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Friday, December 29, 2017

Convergence kills

The business world is beginning to recognize that more and more corporations have a diversity problem:
Does the world of comic-book superheroes have a diversity problem?

The question matters a lot for investors. Here’s why.

Consumers pay up for good, original content. And comic books come through in spades. They spawn a colorful array of endearing superheroes, followed by profitable movie spinoffs, action figures and collectibles.

Thus superheroes play a significant role in sales trends at Time Warner TWX, +0.26%  and Walt Disney Co. DIS, +0.12% home of DC Comics and Marvel Entertainment, respectively. They also impact sales at Netflix NFLX, +0.64% which has produced two popular series based on comic-book characters, Cinemark CNK, +1.49% Regal Entertainment RGC, +0.04% AMC Entertainment AMC, +5.32% Hasbro HAS, -0.16% and Mattel MAT, -1.79%

So if the new wave of “diverse” superheroes has caused the recent slump in comic-book sales growth, that’s a trend investors need to sit up and notice.

In the past few years, Disney’s Marvel Entertainment has rolled out an Afro-Latino Spider-Man, a Muslim Ms. Marvel, a female Thor, a gay Iceman, a Korean Hulk, an African-American female lead in Iron Man, and a lesbian Latina America Chavez.

Now fans accustomed to more “traditional” characters may have come down with diversity fatigue. And they could be walking away in protest....

Already, the trends don’t look good. Last year, sales growth of comic books, graphic novels and digital offerings cooled off to 5.3% as revenue hit $1.08 billion, says ICv2. That was significantly lower than the 9.9% annual average growth during 2010-2015.

This year could be even worse. ICv2 President Milton Griepp says comic-book store sales fell 10.5% in the first nine months of this year compared with the same time in 2016. He doesn’t yet have hard numbers for digital and regular bookstore sales. But he doubts they will be strong enough to offset the steep decline at comic-book stores, which account for over half of sales.
Convergence represents a problem for some, but tremendous opportunity for others. And as for our foray into comics, we are on track to release at least two 24-pagers in both digital and print format in February, as well as a pair of full-length black-and-white graphic novels.

And the good news is that SJWs always double down, as one perspicacious and hauntingly magnetic observer has noted.
Marvel also pushes back on the theory that diversity hurts sales.... So Marvel is sticking to its guns. “We have had such a great opportunity to create new and interesting characters that are truly representative of the way the world is,” says Sana Amanat, Marvel’s content development director who helped create Kamala Kahn, the popular Muslim Ms. Marvel. “We have made great strides, and we have more to go.”
But the writer has what really promises to be a great idea:

Here’s a suggestion for Cebulski, from the cheap seats. Your company, Marvel, loves to say it reflects the world outside your window. If so, why not step up and launch a series that features alt-right characters battling it out with social justice warriors?  

That would, indeed, be intriguing, would it not? What a brilliant idea!

 

Labels: , ,

57 Comments:

Anonymous Randomatos December 29, 2017 8:35 AM  

Does it occur to them that shoehorning "popular" onto the description of a comic failing to sell enough to keep the printers producing it fed with ink and paper might not be a terribly effective magic spell. Diverse does not equal popular. Diverse plus converged equals failure (both failure to sell, and failure to entertain).

Anonymous Looking Glass December 29, 2017 8:36 AM  

The history of business book to be written on the topic should be named something like, "SJWs Kill Companies or: How I learned to Laugh at SJWs & profited off their failure".

Insert Ivan Throne laughing picture here.

Blogger The Observer December 29, 2017 8:39 AM  

In the past few years, Disney’s Marvel Entertainment has rolled out an Afro-Latino Spider-Man, a Muslim Ms. Marvel, a female Thor, a gay Iceman, a Korean Hulk, an African-American female lead in Iron Man, and a lesbian Latina America Chavez.

"But they're trying to reach out to new markets! Nothing to do with SJWs at all!" is the protest I hear.

Well...guess those markets don't really exist.

Convergence represents a problem for some, but tremendous opportunity for others. And as for our foray into comics, we are on track to release at least two 24-pagers in both digital and print format in February, as well as a pair of full-length black-and-white graphic novels.

Ooh, this is going to be good. And hot on the heels of the estimated website release, too!

