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Off My Mind: Why Superhero Movies Don't Sell Comics

Millions of people are watching movies based on comic books but are not becoming comic book readers afterwards.

Superheroes and comic books are everywhere these days. Hollywood has been clamoring to pick up the rights to any comic book property they can. Disney bought Marvel for $4 billion dollars. Fox is doing everything they can to retain the movie rights to the X-Men, Daredevil and Fantastic Four. Even television is in the comic book game with Smallville having just finished ten seasons and soon we'll see shows based on Powers, 100 Bullets and The Incredible Hulk as well as animated series based on Spider-Man and Batman.

You will not find this team in your local comic shop.

Despite all the attention comic books and superhero characters are getting, comic book sales are low. Yesterday Sara touched on the fact that movies and the big comic book events are not helping to increase sales. She even sited the fact that May's sales were down over the previous year even though a movie based on Thor was relatively successful in theaters.

If more and more people are becoming aware of the different comic book characters thanks to all the movies and television shows, how come more people aren't buying comics?

== TEASER ==
Aaaaah! How could you make a movie without us?!?

I brought up the main reason on our podcast on June 3. If someone goes to see a comic book movie and does want to start reading comics based on the characters, what comic should they read? Take X-Men: First Class, for example. For all the new or returning X-Men fans seeing that film, there isn't a comic they could pick up that has characters similar to what they saw on the big screen. There is no X-Men comic taking place in the 60s. Characters like Angel Salvadore, Azazel, Darwin and even Havok are not appearing in any comics (although Havok should be returning shortly and Darwin was recently in X-Factor).

James McAvoy did a good job as Professor X but people might wonder why he's bald in the comics. Michael Fassbender was great as Magneto but now is an old man who hasn't really been doing a whole lot since moving to the X-Men's island and home of Utopia.

What about The Dark Knight? When that was in theaters, Bruce Wayne was dead and wasn't even Batman. Most people should know the story of Batman from past movies and animated shows but after the movie, they would have no idea what was going, coming in halfway through the direction Grant Morrison's was taking Bruce. Harvey Dent died in the movie and how come there's no mention of Rachel Dawes in any comics if she was so close to Bruce?

I don't remember seeing these comics in my comic shop.

Green Lantern did pretty well this past weekend. Even though there were movie prequel comics, if someone new to Green Lantern tried picking up any comic from the regular series, they would have absolutely no idea what was going on. The comics in the midst of the War of the Green Lanterns plus the fact that there are several other colored Lantern Corps. There's also the fact that the Hal Jordan on the big screen is a bit snarkier than the one in the comics.

What Green Lantern did do well was have an actual ad for comics (trade paperbacks) at the very end of the movie. People should know that there is a comic but why not remind them. But even that isn't enough. One of the comics storyline being advertised was Secret Origin. I was pretty surprised that they didn't try sticking closer to this updated origin of Hal Jordan and the other characters in the movie.

What about Blu-rays and DVDs? If people are buying comic book movies after (most likely) having seen them in theaters, that shows they are willing to spend a little more money on the character. There's always previews for other movies, often somewhat related to the specific movie. What aren't included are any trailers or ads for comic books? We have seen publishers like Marvel and BOOM! make trailers for their comics. This could be another way to encourage viewers to learn more about the characters they obviously have an interest in. Sometimes we'll get a virtual comic in the special features but even that doesn't try selling new issues.

This Rogue looks absolutely nothing like she did in the movies.

The main thing is there isn't a comic for those that just know the characters from the movies. Movies will never 100% faithfully adapt comics and we will always have this divide between the two. We sometimes see minor changes where characters start to appear as the Hollywood actors playing them but that's about the extent we have. There simply is no easy convenient way for movie-goers to jump into comics. With the rate storylines change month to month, even if the publishers and Hollywood tried working together more closely, the comic book versions are likely to have gone through a major change like death or a different costume before the new reader can even make it to a comic shop.

There's always the possibility that some new readers will be found after a movie hits theaters but no one should count on a mass exodus from theaters to comic shops. The existing comic book storylines can't and shouldn't be compromised or watered down in order to accommodate the possibility of new readers. More comics that are new-reader friendly and have a tie to the movie universe could be a solution. But would new readers be okay with what most of us think are high prices (but we're sort of used to it)? There's also the commitment. Would a new reader be willing to venture to a comic shop every week or are they content with leaving the theater and not worrying about the characters until a sequel is released?

