The end of DC Comics coming soon? Let’s analyze the signs

by Mike W

FS-JUSTICE-LEAGUE-1-variant-Ngu-copy-1-198x300 The end of DC Comics coming soon? Let's analyze the signsThe writing on the wall about this rumored news has been in the works for quite some time. Specifically, the end for DC Comics. It has been speculated since last February. This comes from Ethan Van Sciver, who claimed it in the article from   Cosmicbook.News.  Sciver is a twenty-seven year veteran of the comic book industry who has worked on comic titles such as DC’s Green Lantern.  Comics, in general, or even having your own shop is not exactly a cash-counting lifestyle. You could even say that pandemic makes things worse for everyone in the comic world. Either way, DC Comics seems to be in a perilous situation where they are choosing to “abandon ship before it sinks”.

What’s going on at DC Comics?

The article from Cosmicbbook.News reveals many speculative rumors on the future of DC Comics and what could be Jim-Lee-X-Men-poster-198x300 The end of DC Comics coming soon? Let's analyze the signspossibly happening in the near future.

Firstly, the management changes in the last couple of months to a year have shown a cause for concern for the comic world. The recent removal of Dan Didio from the company was the first sign of the end.  Didio was the co-publisher along with Jim Lee for DC Comics. After ten years as the co-publisher, news broke out that Dan stepped down from his position altogether. Rumors of an alternate reason for his exit then began to crop up. People think he was fired from the company as a cost-cutting and restructuring event within the company.

Jim Lee exiting?

Now we focus our attention on Jim Lee. DC Comics valued Lee as a valuable piece of the Infinite-Crisis-5-Jim-Lee-194x300 The end of DC Comics coming soon? Let's analyze the signscompany as he made it to co-publisher for comics. Lee, a legendary artist known by many comic fans has worked on many properties, including Marvel, DC Comics, and Image Comics. Due to his reputation as an artist, DC Comics promoted him and found no reason to fire him unless it was necessary. Currently, there is a rumor that Jim Lee is leaving the company. There is no clear reason why, but there is a belief that he may either retire or start his own comic book publishing company.

 

 

Justice-League-movie-2-300x187 The end of DC Comics coming soon? Let's analyze the signs

Where are the new guys?

One huge rumor that DC Comics is sizing down is the news about how the comics will be delivered going forward. Firstly, the company does not appear to want to take on any chances of any new characters or properties. Meaning, the company will continue to push out titles with characters such as Batman, Superman, Justice League, and maybe the occasional one-shot issue. This is sad to hear, as they are clearly falling behind on promoting new characters for comic fans. This practice could potentially draw readers away from seeing the same characters over and over again. I want to make this clear in that I am a fan of Batman and Superman like everyone else. It does get a little tiring though, DC Comics not putting out new titles.

Haven-Comics-exterior-300x225 The end of DC Comics coming soon? Let's analyze the signs

Wrapping it up

Lastly, and this rumor is very alarming. There is high speculation that DC Comics will move away from distributing comics into shops and conventions. Their vision and focus are on the digital comic book market and trade paper pack-size volumes or larger anthology-sized books where the audience is mass market such as Amazon or a bookstore market. This news is very sad for collectors.

 

Please let me know your thoughts about these rumors. We can all hope that this news will not come true, but time will tell and everything will be revealed eventually.

Haven-Comics-shelves-300x169 The end of DC Comics coming soon? Let's analyze the signs

FOOTER_Comic3-scaled The end of DC Comics coming soon? Let's analyze the signs

 

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28 comments

InkdNXS22 November 23, 2020 - 9:24 am

Maybe they should have kept “politics” out of the comics. The good old days are GONE. Buy up those books now before the cooties finish off the economy.

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Mike W November 26, 2020 - 12:02 am

This news, at the moment, is speculated is quite disappointing. Why do you think “politics” plays a big part in comics?

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eprise01 November 23, 2020 - 10:16 am