Blogger The Observer December 29, 2017 8:44 AM  

Addendum:

Is Marvel backpedaling?

https://twitter.com/verge/status/946499167446294528

"Marvel wants you to write Marvel comics with no farts, death, aliens, gossip, or 'social issues'"

Appears to have ticked off a lot of SJWs...but unfortunately, I don't think the old fans are going to be rushing back.

Anonymous E Deploribus Unum December 29, 2017 8:54 AM  

I don't think the old fans are going to be rushing back.

One of the appealing things about a comics universe is the continuity. The sort of person who ponies up $70 or more per week for his comics fix is expecting a certain integrity to the decisions made by editorial about his favorite characters. As diversity decisions have multiplied, interest from this group has waned. That's where the money is for comic store owners, unfortunately.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan December 29, 2017 8:56 AM  

MSESPN is finding out the hard way, Clay Travis is given free material each week on that downfall.

I cannot wait till the yard sale signs go up in all the sports ballers' yards and ESPN HQ is a homeless shelter for puppies and kittens.

Blogger JACIII December 29, 2017 8:56 AM  

The Observer wrote:Addendum:

Is Marvel backpedaling?

https://twitter.com/verge/status/946499167446294528

"Marvel wants you to write Marvel comics with no farts, death, aliens, gossip, or 'social issues'"

Appears to have ticked off a lot of SJWs...but unfortunately, I don't think the old fans are going to be rushing back.


Delicious.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan December 29, 2017 8:59 AM  

The Coalition of the Fringes is not exactly a cohesive juggernaut of fate, eg; you think the soibois and the fatty blue hairs really want to pay the salaries of the sportsballers? Hah!

Blogger McChuck December 29, 2017 9:04 AM  

Popular "Muslim Ms. Marvel"? Popular with whom? The Muslims don't like women in power roles, and the Brits don't like Muslims taking over their country.

Blogger VD December 29, 2017 9:07 AM  

The history of business book to be written on the topic should be named something like, "SJWs Kill Companies or: How I learned to Laugh at SJWs & profited off their failure".

Remember that surprise I mentioned? Yeah, you'll see something very much like that a LOT sooner than you think.

Blogger stevo December 29, 2017 9:10 AM  

Question from a non comics guy. Are today's comics aimed at kids, teens, or adults?

Blogger tuberman December 29, 2017 9:12 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger tuberman December 29, 2017 9:20 AM  

Do any of you think that some of the shallow SJWs will pretend to flip, and some really will come over? Rhetorical question.

They will, obviously, as a number of Bernie Bros already have, but you people know the drill, no leadership roles.

Blogger tuberman December 29, 2017 9:22 AM  

Waiting for February with baited breath. In deep with suspense, anticipation of the wonderful culture wars to up the ante.

Half the fun will be watching Marvel and DC's responses. New age coming, but not what the SJWs want or expected.

Blogger L' Aristokrato December 29, 2017 9:26 AM  

stevo wrote:Question from a non comics guy. Are today's comics aimed at kids, teens, or adults?

Manchilden.

Of course, they don't have to be, but that's what we have currently.

Blogger darkdoc December 29, 2017 9:27 AM  

Sana Amanat, Marvel’s content development director who helped create Kamala Kahn, the popular Muslim Ms. Marvel. “We have made great strides, and we have more to go.”

SJW's MUST double down, because they must never surrender ground they already won.

Well, SJW, prepare for a brutal collision with reality.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan December 29, 2017 9:27 AM  

Is it true that Muslim Ms. Kahn saved a LGBTQ parade from violent reprisals against love?

No true conservative would pit fundy muslims against prog SJW skin suiters ever, because they have principles.

Blogger James Dixon December 29, 2017 9:33 AM  

> ... we are on track to release at least two 24-pagers in both digital and print format in February, as well as a pair of full-length black-and-white graphic novels.

I don't have to words to express how much I am looking forward to this.

Blogger James Dixon December 29, 2017 9:35 AM  

> Is it true that Muslim Ms. Kahn saved a LGBTQ parade from violent reprisals against love?

If so, and the comic reflected reality, her family would engage in an honor killing due the shame her action brought upon them.

Anonymous Killua December 29, 2017 9:35 AM  

This is why Alt Hero will be awesome.

In a few years, I imagine games, animated videos, maybe even movies.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan December 29, 2017 9:45 AM  

Ms. Muslim got her freak on one night in an act of owning her own body and orgasm and a pregnancy occurred but evil white devil Roy Moore a governor of Red State Nazigrad had shuttered all Planned Parenthood facilities of love.