There are sometimes movie tie-in comics but unfortunately they comics often lack substance and feel rushed. Marvel had originally announced a movie universe line of comics but there hasn't been any word of it since. It would just be too much of a gamble in the hopes that new readers would find them. Comic shops couldn't be sure of how many copies to order since they would have no idea how many new readers would walk in off the street.

Comic book movies may bring in new readers but it won't be enough to make a notable difference.

71 Comments
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Posted by yeopop

I think everything's done in comics.

Posted by Soldier zero

I think that the probllem is that comics and movies are two very different forms of entertainment.
A movie is supposed to be a relativly self contained product that is about 2 hours long and doesn't require any specific knowledge (except maybe those of its prequels). Comics on the other hand are (in)famous for going on forver and having a complex contituity to deal with. The difference is the same that exist between playing a level of Tetris and playing a game like Metal Gear Solid. When you play Tetris you just shut down you brain for some time and there's no "previous knowledge" only falling blocks. MGS has a complex story that somehow you're supposed to follow.
 
In this sense, I think, TV shows are a better idea than movie for promoting, since they already gave the watcher a sense of perspective and continuity.

Posted by fitchy101

Jumping in halfway through one of Morrsions runs is never a great idea for a new reader....

Posted by leokearon

One of the problems I think is that if you are going to see a movie based on a comic, chances are you already buy the comics. Also as mentioned things are different in the comics that the movies so there is no jumping in point as such.
Posted by VanAce

I don't think movies are the best way to market comics like Soldier Zero mentioned TV shows would be better.  
 
What needs to be done is some money needs to spent advertising the comics in different place than normal create awareness. This could be in websites or magazines which do not target the demographic which read comics or in or in publications/ websites that would compliment comics like videos, anime etc.

Posted by obscurefan

Honestly I think the reason is pretty simple. Some people are willing to read comic books, some people aren't, and way more people out there are willing to go see movies. Even if the book is good and the movie based on it is good, if you are old enough to go out there and buy your own ticket to the theater to see a movie, odds are you've lived long enough to decide whether or not you want to pick up a comic book. If you haven't done that by that point the only way you'll start reading is if other people who you trust personally tell you "you need to read this."

Posted by PeteyParker

"Harvey Dent was died in the movie......." WHAAAAT?! 

Posted by HaHaManHV
@Soldier zero: I agree 100%. I don't think that a movie goer is going to check out any of the comics that a movie came from because they won't hold that attention unless it's extraordinarily well done. Unless theater's begin selling comic books right outside of the door, most people just won't care. 
 
I think that what needs to happen is that comic book movies more closely resemble their counterparts. Marvel does a fine job of this, but studios like Fox aren't doing anybody but themselves any good with a team as random as First Class. Good movie or not, people want more of what they saw, not more random characters they didn't meet yet.
Posted by Eyz

2 things to consider:
Comics shouldn't ever EVER adjust to the movies. They're not marketing tools for the movies or just mere merchandising. It's a whole separate art, darn' it!
If you think otherwise, check out anything by Scott McCloud. Perhaps it will open your eyes.
And secondly, comics don't necessary "sell low". One, people should consider sells oversees (the majority of Marvel, DC, Dark Horse for example gets translated and imported by various external publishers all around the world) and two, stop focusing on the on-going issues sales. I only follow my comics (even with some delays in storylines) on TPBs now. Lots of people do too.
TPBs have sold well over the last couple of years, they're where the big numbers are done.
 
Interested in X character? Don't buy a random issue in the middle of some art, find a TPB, past or present. According to the story arc, etc... Contained stories!