I grew up in the 60’s and 70’s and was always a Marvel fan. I had first issues of all the Marvel titles at that time and unfortunately when my mom passed and Dad moved us to Mississippi, where he grew up, he tossed ALL my comics AND baseball cards! Needless to say, I was totally pissed but I was only 13 so what could I do? Anywho, I did occasionally read Superman, Superboy, Justice League and occasionally other DC comics. Even now, at 67, I still mainly read the Marvel titles and really loved the Ultimate Universe titles but I’ve also gotten to where I do buy and collect some of the DC titles. Recently I purchased the DK III series, in the comics AND the hardback editions as well as some of the other recent titles. I’ve always love Crisis on Infinite Earths and have bought ALL the Crisis titles that have come out, just to keep up with things. I do hope that DC is not on its way out as a comic book publisher. I’ve never truly supported DC like some have, but I’ve at least tried. I’ve enjoyed Frank Miller’s vision of Batman, the New Teen Titans when they first appeared, the various Crisis titles (as I’ve already mentioned), the Jack Kirby titles and even those books that Stan Lee did for the ‘opposition’, and occasionally a few other titles in the DC line, but the company would be missed, not only by me but I’m sure thousands of other DC fans. If they do decide to do the larger formats I’m sure that there will still be many DC fans that will stick with them but I’ll miss the monthly titles that I do follow these days. Perhaps that is why Marvel continues to ‘break ground’ these days, the diversity of titles available to the public, along with the Marvel Cinematic Universe, that propels Marvel to continue today. The competition between the two companies has always kept the comic book world alive and IF DC does decide to close shop, they will be truly missed.

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Mike W November 26, 2020 - 12:04 am

Hey man, always nice to a story of a fellow comic lover. Marvel comics continue to push out titles and accepting the risks of potential failures. Anything DC Comics can do, in your opinion, to make a comeback?

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ivangreebka November 23, 2020 - 10:17 am

On my Comics Facebook group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/TheComicsGroup) we have been watching and tracking this topic and other articles concerning this topic. I think that we would lose a huge chunk of Americana, of our culture if we lose comics and comic shops. But all things change, all things evolve. If they don’t, they will most certainly fade into oblivion. That having been said, I think if DC would just commit to writing quality stories with creative writing and jaw-dropping art that truly illustrated and supported the storyline, then that would be the first step in keeping the form and the culture alive. New, truly original, characters are a must.

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Mike W November 26, 2020 - 12:05 am

It is quite sad if the news does come true for DC Comics. Do you think it is a huge loss for the comics world for DC Comics to stop printing paper comics?

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steven Centonzo November 23, 2020 - 11:18 am

What happens to back issue value if there are no new issues to generate interest? asking as a collector with 186 short boxes bagged and boarded

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Mike W November 26, 2020 - 12:07 am

I hate to answer that question as we all have an idea of what happens to those back issues. What are you going to do with short boxes of comics, specifically of DC books, if they stop printing paper issues?

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David Bitterbaum November 23, 2020 - 11:57 am

Ethan Van Sciver is a hateful human being and I doubt many mainstream creators keep in touch with him after all the bridges he’s burned. I don’t trust any rumors he states.

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Mike W November 26, 2020 - 12:08 am

That is an interesting comment you have made. I really hope what Ethan is speculating is incorrect and false. Do you have anything to confirm his rumors are potentially false?

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David Bitterbaum November 29, 2020 - 9:57 pm

Yes, there are articles about how Ethan is not a trustworthy person and in fact quite mean. If you read an article like this one you’ll get an idea:

https://www.thedailybeast.com/comicsgate-how-an-anti-diversity-harassment-campaign-in-comics-got-uglyand-profitable

If you google Bleedingcool’s writing on EVS that will provide info too.

He seems to be mostly cut-off from mainstream comics due to his behavior and mean views. I don’t trust him at all.

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Mike W November 30, 2020 - 8:36 pm

Thanks for the reference. I will be sure to read into it more.
So you think DC Comics is not ending and believe 2021 could be a turnaround year?

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David Bitterbaum November 30, 2020 - 10:49 pm

I don’t think DC Comics is ending. Just maybe changing to some degree. I would hope 2021 is good for it!

Mike W December 1, 2020 - 10:27 pm

Thanks for the input. Your comments imply you’re a big fan of the publisher. What about Marvel?

algonwolf November 23, 2020 - 12:37 pm

Is this surprising to anyone? If the MCU was not as successful as it is would Marvel still be around? The DCU continues to make movies that do not capture the movie-going public’s attention, and dollars (Wonder Woman, Joker being the exceptions). It is those dollars, not comic sales, that fund the publishing arms of Marvel and DC.

– Readership in general (books, newspapers) has declined dramatically, causing loss of buyers.
– The current “variant cover” glut artificially inflates the number of books sold (similar to the gimmick covers of the 90s)
– The “second print” is not for those that missed the first print, it is for those that bought the first and must buy the second.
– Stories are no longer targeted at “youth” thus discouraging new, young readers
– Artwork has become semi-pornographic turning off parents wanting to buy books for their kids
– “Event” style stories across multiple titles discourages casual readers
– Re-boots after re-boots have served as more of a jumping off point then a jumping on point
– People want to be entertained, rather than make an effort to entertain themselves…reading is too much work

So, I say again, is it any surprise that DC is on the verge of collapse? The real surprise is that it hasn’t yet collapsed. What happens when the movie-going public gets tired of the MCU and gross ticket sales slump? How long will it take for The Mouse to abandon ship and Marvel goes the way of DC?

