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Saturday, November 22, 2014 

British comics readers tilt to the left

According to a recent UK survey:
The stereotype of comic books readers being male holds out here, as is being a bit lefty (despite reading many right wing fantasies) but it has always been assumed that fans are relatively wealthy, having plenty of disposable income to spend on their hobby. That does not appear to be born out. Maybe more publishers should be warned off increasing their prince points to $4.99 before something breaks...
Alas, they won't. I've heard that DC may be moving towards the 5 dollar mark soon, and Marvel is guaranteed to do the same. Even if it's not motivated by rising costs of printing pamphlets, they sure do love milking people dry by getting them to buy awful products that won't be worth anything in the coming decades.

That a lot of UK readers are leftist doesn't particularly surprise me. Come to think of it, neither does the majority's being male. This is a pretty different location than the USA, where marketing to the female audience is less certain. But, it does rather surprise me many UK readers would be willing to read superhero stories - American or otherwise - that could feature what Bleeding Cool calls "right wing fantasies", even though that's been all but pushed out of the mainstream for a long time. I suppose it owes to how so many writers, especially coming from Britain, are left-wing themselves (Millar, Morrison, Ellis, Ennis) so the British readers of liberal background are prompted to read them.

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The comic book medium is dominated by the superhero genre, which is inherently an adolescent male power fantasy. So it is not surprising that a lot of British fans, like their American counterparts, are boys and young men.

Also, a lot of people tend to lean left, politically, in adolescence. When these kids get older, graduate from school, and gain some experience in the real world (working, paying bills, paying taxes) their politics may start to drift right. (They won't necessarily become Margaret Thatcher Conservatives or Reagan Republicans, but they may become moderate centrists.)

And, as they get older, most of them will probably lose interest in both superheroes and comic books.

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