Edited by Sekele

Seriously, the industry has basically killed itself with all the endless ongoing plots  
 
There's a reason why stories were mostly stand-alone during the Golden and Silver Age 

Posted by Sekele
@Eyz:  
The problem is that the companies are very willing to cancel a story if it doesn't sell good in the ongoing format, so a good story may get axed and never make it into TPB form  
 
Don't you just love the American comic industry? 
Edited by JonesDeini
@Soldier zero:  
Bingo, what you said and the lump sum of what G-Man just said are what I more or less wrote a treatise on in Bab's piece on this. Another problem is that out of all forms of entertainment media comics give the least amount of bang for your buck. If liked the Thor movie I can just wait another 2/3 years and see the next part for $10. If I liked Smallville I can just wait a week for the next part of the story for free.   
 
@Sekele:  
Yup, yup. *sheds a tear for Black Widow* I used to just wait to buy trades but I decided to switch to weeklies to support the stories I enjoy and boost the chance that they'll make it to trade. 
Edited by cosmo111687

I think the three things that would most improve DC and Marvel's businesses would be:
 

  1. Increased advertising for major comic book events. Although the most basic elements of Batman are well known in pop culture, very few people know that Batman recently returned from the dead (in a manner of speaking) or that Dick Grayson replaced him. By simply placing advertising before the movies, cartoons, and video games based upon their properties, DC and Marvel could potentially draw in thousands of new readers.
  2. Greater affordability and convenience.  Deals such as " With the purchase of Wonder Woman and the Furies or Lois Lane: Behind Enemy Lines, get a 25% discount off of any other Flash-Point book" could help make tie-ins more affordable and keep new readers hooked - rather than scare them away.
  3. Create a massive digital library that could only be accessed via a subscription fee of comic books that have gone out of print. Though many people can illegally acquire most comic books for free on-line, Netflix and Hulu have demonstrated that millions of people are willing to pay a small fee (just $10.00 a month, or something) rather than illegally download episodes of their favourite shows simply out of convenience. The same principle should be applicable for comic books. DC and Marvel are simply losing money by not doing this. 
Posted by tonis

They shouldn't confuse column A with column B in this case.

The immediate 'success' or 'failure' in a movie endeavor with a character isn't really relevant to current book sales of same said character.

You'll really know if a movie had an impact in a 1-5 year 'residual' influence analysis where you'll see if it picked up interest or not across specific medias, age groups, etc.

If the idiots at the top keep thinking so narrowly that they don't realize where they have seeds they'll just keep looping and rebooting, till they finally have to stop just throwing money at it and learn to patiently wait for their markets to catch on like they have in the past.

Comics, and the characters in them need to grow, and it just doesn't magically happen in 2 hours any more than in one issue.