But, but Ms. Kahn Ms Marvel flew into action and destroyed Nazigrad and re-opened the capitol's PP clinic and 30 weeks after her sex positive experience she hit the stirrups of tolerance.

Stay tuned next episode; Does Ms. Marvel Muslim remove her hair covering?

OpenID crapulux December 29, 2017 9:46 AM  

SJWs always double down...

Professor tweets he wants some good old white genocide for christmas. Unsurprisingly, he receives some good old death threats in return. Then he doubles down and plays victim.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sohgGpXeHmc

Sargon's comments in this video are priceless. Also, the attitudes of the SJWs in there are just... just... I have no words.

Blogger JACIII December 29, 2017 9:46 AM  

VD wrote:The history of business book to be written on the topic should be named something like, "SJWs Kill Companies or: How I learned to Laugh at SJWs & profited off their failure".

Remember that surprise I mentioned? Yeah, you'll see something very much like that a LOT sooner than you think.



Suggestion: Hire an unbannable (Hindu, black, muslim, lesbian, etc) to be market rep and the friendly face for this on twitter and FB. H1B applicant reject would do nicely.

Blogger Dirtnapninja December 29, 2017 9:46 AM  

White Erasure also erases your customer base.

Anonymous Blastmaster December 29, 2017 9:57 AM  

Popular in newsrooms and editorial boards

Blogger Aeoli Pera December 29, 2017 10:01 AM  

Dirtnapninja wrote:White Erasure also erases your customer base.

"Just die already white man, but fix my car first."

Anonymous Ominous Cowherd December 29, 2017 10:03 AM  

darkdoc wrote:SJW's MUST double down, because they must never surrender ground they already won.

That sounds like Hitler's methods on the Eastern Front. OMG!!! SJWs are Literally Hitler! Just like us! Now I'm confused.

Anonymous Looking Glass December 29, 2017 10:06 AM  

@10 VD

I was suggesting what would be the retrospective on the era, but writing the How To book could be valuable for a lot of people. Especially when it can be shown to be predictive, which is always great for the author.

Now, if we can figure out how out to use SJW tears as fuel for Fusion reactors, we're going to colonize the solar system with that much energy.

Blogger Aeoli Pera December 29, 2017 10:06 AM  

JACIII wrote:Suggestion: Hire an unbannable (Hindu, black, muslim, lesbian, etc) to be market rep and the friendly face for this on twitter and FB. H1B applicant reject would do nicely.

I think gay, Jewish Milo is busy but it wouldn't hurt to ask.

Blogger Anno Ruse December 29, 2017 10:11 AM  

"Suggestion: Hire an unbannable (Hindu, black, muslim, lesbian, etc) to be market rep and the friendly face for this on twitter and FB."

They had a Muslim artist working for them for a while. They had to fire him because he was sneaking anti-semitic messages into the art. Funny stuff.

Anonymous BBGKB December 29, 2017 10:18 AM  

Moslem green lantern motto

In Brightest day, in blackest night
No unattended 6yo white girl will escape my sight
Let those who worship civilization's might
Behold my power green jihadi suicide vest tight

, a Korean Hulk,

His origin story was Philly forcing stores in black neighborhoods to remove bulletproof glass

http://dailycaller.com/2017/12/14/philadelphia-gets-approval-to-remove-bulletproof-glass-from-local-businesses/

Of course Snopes lies about the story. "Did a Philadelphia Politician say Bulletproof Glass is ‘Racist’?" Snopes no she said ballistic glass.

a Muslim Ms. Marvel Of course a lesbian came up with the idea of a woman who could alter the size of her fists.

"But they're trying to reach out to new markets! Nothing

Having worn a WHITE LIVES MATTER shirt to various venues, I suggest they might want to get "real world" numbers on the literacy of these "new markets"

OT: Ivan Throne's Impalement Stops Invasion leaves no doubt on which side you are on.

OT: relevant to kills: 3 separate (((ghouls))) in the news.

Baby body part (((seller))) busted #PPGATE

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5212907/Federal-agents-fetuses-body-brokers-warehouse.html

also http://www.shtfplan.com/headline-news/exquisite-human-leather-products-wallets-belts-shoes-being-sold-online_12252017

and
If you donate your body to science jews might scam you one last time.

https://www.reuters.com/investigates/special-report/usa-bodies-business/

Blogger Al From Bay Shore December 29, 2017 10:22 AM  

@22 THANX! Great video!

