Comics have undergone a resurgence thanks to digital sales, yet some otherwise technologically sound fanboys stick to the old ways. Add to that the fact that comics haven’t really been profitable despite their characters producing some of the highest grossing films of all time, and you’ve got the beginnings of a compelling argument for why we should stop keeping these things around in their current form. In that spirit, Life’d now looks at the
We live in a shrinking world. Thanks to rising costs, shrinking wages, and an overall rotten economic outlook, we need all the living area we can to survive. And since most of us won’t be upgrading houses any time soon, it’s time to think about maximizing the space available for the best possible use. It’s doubtful long white cardboard boxes filled with poly-bagged comics is the answer. You’d be surprised at how quickly your sequential storytellers can choke out the floorspace in your room. Why obsess over it when you can simply make the switch to digital?
Over the years, some of my favorite comic books disappeared into thin air. Okay, so maybe they were really just misplaced, destroyed or stolen. The point is, those comics that I used to own and cherish are now gone. I don’t know where they are, and they’re not coming back any time soon. Thanks to cloud-based technologies, this harsh reality no longer needs to be of concern. Simply make a purchase, and your comic or graphic novel will always be there, even if you remove it from the device used for the purchase. Ever want to read it again? Just re-download for free, and you’re back in action.
At one time, the so-called “Direct Market” was a friendly place for independent publishers to be. And before you deride indies as crap, remember names like Image, Dark Horse, and Valiant. None of these brands would have ever had a prayer if they were starting out in the “Direct Market” of today. Diamond Comic Distributors, an increasingly worthless bane on the comic publishing community, is mostly to blame for forcing cash-strapped creators into offering the same discounts as the big boys and setting sales standards that were too high for most any indie without a big-name license to achieve. Of course, this same industry will deride income inequality and vote Democrat at the polls, but they have no problem sticking it to the little guy. Basically, Diamond throws up every obstacle they can until you’re able to make it IN SPITE OF them and not BECAUSE of them. Digital sales have started to level the playing field between Spider-Man and quality independents like Atomic Robo, hopefully hastening the day of the distributor’s demise.
Growing up I was a closet comic book fan because I had to be. My town was a football town, and if you weren’t playing in the big game on Thursday and later Friday nights, then you were hopelessly labeled a geek. Unfortunately, “geek” in the Nineties wasn’t as cool as “geek” in 2013. We hadn’t discovered how to create apps and make millions at that point. However, in some pockets, comics still have an unsavory stigma attached to them, and thanks to digital sales, you can read whatever you want, whenever you want, and no one has to be the wiser for it.
The only comic book that you’ll ever make six- or seven-figures on in 2013 are ones that were created 70 or 80 years ago. To get top dollar, they have to be in good shape, too. Good luck with that. The hard truth is, no comic created after the 1960s is going to be paying for your Hawaii vacation or serving as the down payment on a house. The vast majority are worthless, especially comics of the last few years. Since there is no monetary reason to keep new comics around anymore, you might as well cut your losses and go to digital.
The comic book industry, unfortunately, does a pretty good job of killing itself. You don’t need to speed along its demise by supporting the archaic paper copy delivery. If you want to see the art and the storytellers survive, buy a digital today.
What about you? Are you “off” paper comics? Have a compelling argument why we should keep them around? Sound off in the comments section below.