Edited by ArtisticNeedham

One of the problems I see is that for the most part comics are too bogged down in continuity and stories going on before the movie comes out so that when the movie is out the character is either unrecognizable or in an unfamiliar situation than he or she is presented in in the movie.
In another post I wrote about how when Iron Man 1 came out he was being portrayed as a jerk during Civil War right before it came out and then he became Director of SHIELD.
OR Captain America, right now Steve Rogers isn't Captain America, he is Director of the Avengers Steve Rogers.  Kids need to be able to go and pick up a comic and immediatly recognize that Steve Rogers is Captain America, wears this particular costume (similar enough to the one in the movie) and fights these bad guys like he does in the movies.
Another problem I see is that a character is sometimes in the midst of a epic three part story when the movie comes out, like Batman.  He died, came back, and then there was Batman Inc.  And from what I hear you should read all the way back to Batman's death story to understand what is going on exactly.  Maybe its a great story but for younger readers it might be hard to get into.
Right now in Green Lantern Hal is not even the Green Lantern, Abin Sur is because of Flashpoint.  But right before that Hal was part of the Rainbow Corps or whatever they were called, as a Yellow Lantern.  The comic was in the middle of a big story.
And a different problem could be the large variety of different titles for one character.  Green Lantern, Emerald Warriors, Green Lantern Corps, So many different titles, which one should a young kid start with?  
And another problem is how the films can alter the teams, like what you were saying with the picture examples.  X-Men never had that roster, Captain America's costume doesn't look the same as the movie, Green Lantern's costume is different.  The original X-Men movie had them in black leather costumes, Rogue was a kid, and the bad guys looked different too.  What they might want to think about is trying to make sure the movie versions look similar enough that a person on the street can recognize the comic character based on the movie and vise versa.
But one of the biggest problems I see stopping newer readers, and young kids who want to start reading is lack of exposure to the product.
When I was younger I started getting comics by buying them at local grocery stores like Ralph's, Vons, etc.  They had a comic book rack near the front of the store.  That's where I got Cap as a Werewolf comic.  Kids probably don't know about comic book stores for the most part, I didn't.  But if they see Green Lantern comics at a local grocery store when the movie is in the theaters.  Sometimes I I will see a comic, one, at a grocery store.  But its a gamble, because they usually don't.  And I do sometimes see a magazine type booklet thingy that is a tie in to the Thor movie or Green Lantern, but what I am talking about is actual comics that are sold in comic shops too, like the latest Spider-Man or Batman.
Maybe its easier for kids to find comic stores now a days, but when I was younger I didn't  know where they were.  And I think lately there are even less of them, so a kid and his parents are less likely to stumble onto one or drive far out of their way to one.
So my idea on how comic companies should sell more comics is by getting more comics sold in grocery stores.  Not every issue, just a few, like a handful.  In the magazine rack or on their own comic rack near the front registers, where adults can see them.  So a Green Lantern movie is out, why not have a Green Lantern comic on the comic rack near the front right next to the Thor Comic and the X-Men comic.  Another thing that got me hooked was my local library, when I was in 6th grade, had these encyclopedia books on Spider-Man and the Fantastic Four that contained old stories like the FF's first meeting with the Inhumans, and explanations on the character, their powers, and their costumes and such.  So I could check these books out for about a month or something and then recheck them out later.  Trust me, when the kids start buying them from grocery stores or reading them at their school library they wont be able to stop and then they will look for comic book shops near them.  Then they will be sucked in and buy comics that aren't in movies, and eventually become 25 year old adults who talk about how they have to cut back on their 8 comics a week habit.
So to sum up my main ideas, 
sell comics in grocery stores
and  
have graphic novels or encyclopedia comics in school libraries.
 
Few more random ideas, maybe DVDs should have a free mini comic, like for Iron Man 2 they could have an Iron Man comic and/or a Thor comic.
And I agree with something someone posted after my post, but I edited it to agree with them, cartoon shows do more than movies because they are on all the time reminding the child.

Posted by Blurred View

I've always thought animated series did a ton more to sell comics and create comic fans than movies have ever and will ever do. How many people today cite X-Men: the Animated Series as a major factor in them getting into comics? How many people are now also citing the DCAU shows? Five to ten years from now, people may be citing Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes and Young Justice (side note: way to go making DCnU Teen Titans unrecognizable from YJ, DC) as one of the big reasons they got into comics. 
 
Movies? You go see one on a weekend and a day or two later it's out of your head. You won't think much about it again until the DVD comes out or you catch it on cable. Or the sequel comes out a couple years later. Very rarely does any movie, of any kind, actually stick with you or inspire you to check something out. Movies are nothing compared to something you catch on tv every week for months and await the next season.  
 
But still, I think movies do make some comic fans. Some. It's just that there's no sales spike from it, because these people are going to their nearest comic shop. They're going to Amazon and ordering trades. Current issues are irrelevant. People go to trade collections first because that makes more sense and they're more convenient. So there's no sales spike that month. If some these people go on to buy actual issues, it's not for weeks or months after the fact when they run out of trades.

Posted by BlackRoseTessa

my first thought was  the series heros did get people in to heros and comics . a good idea would be to have an advert at the start of the film telling people about the currunt comics and about trades and how they work , a mini guid how to get up to date on the comic version
Posted by Eyz
@Sekele said:
@Eyz:  The problem is that the companies are very willing to cancel a story if it doesn't sell good in the ongoing format, so a good story may get axed and never make it into TPB form   Don't you just love the American comic industry? 
Yeah..it always annoyed me...
At least some steady low-selling on-goings (Jonah Hex, Booster Gold) managed to never be cancelled due to high sales in TPB formats. (Jonah Hex particularly is a good example of a book that continues to sell pretty well collected..so much than we even had an original "graphic novel" format book published last year)
 
And others forgotten series get a second chance, like DC's CHASE, cancelled a decade ago and finally collected in a big omnibus format now.
(so did Marvel's Elektra and Mystique series from the early 2000s.)
Posted by nick7913

