try to keep things a surprise, you're right, they shouldn't leak them to the press AND they should allow people to reorder easily. Like have it ready to go.

As far as who's still buying them, well, that's kind of the point. The LCS should be catering to their fanbase and making them feel at least somewhat special and taken care of. Those are the bread and butter, not speculators coming in to buy up hot issues. The only way for an LCS to compete with InStockTrades and Amazon, or heck, DCBS is to offer some kind of service to their customers and not treat them like crap. Because I can attest, once you're off the monthly drip it's easy to just drop it all.
Old 08-22-19, 06:01 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

Originally Posted by fujishig
Newsstand wouldn't solve this problem. First guy in there would do the same as that one LCS and buy up all the copies of whatever hot book there was. Newsstand would solve the problem of getting non comic book fans to buy comics, but not this problem. You really need a good LCS owner who keeps an eye out for his regular customers.

I mean, I feel for the comic store owner. More often than not these events (and I have no idea what's the deal with that x-men comic) are kept secret until right before release, while he has to order comics like two months in advance. But they should at the very least know of and take care of their regular customers and limit the number one person can buy if there's scarcity. After a week, besides the ones who have a pull list go ahead and scalp the remainder for whatever you want.
Originally Posted by fujishig
But someone would go buy up all the newsstand issues and comic shops would still scalp them (or at least these would). Heck, some of these comic shops would probably go to the newsstands and buy them up. When I was in college, the closest comic shop near me would basically make daily runs to TRU to pick up all the hot comic related toys to sell.
Hmm, good point.
However, from what I remember of buying comics at Borders is that the newsstand received the latest issue much later than the comic shops. That would allow for the initial craze to die down somewhat, while giving regular readers a decent a chance to beat these scalpers to the punch. But apparently there people are not flocking to newsstands to buy comics. When DC did the New52, Barnes had an entire new section carved out for new comics...now nothing. It seems like there's only a modest spike in sales and interest when there's stunts like this to bring old readers/collectors out the woodwork.
I remember going to 7-11 to buy and read Whedon's Astonishing X-Men #1, then finding out the series had already been out for a year in the comic shops.

If they're going to try to keep things a surprise, you're right, they shouldn't leak them to the press AND they should allow people to reorder easily. Like have it ready to go.
Why don't they allow people to reorder easily? I remember Marvel and DC would occasionally do the 2nd and 3rd printing for sold out issues. Did they stop that practice?
At one point Joe Quesada back in the day limited the print runs and didn't allow for reprints but that was back in the early 2000s I think.

As far as who's still buying them, well, that's kind of the point. The LCS should be catering to their fanbase and making them feel at least somewhat special and taken care of. Those are the bread and butter, not speculators coming in to buy up hot issues. The only way for an LCS to compete with InStockTrades and Amazon, or heck, DCBS is to offer some kind of service to their customers and not treat them like crap.
I agree, but the comic shop model was just a bandaid for problem the comic industry was facing in the 70s. Comic sales were down, newsstand presence was diminishing, and comic shops and the direct market was the remedy for the time. But American comics have never had the sort of mainstream appeal that manga in Japan has had. If they did, we wouldn't have to rely on shady comic shops. Comic shops are like antique stores and second hand shops. They're dependent on nostalgia and used/"collectable" items: old toys, old video games, old comic books, old cards...with new merchandise comic issues on the wall. Then months later those unsold issues are piled into the dollar bins. The clerks and store owners are more like dealers.

Because I can attest, once you're off the monthly drip it's easy to just drop it all.
That happened to me. Not so much with the comic shops, as the ones in my area were pretty good. But the publishers themselves don't seem to treat their business as something mainstream and professional. Various writers and artists take anywhere from 6 months to multiple years in between issues. Editors and writers in forums being rude and condescending to even polite fans who were critical of storylines or practices. Rising prices, decreased page counts, and decompressed stories.
Not to mention Marvel and DC, the only two publishers with some decent presence, operate on a "work-for-hire" model. Writers and artists don't get to own their creations, so instead we get the same stories with the same characters every month, every year, every decade.

Old 08-22-19, 09:25 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

Originally Posted by fujishig

I mean, I feel for the comic store owner. More often than not these events (and I have no idea what's the deal with that x-men comic) are kept secret until right before release, while he has to order comics like two months in advance. But they should at the very least know of and take care of their regular customers and limit the number one person can buy if there's scarcity. After a week, besides the ones who have a pull list go ahead and scalp the remainder for whatever you want.
I understand not preparing for Batman #77 or Walking Dead #193 as there was no way of knowing but there's no reason for an LCS to not adjust numbers for the Power of X or House of X or Absolute Carnage books. The X books have been selling out everywhere and the have a final order cutoff date of 2 weeks in advance to make adjustments for issues #3 and forward. IF they didn't order to supply the demand by now is the LCS fault.

