Axel-In-Charge: Facing the 'Divided' Marvel NOW! Future
Conventions | Image Comics content manager David Brothers explains why this year’s Comic-Con International was a great convention, pointing out that there’s a lot more to the event than movies and television, and there’s a lot more to comics than the Big Two: “Marvel and DC are comics, just like the other publishers, and they make some great ones when they let the creators do their own thing. But at this point? You can’t treat them like the entirety of the comics industry, or even two companies that can dictate the future of comics. They run the movies, and that’s cool, but running comics? It’s just not true any more. Image in particular outsells Marvel in the book market as far as trade paperbacks go, and that holds true in the comics market lately, too. That’s no coincidence. People enjoy Marvel and DC, but they want more than Marvel and DC.” [io9.com]
We’ve written before about Larime Taylor, creator of A Voice in the Dark, a Top Cow series, set at the perfectly named Slaughter University. The comic is infused with satire and black humor, so it’s no surprise some of that sensibility seeped into the trailer for the first trade paperback.
Narrated by Jon Bailey, doing his best Don LaFontaine, the trailer acknowledges Taylor’s disability — he was born with arthrogryposis, and draws using his mouth — and provides a solid overview of the book’s premise before going in for the kill (so to speak): “… featuring such pop-culture commercial kryptonite like a female protagonist, realistically drawn women, persons of color and a focus on character and dialogue over meaningless action and gratuitous sex. … Come on, this book would sell a lot more copies if it had more explosions and boobs.”
As someone who has covered the comic book industry to some degree since 1999 and been reading comics since 1977, I’ve been audience to a plethora of appeals by creators to support their projects. But none has caught my attention quite like that of A Voice in the Dark creator Larime Taylor, who draws with his mouth.
Earlier this month, in a Tumblr post, Taylor recounted how in 2012 he embarked on a pilot project through Kickstarter for A Voice in the Dark in the hopes he could ultimately connect the project to a publisher. In 2013 he succeeded, with it landing at Top Cow’s Minotaur Press imprint. But unfortunately, sales are lagging. He logically assumes part of the sales struggle is that he is an unknown name and that some potential consumers are less inclined to read a black-and-white comic.
Both factors are true. I’m ashamed to admit there are multiple independent comics that are released on a monthly basis that never catch my attention. I was surprised that this one in particular hadn’t, given Taylor’s unique talents — as well as the fact he was interviewed in late August by Comic Book Resources.