First of all, if people coming out of the movies were that interested in the characters, they would at least visit a LCS. How many people who know nothing about comics do you actually see entering your LCS? After that, it should be the employee at the LCS who takes on the burden of introducing the new reader into comics. Once you talk with someone for 5-10 minutes you can get a general sense of what he might like to read. It's not like anyone is coming out of X-Men: First Class and thinking "Wow, I want to read more about Angel Salvadore". They probably liked Magneto, Xavier, Shaw, Emma, Cyclops, Mystique or Beast. Or they thought Nightcrawler (sorry Azazel...) looked cool. There are comics out there about any of those characters out there and once you understand what that person liked most (action vs character development) you can find something to fit his taste.  
Same with Thor. Did you like the romance? Here's Thor the Mighty Avenger (also known as My Boyfriend Thor over on ifanboy)  . Did you enjoy the high concept ideas? How about Kirby Thor (if he doesn't have a problem with the old fashioned talking), The Authority or maybe Waid's FF? You can break OUT of the bubble presented in the movies if the person isn't necessarily interested in those characters. 
Did he read comic books as a child? Did he watch the Batman or X-men cartoon? People don't care if what you give them is the latest thing. They want to recreate part of the experience of watching the movie. Our job as comic book nerds is to find out which part of that experience they want to recreate and give them something similar. 
Finally, if we're talking about kids, give them a little credit. If you explain a little bit of it they'll see past the continuity (as long as the title you're giving them isn't continuity heavy right now - Yes, Geoff Johns, I'm looking at you.) and if they're interested they'll look it up. It's much easier nowadays than it used to be to get a condensed version of what's happened to a character. 
 
Still, the problem with the industry isn't solely in getting people in, but also managing to keep them interested. Unfortunately, that's the area where the Big Two fail the most. With multiple titles about the same character flooding the market, difficult to follow events and the constant wiping and rearranging the furniture to give the illusion of change, rather than actual growth and evolution, the plots quickly become stale and repetitive and the readers get bored and move away. If that doesn't change, it doesn't matter if you can get readers in from the movies.

Posted by Soldier zero
@HaHaManHV:  
Fox simply bought a franchise and now they're tearing it apart, there's a reason why Marvel is desperatly trying to buy all their properties back and resetting the various movie (like Spider-Man)
 
@Eyz
The oversea market is a tricky business, for the simple fact that different markets works on different principles. The number of copies needed to keep a title alive in the US might be too little for other markets. Also TBP might not sell that well oversea.
Edited by cattlebattle
@Soldier zero said:

@HaHaManHV:  
Fox simply bought a franchise and now they're tearing it apart, there's a reason why Marvel is desperatly trying to buy all their properties back and resetting the various movie (like Spider-Man)
 
@Eyz:  The oversea market is a tricky business, for the simple fact that different markets works on different principles. The number of copies needed to keep a title alive in the US might be too little for other markets. Also TBP might not sell that well oversea.

Tearing it apart??
 
Oh wow, I thought they were making good movies, my mistake
 
and by the by, how come all these idiots think Marvel has nothing to do with X-Films, they co produce them, Also it's not like Marvel studios is that great, they've made crappy and sub par movies
 
I think hating the X-men movies is a trendy thing to do,
 
Also, they were heavily involved with the Spider-man films too
Online
Edited by Green ankh

You know if there was an X book that worked off of the new film I'd buy it. I have not been able to get into the X books in years. But I liked very much how the film handled them.

Posted by sergyanime

I am kind of new to comics so I can tell you how it was for me and what lured me in as well as some friends and my personal experience.   
 
 
. I honestly got the idea of going out to read comics by marvel vs capcom 3 no joke. I have seen so many more people go to comics due to a video game then a movie because the game gives discussion hype and when your out nerded by a friend  or a member of a message board you want to be able to defend your self but you only know X amount about this character. It did a good job showing there first comic release and making characters seemed interesting but I know it's not like that for everyone.   
  