Still, I know of too many store owners who are just fucking morons that don't look at their emails, don't look at social media and don't have their finger on the pulse of the industry. And I know this from experience. I was the guy who stayed informed about these type of things at my own store. When I had a fallout with my business partners and left the store while my lawyer sort things out, the other bumbling idiots who ran the store were simply clueless and willfully ignorant. This happened around the time that the orders for DC's Dark Metal series and spin-off were about to happen. I had been in conference calls and the retailers social media groups and everytime I told my partners to join those meetings, they blew them off. Since I wasn't there anymore, these idiots only ordered 5 copies of Dark Metal #1, 3 copies of Teen Titans #12 (first appearance of the Batman Who Laughs, the main villain for the Dark Metal series) and less than 5 copies of each spinoff. The orders came in and they sold out as soon as they opened the doors and had no way of getting more issues as they were sold out completely at Diamond. These idiots left a lot of money on the table because of their willful ignorance and this happens too often with these LCS people. I've noticed that for some weird reason, many if not most LCS owners and employees are lazy as fuck. They think the product will sell itself and don't do the work to make things successful. Many of them don't have a business background or business acumen in general, so that's why they don't last long.

Originally Posted by stingermck
That was the conversation today in my LCS. Sales are down on King Batman, so they had adjusted accordingly. Then DC (knowingly) pulls this stunt, leaving the store with nothing.
Sales are down for Batman after issue #50 and then the whole Nightmares storyline brought sales down even further, and after issue #75 didn't do much at stores, many LCS have adjusted to only ordering for pull list customers and having enough extras to last them a week at most. DC had no issue spoiling issue #50, so I don't understand why they didn't say something to LCS about issue #77. I mean, they don't have to spoil the content or the big surprise at the end, but sending a mass email to LCS telling them that something big is happening in that issue would have been enough for everyone to adjust their orders and have enough issues to sell.


Old 08-23-19, 04:53 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

I think many readers tired of King's take on Batman and the aftermath of the wedding has gone nowhere. I'm surprised DC didn't pull him earlier from the book.
Old 11-15-19, 04:48 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

Fuck Local Comic stores. I was going to one for years, and they would forget to hold the books on my list & wouldn't give me that much of a discount - even though I spent a shit-load of money there.

I haven't collected floppies (individual comics) for 5 years, so have no use for these places anymore & haven't stepped into one since then - good riddance. I buy everything online, and get better deals than I ever did buying at LCS's. Plus, it's a lot more convenient to get these items delivered to my door than to drive half-way across town to pick this shit up once every several weeks (or more often, depending on how much I ordered).

Also, when I went to these places years ago, I remember how they would charge an exorbitant amount for old floppies that were in crummy shape. One time back in the 200X's, I went over to the LCS owner, pointed to an old floppy (in shitty shape) that he was charging $100 for - and said something like, "Why would I pay $100 for this piece of shit, when I can get this same issue in a Marvel Masterwork (and pointed to that) with 9 other issues, the color remastered, better quality paper, in a HC volume - for half the price? (This is when they were charging $50 for MMW's with 10 issues). That fucker didn't say anything, but he became enraged - his face turned beet red & I thought he was going to blow a gasket. I just walked out of the store, laughing Asshole. He can take all of his overpriced, old floppies and stick them where the sun don't shine.

Going along with this, I also have bad memories of these pricks charging exorbitant prices for newer comics that were considered "rare". The most blatant example I can think of were the variant covers (hologram, cardboard, etc.) from Marvel's re-booted X-men & Spider-man titles back in the '90's - utter garbage. Glad I never got on board that band-wagon, since these are borderline-worthless today - and are only good for use as toilet paper or to line the bottom of a bird-cage/kitty litter box.

Originally Posted by PhantomStranger
That's been happening for decades. I've seen greedy shops hold back "hot" issues they under-ordered and then jack the price up beyond cover.
Fuck those assholes that do that too. These days, all floppies are almost always collected in a Trade, so if all you want is to read the comic - just Trade wait.

Last edited by TheDude; 11-15-20 at 08:03 AM.
Old 11-15-19, 10:31 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

Any chance the problem isnít local stores, but your shitty store?

i kid, you seem reasonable and well-adjusted.
Old 11-16-19, 10:57 AM
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Re: Industry Rant

Old 11-17-19, 01:26 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

Originally Posted by majorjoe23
Any chance the problem isnít local stores, but your shitty store?
You sound like a shill for Local Comic stores. Keep up the good work! I'm sure you'll be able to bring back all of the customers that these stores have lost due to their poor customer service - LMFAO!!!

Glad that these stores are having problems. Years of gouging & ripping off customers with inflated prices (especially for newer issues), buying up all copies and selling them for a huge profit, etc. are finally biting these LCS's in the ass. I also remember back in the '90's & 200X's, some of the stores would go to local toy stores & buy HTF toys, then turn around & sell them for twice the retail cost. Pricks. What goes around comes around, motherfuckers

Originally Posted by B5Erik
The whole industry has been mismanaged for over 30 years (there's plenty of blame to go around). If not for the huge success of these movies Marvel and DC would have gone out of business years ago, taking most comic stores with them (some could have survived as back issue outlets, but probably not a large percentage).
Agreed.