Blogger NITZAKHON December 29, 2017 10:27 AM  

@McChuck:

I remember reading, many years ago, about the wine-and-dine party NYC socialites had for the Black Panthers. There they were, thugs-galore, standing in the light at a party with champagne and hors d'oeuvres like caviar, etc., while the "progressive elites" toasted their revolutionary aspects.

They were probably thinking "Just wait, man... gonna get you too."

That's the problem with Leftists; they think nothing can ever truly change or go south.

Blogger tz December 29, 2017 10:42 AM  

@11 They are aimed into the air - the bat Virtue Signal, as far as I can tell. Cardboard cutouts of the old superheroes - and villians - have more depth. They were very different - the goody Superman v.s. the Dark Batman. The old comics had good plots and storylines.

In the old days, there were evil dictators, (ufo) aliens, or corporations (think lexcorp or kingpin from daredevil).

The problem with SJW convergence is the enemies are abstractions, and the best they can do is portray a group of rednecks attacking a gay fashion show. They like the dictatorial tyranny of socialism so can't attack government. How do you make Obamacare a plotline? Their "morality" is so shallow you can't create the complex moralty plays. The Joker would be reduced to an angry white male. There never will be even Milos on the left because they have no originality. They can only mock what others create. And if they took it to the proper conclusion, the heros would be destroying normal families and promoting pedophelia. Gender transitioning before puberty is passed is a form of child abuse, but lets see if that would sell.

Blogger Dave December 29, 2017 10:44 AM  

Are you still looking at releasing the digital editions sooner or will everything be in February​?

Blogger Thucydides December 29, 2017 10:55 AM  

“We have had such a great opportunity to create new and interesting characters that are truly representative of the way the world is,”

OK, so I haven't read comics in decades, but I do recall that comics, movies, SF novels etc. were there to entertain you and allow you to escape from the world the way it really is for a short while.

And SJW world isn't reflective of the way the world really is anyway......

Blogger VD December 29, 2017 11:03 AM  

Are you still looking at releasing the digital editions sooner or will everything be in February​?

We'll see. It depends entirely on the artists. The full graphic novels won't be until later, since they require three (6) finished 48-page (24-page) comics. But we'll start getting digital versions out to the backers along with the 24-pagers.

Along with a bonus 24-pager.

Anonymous Nibiru December 29, 2017 11:16 AM  

Marvels` Sana Amanat. Check out her tweets. Talk about a loon.

Blogger JC December 29, 2017 11:22 AM  

I have kids who like Lego and I have rarely seen it on special but I saw the DC Super Heroes sets aimed at girls at half price the other day. Looked around to see if it wasn’t just confirmation bias but everything else was normal price.

I’m not a gambling man but I’d go all in against SJWs every time.

Blogger Dave December 29, 2017 11:28 AM  

launch a series that features alt-right characters battling it out with social justice warriors?

He didn't Google alt right comics. Hope you sent him the Alt Hero press release.

Anonymous Joe T December 29, 2017 11:29 AM  

Not sure how big a market it is, but those in my culture (Christian, Homeschooling, Rebels) are looking for comics with good stories that are a little less heavy on the sex - Skimpy outfits, etc. I stopped collecting years ago because 1. The stories were painfully predictable 2. Telling my children to be pure while gazing at comics panels with basketball-sized breasts was hypocritical.

If Castalia Comics had such a line, I'd buy it.

Blogger Feather Blade December 29, 2017 11:33 AM  

“We have had such a great opportunity to create new and interesting characters..."

And what did they do with those opportunities?

Took old characters and re-skinned them.

Laziest. "New and interesting". Ever.

Anonymous Looking Glass December 29, 2017 11:47 AM  

On what SJWs do to stories, I think their holy text is M. Night Shyamalan's "The Happening". In that movie, the trees were killing people until they just stopped. Significant humor to be had in that movie, though utterly unintentional.

As for SJWs and business, it strikes me there are actually several books under the heading but different in approach & application.

- Keeping SJWs out: structures to harden & prevent infiltration.
- Clearing SJWs out: purging Stage 2 & Stage 3 companies before they go off the cliff.
- Encouraging SJWs in your competitors: how to sink another company through their SJWs.
- Profiting from the corpses of SJW-infested companies.
- Investment approaches to avoid SJW-infested companies.