If movies are trying to push a new reader they are doing it wrong by not pushing the trades and explaining what a trade is. I know even a month into reading comics I had no Idea what a trade was just heard it thrown around a lot and I was like "are we trading comics"? At the start of the movie and then at the center credits there should be a plug for trades because that is where you are going to get people to say ok maybe I will. The start catches them when there filled with hype and the center gets them leaving with it on there mind. They already have to drive home why not go swing buy borders and see if they have Iron man volume 1 like it said in the advertisement.   
 
That is not the only issue though it is hard to keep up with comics during busy periods even you guys can't read every issue that comes out and it's your job imagine a casual person who just wants to get in who gets way to much spiderman a month to handle but wants to check it out. Then cost comes into play even with DC's drawing the line at 2.99 if I wanted to know everything happening in flash point just last week id pay for 4 with isn't to much but week after week of that for what at max is a 30 minute read an issue you start to eat at your other founds. That is if your just interested in knowing everything with flash point.  
 
I think that is where trades really shine  because its a one time buy for a full story at a lower pricish depending on where and when you pick it up with out having to buy and buy. It helps the average reader out because marvel doesn't give shoot outs to comic vine like it should with would be wonderful because without you guys id be lost with comics and I can only spread word of mouth so far.  
 
They need to just relook at there whole marketing as a whole re numbing isn't necessary we know how old these series are we expect an issue 1000 to come out we just want a good story that we can start on and a link to a web site that can give us the background we need if we want it.  

Posted by Wingfoot

Hi ! 
 
Comics inspire movies but movies rarely inspire comics. Comics readers go to the movie by a sort of necessity, "movie watchers" go to the comics by curiosity. This is not a well-balanced relationship. 
 
Hihane washte.
Posted by bingbangboom

The main problem with the lack of comic book sales is a direct result of poor and bad "Local Comic Book Stores". Period. 
 
Most stores are not inviting and cater to their most frequent clients, ignoring any new customers, even if they are new to comics or that store. I also hate to say it but there isn't a sense that most these places have the social skills needed to push comics. They are NERDS! Well most of them, they don't know how to great and talk to a customer. 
 
There are many times I go to a comic book store and they barely look up, just continue reading whatever they are doing or they are playing Magic. When all these comic book stores go out of business, they will be scratching their heads wondering what they did wrong. 
 
There also is not a big chain of comic book stores where these skills and selling techniques can be passed down. If anything it is standard book stores like Barnes & Noble that are feeding new readers. People don't even think about going to a LCS, they just go to Borders. Trades are also typically easier for new readers to get into because it is a collected story and they don't have to wait months for it to be completed. 
 
Digital is a new platform too, along with social media, that will make it easier for newer readers to just download it to their iPad or whatever. I still have problems with the digital price because I expect the value to be less considering I don't own the physical book. 
 
To my knowledge both Marvel & DC havn't really started to promote "collections" and trades in these apps, instead they just show the issues and make you buy each one. As a business, it would behoove them to just let you buy a "collected" version and save a couple of bucks. 
 
Don't blame the movies or the comic companies for the lack of sales though, they are dealing with this old system of issues and comic stores. Once comic book stores are basically finished there won't need to be single issue formats and books will go to collected forms. It is just the way it is because they will have to cater to the book market that will give them higher returns.

Posted by brc2000

I think the fact of the matter is only a small percentage of people who go to see movies are actually interested in reading at all, unless it's something like Harry Potter that gets a lot of hype. As an example nearly everyone in my university class liked the Dark Knight, but only two of us actually read Batman books regularly. Maybe if comics got the sort of Harry Potter hype things could improve, but it's unlikely, and to be honest I'm alright with comics not being as popular as they could be. Makes me feel cooler for it.

Posted by Xenozoic Shaman

Comics seem like a large commitment compared to the occasional Harry Potter book.  Fortunately, I'm all about commitment.  That's right ladies. ^_~

Posted by asparuh

It's like when someone asks "have you read the book?" and gets the answer "baaah, I'll wait for the movie".  
 