Last edited by TheDude; 11-17-19 at 01:32 PM.
Old 11-17-19, 09:01 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

I usually get my trades from the library for free. I also use Comixology if I need to get something quick. Hoopla also has comics. Fuck the stores.
Old 11-22-19, 12:53 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

I have a number of comic shops in my area. Most, if not all of them are great. I love being able to flip through different issues on the shelf and seeing what's new. I like the atmosphere and how the shops still have trading cards available, posters, toys, etc.

Most of my bad experiences with comic shops was back in the 90s.
Old 11-22-19, 01:19 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

Some local comic shops are good, some are bad.

But keep this in mind: for many owners it's a passion project... I don't think anyone ever set out to get rich owning a comic book store without at least being a tangential fan of comic books. Sometimes they have or can develop the business acumen needed to make one successful, and leave the fanboy behind, but sometimes they can't.

I do not envy shop owners. Three months before anything is released they have to look through Previews (and other catalogs) and use the little information there to try to determine how many comics to order. Comics are expensive but there are razor thin margins on them, you can easily lose money if you don't sell like 75% of your copies, and back issues will just sit there as dead weight 99% of the time. You have to try to predict demand. And when companies reboot with a new number one, you have to estimate what demand and sales would be. You can't just order a bunch of issues and have enough left for someone off the street to look at. Sometimes you order 1 copy only because there's one guy who has it on their pull list, and if that guy disappears you're stuck. If the comic companies do something to tick off the customers you're stuck. If Hickman decides that he wants to end Walking Dead on a whim, you're stuck, and there goes one of your consistent moneymakers.

I hated the practice of scalping toys from the local toy stores, but if you buy toys from Diamond you'll get them late, and like all toy stores you'll be stuck with all the unwanted pegwarmers. People are going all digital or pirating and it's taking away business. Everything is collected in trades now and amazon undercuts everyone. DCBS undercuts everyone because of volume, and customers expect to have the same discount ,which you can't give unless you want to go under even faster.

I don't even think a comics-only shop is viable in this day and age (though it really depends on the area). That's why so many are trading card dependent, and I'm sure that's where they make a lot of their money.

It's still your choice how to get your comics. I don't see how it helps to go to someone and say "why should I buy this original copy of something when I can just read the reprint." Unless I"m missing the context here and he screwed you, why even do that?
Old 11-22-19, 10:58 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

Generally I've had good times at most of the comic book stores I've visited. There's always been a few cases where things happen that upset me, but they are the exception and not the rule.

I was saddened to learn a local shop I had been visiting since the 1980s recently closed. The owners, a nice couple, were getting up there in age and the entire area is getting re-developed for new high-rises.
Old 11-26-19, 07:19 PM
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Re: Industry Rant

Originally Posted by fujishig
I hated the practice of scalping toys from the local toy stores, but if you buy toys from Diamond you'll get them late, and like all toy stores you'll be stuck with all the unwanted pegwarmers.
You sound like you're trying to justify scalping these toys & charging twice the retail cost. Fuck that, and fuck the LCS owners who did/do that shit.

Originally Posted by fujishig
It's still your choice how to get your comics. I don't see how it helps to go to someone and say "why should I buy this original copy of something when I can just read the reprint." Unless I"m missing the context here and he screwed you, why even do that?
The guy was a douche-bag who had been ripping off collectors/comic fans for years. Screw him. I enjoyed pissing him off, and never walked back into that fucking store

Originally Posted by brayzie
It takes out the fun out of buying comic books when shops are pulling shenanigans like this. I just want to read the damn book and the store owners are acting like some crooked 3-card monty dealer.
Agreed.

Last edited by TheDude; 11-27-19 at 04:58 PM.
Old 07-11-21, 08:02 AM
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Re: Industry Rant

I have 0 tolerance and patience for this type of shit. If you are too lazy to re-price your back issues to reflect the current market, then don’t take it on the customer by doing bait and switch type of shit like this



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Old 07-11-21, 11:19 AM
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Re: Industry Rant

Originally Posted by TheDude
Glad that these stores are having problems. Years of gouging & ripping off customers with inflated prices (especially for newer issues), buying up all copies and selling them for a huge profit, etc. are finally biting these LCS's in the ass.
I remember some comic book stores were doing this at a smaller scale back in the early/mid-1980s.

Unless you purchased it the first week or two at 60 (or 65) cents cover price, the then-current/recent issues of The Uncanny X-Men automatically spiked up to $2 in the back issues inventory.

In contrast at some newstands which carried comic books, the same then-current issues were cover price for over a month.

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