There's really an entire genre developing here. Fascinating.

Anonymous Crew (not the one who makes stupid claims) December 29, 2017 12:49 PM  

Can we get Tom Kratman to do some comics? That would be awesome. Lots of crucifixions and guns.

Blogger Francis The Pope December 29, 2017 1:01 PM  

Changing the race of Spiderman is a big deal, but I wonder what will happen if they change the biggest of them all either Batman or Superman.

Anonymous JAG December 29, 2017 1:06 PM  

“We have had such a great opportunity to create new and interesting characters that are truly representative of the way the world is,” says Sana Amanat, Marvel’s content development director who helped create Kamala Kahn, the popular Muslim Ms. Marvel. “We have made great strides, and we have more to go.”

The writer uses the word "popular". I do not think it means what they think it means.

Anonymous Brick Hardslab December 29, 2017 1:21 PM  

The whole marvel line is dying because of stupid decisions. But maybe they'd rather succeed at virtue signaling than selling comics.

Blogger Brad Matthews December 29, 2017 1:29 PM  

Hombre de Acero

Anonymous Just another commenter December 29, 2017 1:51 PM  

Related tangent on SJWs, altruism, and mental states:
I wonder if Anonymous Conservative (of r/K fame) has talked with Abigail Marsh? Seems like they might have some research in common. Maybe there is a hormone treatment for SJW-ism.

Blogger Ingot9455 December 29, 2017 2:06 PM  

@43 They already tried to change Batman's race with the 'Batmen Of All Nations' gag. ie, Batman tried to franchise himself out so every town or country can have their own Batman. Muslim parkour Batman in Cairo, etc.


Anonymous AB.Prosper December 29, 2017 2:28 PM  

More important, comic book sales includes a lot of non converged Manga titles. Overall sales at the converged companies could be a lot lower

Anecdotal only my local book store has nearly as much Manga as SF/Fantasy (and its shelved in the same area) and it sells well but less traditional comics than gun magazines

Blogger Miguel December 29, 2017 4:52 PM  

"Sana Amanat, Marvel’s content development director who helped create Kamala Kahn, the popular Muslim Ms. Marvel"

lol VD, and not in a disrespectful way, your books pretty much wrote themselves!

Blogger Coriolanus Rex December 29, 2017 6:15 PM  

Vox give me a T-Shirt of that Military Superhero with the sledgehammer punching Captain Europa(I hope we all remember that picture) and you have a sale. Or maybe a T-Shirt of a Lumberjack looking Canadian SuperHero mocking a analogous Canadian politician. Then you'll really have a sale.

Blogger Coriolanus Rex December 29, 2017 6:16 PM  

Vox give me a T-Shirt of that Military Superhero with the sledgehammer punching Captain Europa(I hope we all remember that picture) and you have a sale. Or maybe a T-Shirt of a Lumberjack looking Canadian SuperHero mocking a analogous Canadian politician. Then you'll really have a sale.

Blogger Michael Maier December 29, 2017 7:57 PM  

JC wrote:I have kids who like Lego and I have rarely seen it on special but I saw the DC Super Heroes sets aimed at girls at half price the other day. Looked around to see if it wasn’t just confirmation bias but everything else was normal price.

I’m not a gambling man but I’d go all in against SJWs every time.


Really? What store chain? I can maybe score cheap birthday gifts for my niece!

Anonymous JJ Timmins December 29, 2017 10:56 PM  

They will never get the fact that it's not the race / ethnicity / sexuality / etc. of the characters that's the problem. It's that those things supplant character. No character, no story. No story, no one gives a shit. They should look at anime fans. No identity politics ever, yet they attract fans of all kinds equally. But will SJWs learn? Nah. Hurry up with AH please or some more sample art at least.

Blogger The Overgrown Hobbit December 30, 2017 1:56 AM  

@39 I stopped collecting years ago because 1. The stories were painfully predictable 2. Telling my children to be pure while gazing at comics panels with basketball-sized breasts was hypocritical.

Take a look at Doug Ten Napel, Royden Lepp, and Ben Hatke for comics to read yourself and share with your teens.

There's also this, but I can't personally vouch for the work: http://www.christiancomicarts.com/profiles/members/

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