‘Final Crisis’ tanks; WildStorm Sales Worst Ever
There’s a lengthy breakdown of DC’s May sales up at The Beat, and it only serves as further notice that the ol’ warship is taking on copious amounts of water.
The big story, of course, is the soft debut of Final Crisis, which couldn’t even crack 145,000 issues, a paltry sum for any big comics event. It’s not only well south of the 250,000 issues of Secret Invasion #1 that sold, but even the 178,000 from the much less ballyhooed World War Hulk #1. Not good.
The problem, according to Marc-Oliver Frisch, is mainly one of marketing:
One reason that may have led to this loss of faith in DC’s product is the publisher’s recent string of high-level failures. … Retailers had learned their lessons, and I suppose there was no reason to presume that they were going to forget them when it came to ordering Final Crisis. DC would have to put out all the stops to convince them that this was going to be different.
Which they emphatically did not do. Crucially, DC never bothered to tell anyone what Final Crisis was going to be about. … The slogan with which DC chose to advertise the content of Final Crisis when pressed for it, “The Day Evil Won,” doesn’t really address the problem. I mean, congratulations, so you’ve got a second act in there somewhere, at the end of which the bad guys temporarily win, which they always do.
In short, there is no hook.
Which sounds an awful lot like what I had to say about the first issue.
Things go from worse to, well, worse for DC, as its WildStorm line is basically not selling any comics. The average units sold for the line was a shade over 9,800, which is its worst ever mark, Frisch writes.
All told, sales are down everywhere and a whopping 11 series have been canceled because of poor sales.
The only good point was Vertigo’s new House of Mystery series, which debuted at well more than 20,000 copies.
You're right.DC Marketing Department…learn to market!
The reason "Final Crisis" comics sales are down is that NOBODY believes that this is the FINAL Crisis. We know the title is a LIE! This is only the final crisis before the next one. At least the title, "Infinite Crisis" wasn't a lie. It was just an oxymoron, because it was only a mini-series.
I'm reading it because, even if it doesn't work, I know it'll be an interesting ride with Morrison at the helm. I'll tell you this, though: The fact that it's about yet another version of the New Gods is a tough pill to swallow. I've never cared for these characters, with the possible exception of Mister Miracle. The names alone make me itch, and I was really hoping that Death of the New Gods (which I passed on) meant we wouldn't see them again for a while…and one month later, here's "Dark Side" and "Mister Simyan" and "Mister Mokkari." Christ.The Super Young Team, though–they look interesting.
For what it's worth, I'm enjoying Final Crisis so far. Is it the "final-end-all-no-more-summer-events" book? Of course not. But I choose not to nitpik a title for it's name. While the book is a slower paced then most anticipated, I still think it's a quality book.Morrison isn't known for "knuckle bustin'" action titles. He tells stories in a more subdued manner. Ultimately it'd suck if DC's big event this summer winds up being avoided by nay sayers without giving it an honest chance. Heck, even I'm on the fence for Trinity thus far.
I was given one of those DC t-shirts with the evil eyes above the phrase "The day evil won."When I wear it now, in my head I'll be thinking of it as my shirt about "The summer DC lost."
It doesn't help that the lead in – Countdown – was not very good at all. DC had some serious creative momentum in the wake of 52, and for whatever reason it seems to have fizzled a bit. [Exceptions – Johns on GL & Supe, Morrison on Batman] I'm sure Final Crisis will be cool – I mean, it is Morrison – but enthusiasm is a bit hard to work up when you've been so recently burned. And I second the [blasphemous] "never really cared for the New Gods except Mr Miracle." Kirby was king, but it never really did much for me.
144,000 copies is not "tank". It's only outsold by Marvel's big summer event Secret Invasion.Your bias is showing.
Um, no it didn't.
Sure it is. To be bragging about 144,000 copies sold in — not "sold" as many retailers have lots of unsold copies — is a cop out… even if FC did sell in 144,000 copies. That's embarrassing for the "be-all and end-all finally-straightening-out-the-DCU." Once you get past the completists and the collectibles market, this type of sell-in does not bode well for the promotion of the DC line in general.What it comes down to is this: when you look at discrete readers, defined as the number of different people actually reading Final Crisis, the big event isn't attracting any more people than ComicMix. And DC's been around 73 years longer, has a bunch of teevee shows and movies to serve as promotion and, oh yeah, Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman.They should be doing better. And as fans, we have the obligation to hold them to a higher standard.
ComicMix comics have discrete readers that number around 150,000? Wow! That's impressive. Why do the discrete comments for any single comic issue or article number in the tens? Look at YouTube, a video with 5 million views will also have 20 thousand comments. A response rate of about .4%! That's TINY! Minuscule. But, it still means that a Comic with 150 thousand views should pull in about 600 comments if ComicMix had similar rates.I think the comments section will ultimately become one of that major selling points for ComicMix. [This comes from one of ComicMix's most neurotically prolific writer of comments.]Feedback on comics can not only improve the work over time. Feedback encourages a level of involvement and a sense of ownership from the readers.So, should ComicMix try to encourage feedback? I say, "Yes."What can encourage more feedback? I think when writers respond to comments on their work, people who comment are doubly rewarded. We feel like somebody important cares about us and what we have to say AND we get to interact with the "star."Michael Davis consistently has some of the most highly commented on columns. Why? One reason is he regularly responds to many postings. This creates a sense of drama and discussion in his columns. This not only adds to the NUMBER of comments, but to the number of discrete commentors who want to post. I think it should be mechanically easier to comment on comics on ComicMix. Right now, if you want to comment on a comic, you have to navigate to a different page and write your comment there. If you want to refer back to what you are commenting on, you have to open a separate window or a separate tab with the comic.Currently ComicMix has the best comics reader on the web. This has a cool floating "Info" window that Brian Alvey and his busy elves have just upgraded with Ad Placements! Cool. Rock ON! Nice touch gang! I would like to be able to see the comments on an issue and make comments on an issue in the floating window. Either in a panel of the "Info" window, or in a similar floating "Comments" window. The easier you can make the process of writing comments, the more comments you will get.Should ComicMix have an open or moderated "Message Board" forum?Should ComicMix make itself something like a social Networking site? Should registered users be able to connect with each other. Make their own pages. Or does that muddy the waters?Look at how Amazon.com handles comments. You can not only track your favorite authors, you can track the people who write comments! You can see ALL the things one commentor has commented on.