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Wednesday, July 20, 2016 

How can they dominate if books have become secondary to movies?

In this recent CNBC article, they say Marvel's dominating sales, as if this were something new, when it hasn't been for a long time, and isn't particularly surprising even now. All without any critique of their publicity stunts either:
Who's king of the comic book nerds? Marvel Comics, that's who.

The creative powerhouse behind The Avengers, X-Men and Spider Man has led resurgence in both movies and comic books. In June, Marvel maintained its dominance as the top comic publisher with a market share of just over 44 percent, according to figures released on Friday by Diamond Comic Distributors, Inc. Marvel's dollar sales comprised more than 40 percent of the total market, the data showed.

Marvel's dominance was bolstered by "Civil War II," a new Marvel Universe story arc that has already ushered in the demise of two major characters associated with The Avengers.
Wow, and nothing's wrong with that? Naturally, they can't be bothered to answer why it's okay to knock off Bruce Banner and Jim Rhodes, nor why they don't see any value in them as storytelling vehicles for character drama.
DC Comics was a distant second, with June unit share of under 32 percent and a dollar share of 29.93 percent. Sales during the month were helped by DC's own universe-altering "Rebirth" storyline; two related Batman titles landed in the month's top 5 most popular comics.
While there may be some good news - that DC finally reversed all the nasty paths they took by killing off/villifying minor cast members during Identity Crisis - it's clear that they're still going to suffer some poor storytelling, and Dan DiDio's continued presence is enough to alienate plenty of people.
June was a mixed bag for comic producers, which reported double-digit monthly gains versus a year ago, but appeared to suffer in other comparisons.

Year to date, comic sales are down more than 8 percent from the same period in 2015, Diamond reported, with dollar sales off by nearly 4 percent. For the second quarter, comic book sales tumbled by more than 8 percent vs. Q2 of last year—but those losses were partly offset by strong graphic novel sales, which are comparatively more expensive.
As a matter of fact, some paperback compilations seem relatively less expensive than several issues of a pamphlet series are, by a few dollars. It's probably because the latter often costs 4 dollars these days, while the former can have cheaper advantages, and I'm sure a lot of readers would rather get the whole story together, rather than wait a month or two until the conclusions come out.
The sales underscore the changing economics of the comics business. For publishers, book sales have largely taken a backseat to the increasingly lucrative world of movie blockbusters, especially as the fan boy (and girl) audience has aged. Marvel is owned by Disney, while DC's parent company is Time Warner.
Predictably, they won't ask if poor scripting and political biases have ever brought down superhero comics, nor if the Big Two ever tried promoting them convincingly - and respectably - to crowds who just want tasteful escapist fare not laced with agendas. No doubt the leftist positions of the publishers are exactly what's keeping a lot of the press from lambasting them, and that's why they''re able to keep it up so shamelessly.

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  • I'm Avi Green
  • From Jerusalem, Israel
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