And no, I couldn’t have done better. No, I don’t know how to turn the industry around. Are Disney+ and HBO a start? Are these how new character will be introduced and market-tested? Are these small screen the comics of the future? Netflix (Marvel) and the CW (DC) seemed to be somewhat successful.

I hope that DC can do something to turn things around, but they better do it fast.

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Mike W November 26, 2020 - 12:10 am

Good comments on DC and Marvel Comics. My question is; do you think the start of DC Comics ending paper distribution is something other publishers will fall in line the the future?

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Chris J November 23, 2020 - 6:33 pm

Well, lots of speculation.The only evidence we have of any future print publications of DC seems to be the two month Future State (whatever) event. It’s simply more of DC trying to juice up its spaghetti. Their product is spaghetti (superheroes) and they continually provide different sauces to hide the fact…that it’s all spaghetti. I can say with equanimity that should DC fold, reduce output significantly, or even continue makes very little difference to me at this point. For the past several years I’ve spent less and less on comic books in general, relying more on purchases from used bookstores, comic book sales of back issues, using the library, or taking advantage of having access to a comic bookstore as my own lending library. $3.99 for a comic book. 15 minutes entertainment. No fucking thanks. At least we still have Image, Marvel, Boom, Dynamite, Valiant, Dark Horse, etc. I’m not worried per se about the future of the medium; other countries still have active fandoms and readers.

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Mike W November 26, 2020 - 12:12 am

The quality of what DC Comics has been putting out recently has not been good. Do you think the comic world will be better off without DC Comics commanding the market share as it is currently?

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Kyle Jackson November 24, 2020 - 1:02 pm

How will that affect DC printed book values? And are marvel and the independent book publishers in the same boat?

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Mike W November 26, 2020 - 12:13 am

I cannot honestly answer that question, since the rumors are not confirmed.
It is hard to value what would the value of DC books would be if they stop printing paper issues.
Do you think the value of DC Comics will go down if they go digital?

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Kyle Jackson November 27, 2020 - 2:29 pm

If they go full digital I believe people will lose interest in DC, Marvel or any publisher because… to me that is called cartoons technically. Just without the animation. I like holding the printed paper but that’s how I grew up. I have never liked reading for pleasure on a digtial screen since I have to do it all day for work just to survive. But that is just me.

I believe printed books will skyrocket in value if and when they decide to stop publishing printed comic volumes. I can see them moving to printing exclusively collected volume Trade Paperbacks first to extend print life if anything. Printing costs and waning reader interest make all of this inevitable.

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Mike W November 27, 2020 - 3:22 pm

I understand your comparison. Sometimes, when I read manga, I get curious to see how it translates to an animated tv show.
That is a good theory on the value of printed books going up since it will possibly be discontinued.
I am intrigued you brought up the possibility of them bringing out Trade Paperbacks. Is it really more profitable for them than printed comics?

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Thomas L Bunch November 24, 2020 - 3:39 pm

I never thought it would happen. I stopped reading comics years ago. I think the greed of the big publishers turned off a lot of readers: multiple versions of characters, mashups,”retcons”.It all became confusing and meaningless

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Mike W November 26, 2020 - 12:14 am

That is good comments to make about these comic publishers. Any ideas on how to fix the comic market?

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Jay Pierce November 25, 2020 - 10:03 am

I used to collect comics, but now all I want is thw trade paperbacks cause of more bang for the buck and my money is limited.

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Mike W November 26, 2020 - 12:15 am

I have not personally sold paperbacks to make a profit, but I have heard it can command bigger profit margins overalls, in some cases.
Do you stick to Marvel and DC paperbacks or do you consider all publishers?

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William Callahan November 25, 2020 - 2:55 pm

if that happened it would be a massive unfortunate event. I understand this is a business decision BUT the love of the physical comic book is a love decision by collectors, without whom the entire industry wouldn’t exist. I read somewhere that in the early 20th century that comic books and comics were a poor man literature source; which equated/equates to affordability to the masses. Making a product that can be consumed by the majority (and yes there are many more persons in the world NOT wealthy or rich) becomes a source of wealth; continued funding. So in my estimation killing DC comic books production is a POOR business decision. The late congressman John Lewis said it best, “I’d rather be a pilot light than a firecracker. Firecracker will supply one brilliant but brief light source, while a pilot light supplies heat and food for years”

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Mike W November 26, 2020 - 12:17 am

I understand your point and it would be an unfortunate end to a tradition for many individuals. Do you think DC Comics can be profitable by selling paper issues, rather than going digital?

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