"Rowdy" Roddy Piper Reported Dead at 61
• One of the owners of Earth-2 Comics and Collectibles in Sherman Oaks, Calif., says the economy hasn’t hit the store as hard as a Los Angeles Daily News article led us to believe. “There is no 20% drop in yearly revenue at Earth-2,” Carr D’Angelo said in the comments at The Beat. “2009 is actually up slightly from 2008. We’re not hurting. But that wouldn’t have fit into the series theme.”
D’Angelo said that while sales of many titles are down, the store is selling more trade paperbacks. [The Beat]
• In the wake of the layoff last week of Pantheon Books Publisher Janice Goldklang, Pat Johnson has been named executive vice president, publishing director, Alfred A. Knopf and Pantheon. Dan Frank remains as editorial director. [Publishers Weekly]
• Warner Bros. Entertainment, parent company of DC Comics, reportedly is asking all of its departments to cut their budgets by 10 percent — a move that could save Time Warner tens of millions of dollars, and result in layoffs of more than 100 employees.
According to The Associated Press, Warner Bros. executives have been looking at proposals from “all units,” including its theatrical, home vide0, television production, and consumer products divisions.
Although DC Comics isn’t mentioned in the article, it is a subsidiary of Warner Bros. Entertainment, alongside Warner Bros. Pictures, Warner Bros. Television, Warner Home Video and others. [The Associated Press]
• Veteran retailer Ilan Strasser takes a grim look at the economy, the output from Marvel and DC, and the looming specter of the $4 monthly: “Marvel and DC have done everything possible over the years to reduce the number of customers walking into our stores. They have raised prices far too much far too often; I have heard some recent scuttlebutt that they are currently considering raising all their regular books to the $3.99 price point their annuals and specials — and doing this during a terrible time for consumers across the board. I cannot imagine a scenario where mass numbers of people don’t stop buying new, monthly comics if Marvel does this and DC (as they always do) follows suit.” [ICv2.com]
• Blogger Heidi Meeley puts comics prices into jolting perspective by comparing them to the costs of everyday necessities, such as clothes and water. The cost of the average monthly is equivalent of three cans of generic vegetable-beef soup? Food or comics, indeed. [Comics Fairplay, via 4thletter]
• A dealer in Bakersfield, Calif., is putting his 175,000-comic collection in a yard sale this weekend to get word out that he’s open for business. [KGET.com]