Later you ask "did you read the book?" and you get "what for? I just saw the movie!"
Posted by elayem98

As i said in the other post by babs 
"...i have spent literally about $2000 on graphic novels since fall 2008, having never read a comic before then, all because i saw the dark knight." 
and yes it was a little confusing at first, but I didnt care I just kept reading, and if I didnt know a character I would just go to dc.wikia.com and look them up(this was before I knew of comicvine)

Posted by kennybaese

I think assuming that people are going to walk into a comic shop after going to see Thor or The Dark Knight is assuming a bit much. They're way more likely to walk into the Barnes and Noble next door to the theater and buy the trade that they just rereleased with art from the movie on the cover because it's got Ryan Reynold's face on the front (this is probably selling people a little bit short, but you know, it is what it is.)

So, DC and Marvel need to do a better job of marketing a specific trade that works well as a "jumping on point" for new readers and make some kind of point in the introduction to the book about the differences between comic movies and the actual comics themselves. The companies want new readers, but still play way too much inside baseball in the process.

Posted by Sobe Cin

I have been a fan of comics since I was kid. Almost 32 now. And I remember when I was kid that the Punisher had come out in the late 80's with Dolph Lundgren. I saw that movie and hated it, which probably is biggest reason I am not fan of the character today. I have seen Thomas Jane's version and Punisher: War Journel. And though I liked War Journal as a movie- I still have no interest in reading about the punisher in comic book form. 
 
Daredevil- Loved the movie- Comic book isn't anywhere close. Elektra is the same way. I would read an Elektra comic book that was closer to the movie, than the current Elektra in the Daredevil universe. She just seemed more likable. 
 
Now take Batman for instance, I don't read the comics, I don't even collect but I know all about him because of the Animated Series- but that never drew me in to reading the comic- neither did the Dark Knight. Continuety was always a factor- but I will watch an animated series as well as movies about the guy. But I don't want his books. 
 
The same could be said for Iron Man, Hulk, Fantastic Four and Spider-Man. Loved the movies, I don't want to read the comics. 
 
Now I do read X-Men- and I have watched all of the movies. And funny thing is, after the Last Stand (But Mostly from Messiah Complex) I have been reading the X-Men pretty religiously since 2006. I love the books. But I also pick up the trades of older storylines. Either from Barnes & Noble, Amazon or the Library. I want to emerse myself and that's because of Secrets Wars way back in 1984- I was 5 years old when I saw this beautiful red beam shoot across the page. I had no idea what it was at the time, but then I learned it was Cyclops, and I was hooked on the X-Men.  
 
Later on I saw Pryde of the X-Men. Had seen the Spider-Man and his amazing Friends. But the other thing that got my addicted to comics was in elementary school when marvel released trading cards of their characters. And this truly what jumpstarted a fervor for comic books. I wanted to read them, collect the cards, watch the cartoons. But the card collecting died out over time. They went from being a novelty to something to artistic and expensive to buy.  
 
But trading cards should be something that DC and Marvel should think about. Release a new trading card series. But don't use images from the movies, take the characters from the comics and invest in it. And continue making them. But make them affordible, for collectors and kids alike.

Edited by The Impersonator
@PeteyParker: If you haven't seen the Dark Knight movie, then yes he died.
Posted by MrMazz

For me its a bang for my buck comparison. 2.99 is a lot for a little comic which is why im more of a Trade Paper Back fan since my local comic shop sells them for about 10 15 bucks .

Posted by PeteyParker
@The Impersonator:  LOL ! No dude i was just making fun of the way he typed it. It's a grammatical era.......
Posted by PeteyParker
@The Impersonator:  Well there WAS one but i guess he fixed it........ :/
Posted by Doctor!!!!!

This is exactly how I came to the world of comics, Fox messed with my mind and made me all confused with hero and villian origins. I learned everything I know from comics from the internet, thats not how people should learn!

Posted by maxicere

If you make an horrible movie ...

Posted by kingoftheworld

Damn comicvine. I start hating you and you start publishing articles like this. Im back now.
Posted by The Mast

People don't want to read as much as they want to have shiny images.
 
What's the confusion? It's that simple. Readers are outnumbered by those who'd rather watch a C.G.I. ridden movie or Jersey Shore.
 
-The Mast

Posted by Larkin1388
@walkingcarpet said:

I think assuming that people are going to walk into a comic shop after going to see Thor or The Dark Knight is assuming a bit much. They're way more likely to walk into the Barnes and Noble next door to the theater and buy the trade that they just rereleased with art from the movie on the cover because it's got Ryan Reynold's face on the front (this is probably selling people a little bit short, but you know, it is what it is.)

