Saturday, May 09, 2009

The Comic Purge

So we have had rain forever where I live in Baltimore and since I got back from my vacation I barely got the yard cut and now it is even a worse jungle. So after work today (Friday) I had to run an errand or two and then cut my yard. This is are a long preamble why I decided to do a commentary for today’s post as opposed to some other things I was planning to do and hopefully may get to before the weekend is done.

As I have mentioned before my vacation was a break from comics on a weekly basis and instead of missing them I enjoyed the break. Also my hard cover and trade collection is starting to overwhelm me from both a space standpoint and from a reading standpoint. I really want to sit down and read a lot of these great hard covers that I have only scanned. The trades are mostly stuff that I will read and pass on, but still I have tons of stuff to read.

Another reason that has caused me to look to purge my list as deep as possible is the $4 price point becoming the norm for all comics and not just the independents. If I’m getting 25 comics a week that was $75 retail at $3 a pop at $4 a pop it is $100, that is a pretty big jump in price.
Now a purge for me is an attempt to get my overall list down to 100 books on my list at anytime and it is always a moving target with new books and new series starting every week. Diamond changing their minimal order has helped to eliminate some stuff and publishers that are too weak to survive have help me to ignore some of their products.

My recent cuts were Thunderbolts, Unknown Solider (a well done book about Uganda which while tragic I have no real interest in), Red Mass for Mars – an Image title that appears to have stopped coming out, Gemini – same deal, Groom Lake from IDW as it was great art, but the story was not amusing me; Prototype from Wildstorm (again good book, but will probably read better as a trade), Salem’s daughter from Zenoscope (I’ve grown tired of Zenoscope’s products) and Rest from Devil’s Due – a good book, but showing up once in a blue moon.

In looking over my list I’m ready to drop Booster Gold after the next issue comes out. It was a fun series, but it should have been a mini-series, Titans after Deathtrap – that book is in turmoil and with Titans, Teen Titans and Vigilante have to go also. Uncanny X-Men has to bite the dust yet again and after the next issue of Ultimate Spider-Man that book has run its course and I’m not getting into the latest re-launch of that Universe.

My list stands at around 125 and of that at least 40 are mini-series and as those end I plan to be more judicious going forward in what I order and keep on my list. I’m very tempted to drop Dark and New Avengers as that just cuts me free from a lot of the Marvel Universe. I’m done with the X-Universe except for X-Factor and an occasional look at a new series here and there, but the hard core titles for Marvel right now are Daredevil (who is losing Brubaker), Captain America, Thor, Iron Fist (which is morphing right now) and Ghost Rider (which is losing Jason Aaron soon). But one thing Marvel and DC have over some of the smaller companies, when they launch a book or mini-series it almost always comes out, very seldom does it fade away and then because of creator issues, not monetary issues. DC has a larger core of titles that centers on the Batman titles, Green Lantern, JSA, Secret Six, Madame Xanadu, Scalped, Hellblazer, House of Mystery and Fables.

Companies like Devil’s Due, Zenoscope, Platinum Studios and their ilk are too hard to follow. I root for the little guy, but I refuse to now invest in a book that may never show up or comes out for one issue. Dark Horse is solicited Zero Killer again, a book I liked, but I’m not going their again. If you cannot publish you book in a timely manner (and that does not have to be monthly) then call me when the trade comes out and maybe I will buy it.

If you are Marvel and DC and are going to do stupid stuff, don’t expect me to follow those books and call me when you have you act together. Too often I have hung onto a series waiting for it to get better, no more, I will drop more regular series then ever and wait until I read about a new direction and creative team before I jump book on.

Anyway this is a long ramble to say that due to desire to devote more time to things other then weekly comics, the $4 (ridiculous for the big 2) price point and the fact that we are in an economy which is going downhill, the comic purge will be ongoing.

What that also means is that what I will read will be stuff that I think I will enjoy more. Like this week Irredeemable, Life and Times of Savior 28, and The Mighty (all examinations of a Superman type character) have been great books to read.

My list is still huge next week, but I can tell you that you will see more titles drop then you have from me before and I hope to have a week here and there with just 20 books or maybe less because 25 to 35 is too much and I want to read all the great books on my book shelves.

1 comment:

  1. In the early-mid 90's, back when books were $1 - $1.50, my target for a months spending was $40. Didn't always make it but that bought most of the Marvel's and a couple of DC.

    It's a sad state when it's over $100 for the same amount of books.

    Between price hikes and general over production it's impossible to read it all anymore.