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Friday, September 25, 2009 

Once, superhero movies did sell comics...

But things have certainly changed since then. The Norridge Harwood Heights News writes an interview with a local comics store owner, where he tells towards the end:
Stangeland acknowledged comic book sales of a title made into a movie is hit and miss.

"When the first 'Batman' movie came out, it was an incredible engine for selling comics," he said. "Everybody wanted 'Batman.' I probably sold five or six times as many Batman comics after the movie came out as before. The same thing happened to a lesser extent with the 'Spider-Man' movies. For some reason 'X-Men' didn't really translate into higher sales of the comic."
Now that I recall, no, it didn't. Around the time the first X-Movie came out, Marvel made two mistakes: they brought back Chris Claremont and even had him inject contrived elements into the series in order to "reflect" some of the elements in the movies. His writing style had certainly deteriorated by then, and the stories he turned out were almost incomprehensible. Then, when Grant Morrison took over, sales began to drop below 100,000 and have never recovered.

And even with Spider-Man comics, things have really changed over the years.

The salesman veers into sugarcoatedness at the end:
In terms of the economy, Stangeland believes things are getting better.

"Those first eight or nine months were pretty tough. You could tell people were being a lot more conservative in what they bought. ... there were a lot of people who came in who just bought maybe one book a week that they couldn't live without.

"In the last three months it feels like it's going back up," he continued. "It's not super strong but I do think it's getting better and I think the industry as a whole I believe is optimistic right now. More books are being published, there's still a lot of media exposure from the movies and so on."
But if recent sales statistics indicate, very few of these books are doing well, if at all. Even sales of graphic novels, now that I think of it, are very uncertain.

And there's another article where a comics store manager seems to be going out of his way to sugarcoat the real picture, in what might be a desperate attempt to boost overall sales again, without even discussing clearly why comics have lost ground in the past several years.

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  • I'm Avi Green
  • From Jerusalem, Israel
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