So, DC and Marvel need to do a better job of marketing a specific trade that works well as a "jumping on point" for new readers and make some kind of point in the introduction to the book about the differences between comic movies and the actual comics themselves. The companies want new readers, but still play way too much inside baseball in the process.

Well put.
Posted by Evpraksiya

Movies, insult for fan, 2h of divertissement for mass people. Of course this won't sell. Sh*tty things..

Posted by The Mast

My first issue of a comic was Daredevil #187 when I was six. Early '90s.
 
I don't buy all this catering to people like they're incapable of jumping right in. They are and they're lazy.
 
-The Mast

Posted by ComicMan24

IMO movies are just not enough to leave a lasting impression on the viewers. Something like a TV series or a cartoon would do a much better job in order to attract new readers. Plus comics are still regarded by many as something for kids and make fun of those who read. I believe that this is an important reason as to why a lot people don't start reading comics.

Posted by Sekele
@Evpraksiya said:
Movies, insult for fan, 2h of divertissement for mass people. Of course this won't sell. Sh*tty things..
Read the article  
It's the movies that sell much better than the comics  
 
Even Green Lantern with all it's negative reviews seems to have made quite a huge buck  
 
The real problem are the comics themselves  
Convoluted soap-operas that should have ended 20 years ago 
Posted by KDP2

I think you're underestimating movie fans trying to get into comics.  I recently didn't get brought back into comics until after I saw The Dark Knight.  Granted, I was a big fan of Batman before the movie and heavily read the comics up until about 2005. (which is strange that I stopped reading then because I loved Batman Begins a lot.)  But I believe that people could get into comics if they went in with an open mind.  Like when I started reading Batman again I was slightly confused on why Dick Grayson was wearing the Batman mantle.  I just figured that something happened to Bruce Wayne and continued reading the issue with no problems.  I later then did some research and found out that Bruce Wayne was initially killed by Darkseid.  There, end of confusion just by doing a little research.  Of course after that I later went on to read other story arcs and graphic novels to catch me up to speed on everything that went on and would later find out that Bruce wasn't dead at all and either was Jason Todd, etc. etc.   
 
See, if people were really that interested after viewing a movie, they would pick a comic series and ask their friends or do some research to find out what previously happened in the universe.  But I believe that movies should help boost the sales of comics because I happen to be in that category.  If it wasn't for The Dark Knight, I probably wouldn't be reading comics again.  Obviously I'm wrong, though, if comic book sales are down....

Posted by cambot3000

I feel like you may be over thinking this a bit. I started reading comics after seeing the first Tim Burton Batman movie. I went to a comic shop and bought the Batman comic I thought had the coolest cover. I didn't worry about being confused by ongoing storylines, because I figured it would start to make sense if I kept reading.

My guess is that the people who are likely to stick with comics (rather than just picking up a couple of issues after seeing a movie) feel the same way. If come away from a comic book movie impressed enough to invest in the comics themselves, you're probably not going to be put off by having to learn a bit about a title or character's history.

Posted by goldenkey

I think the best book to really grab new readers would be the KILLING JOKE.  It's a Great one-shot and it was one of the first that I bought and it's still in my top 5.   It shows that comics are for a mature reader.
Posted by labarith
@Sekele said:
Seriously, the industry has basically killed itself with all the endless ongoing plots   There's a reason why stories were mostly stand-alone during the Golden and Silver Age 
More or less, this. 
 
You need stand alone plots that go well together in a trade.  But it's a lot easier to have 24 or so pages of talking heads doing jack %$^(&*)(,  
 
The price also hurts.  If you have to choose between a deluxe transformer and... 2 comic books... which would you choose as a kid?  Hell, as an adult?
Posted by turoksonofstone

Movies and Hollywood are Overrated. Period. I honestly think Cartoons are the best Vehicle outside of actual comics to create new fans.

Posted by daredevil21134
@turoksonofstone said:
Movies and Hollywood are Overrated. Period. I honestly think Cartoons are the best Vehicle outside of actual comics to create new fans.
Yup,Under The Red Hood the movie seemed to help Jason Todd
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