subscriptions Archives - Robot 6 @ Comic Book Resources

Comics A.M. | Exhausted, Stan Lee cuts short appearances

Stan Lee

Creators | Stan Lee will cut his visit to this weekend’s Dallas Comic-Con short and has canceled his appearance at Monday’s Hero Complex Film Festival. A spokesman for POW! Entertainment said Lee, 89, is distraught and depressed after the death of Arthur Lieberman, one of his business associates at POW!, and is also fatigued after multiple appearances promoting The Avengers. Lee will appear Saturday at the Dallas Comic-Con, but not on Sunday. [Hero Complex]

Publishing | Todd Allen notes that DC Comics has dropped some titles from its subscription service, including Aquaman, Batwoman and Swamp Thing. The move seems to be motivated by low sales in that channel, and Allen takes that as evidence DC is being cost-conscious. They are offering substitute series to subscribers, but it’s not clear what the logic is behind the substitutions. DC has also just launched a web store that sells lots of merch and a handful of graphic novels. [The Beat]

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The Robot 6 Holiday Gift-Giving Guide, Part 2

Harvey Comics Classics Vol. 1

Yesterday we kicked off our holiday gift-giving guide, where we asked creators like Jim McCann, Matt Kindt and more for gift suggestion and what they’d want to receive this year. Today we’re back with six more creators, and we asked them the same questions:

1. What comic-related gift or gifts would you recommend giving this year, and why?
2. What gift (comic or otherwise) is at the top of your personal wish list, and why?

So without further ado, let the joy continue …

Jeff Parker

1. If you have young children, you can give them hours of quality time with any of Dark Horse’s Harvey Comics collections. My kids have been poring through them repeatedly. I’ll be following up with old back issues of Casper, Dot, Richie Rich and Hot Stuff from the local comics shops; they’re always very cheap.

2. I would not sneeze at getting that Donald Duck: Lost in the Andes volume from Fantagraphics.

Jeff Parker is the writer of Hulk, Thunderbolts and the webcomic Bucko.

Tim Seeley

All-Star Superman

1. I’m a firm believer in buying comics for everyone on your list, even if they aren’t an avid fan. Make ‘em a fan! All-Star Superman for the superhero fan, Dungeons & Dragons from IDW for the gamer, Habibi for the sophisticated reader, and, of course, my Hack/Slash Omnibi for the horror fan. Or, if you’re planning on dropping a bit more, might I suggest an iPad, loaded with comics apps?

2. I want the collected version of the web strip OGLAF, which I thoroughly enjoy. I wouldn’t mind a CS Moore Witchblade statue to inspire me while I write.

Tim Seeley seems to be all over the place lately, whether it’s writing the new Bloodstrike series from Extreme or Witchblade for Top Cow, drawing issues of Marvel’s Generation Hope, or working on his own creations like Hack/Slash and Jack Kraken. There’s a good chance I forgot something, but you can follow him on Twitter to learn more.

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The Robot 6 Holiday Gift-Giving Guide, Part 1

‘Tis the season for decking those halls, trimming those trees, lighting the menorah and, of course, figuring out what to buy for your friends and family. To help give you some ideas, we reached out to a few comic creators, asking them:

1. What comic-related gift or gifts would you recommend giving this year, and why?
2. What gift (comic or otherwise) is at the top of your personal wish list, and why?

We’ve gotten back a bunch of suggestions, which we’ll run between now and the end of the week. So let the merriment commence …

Jim McCann

1. Exclusive 2011 Janet Lee Holiday Ornaments
Every year, Janet does about 12 ornaments, three sets of four. This year, she has done Hipster Animals, Scary Toys and Art Nouveau Angels. They are signed and dated, and at the end of the season, that’s it! She stops making them. I’ve been collecting them since 2007, and now our tree is almost completely filled with Janet’s art. You can buy them exclusively through her Etsy shop.

Oh, and if you’re REALLY nice, she MAY have a very limited Dapper Men ornament or two. Just ask!

2. This year, for myself, I’m going with a mix of Blu-Rays (portable Blu-Ray player, please, Santa!) and books. But the thing I’m REALLY excited for is the hardcover edition of the Complete Ripley novels, by Patricia Highsmith. Most people only know of Ms. Highsmith through The Talented Mr. Ripley (and classic film lovers through Strangers On a Train). There were actually five Tom Ripley novels, and the collection looks amazing. Why these books? My spouse recently Tweeted a quote from John Lithgow that struck me as a writer: “Duality, duplicity, truth and deception, good becoming bad and vice-versa are crucial elements of great storytelling.” Highsmith was and remains an unsung hero of mastering that, so I hope I learn something in the process!

Happy Holidays from the Dapper Lariosa-McCann household!

Jim McCann is the writer of Return of the Dapper Men and its upcoming sequel, Marvel Zombies Christmas Carol, Hawkeye:Blindspot and the upcoming Mind The Gap.

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Would you buy a digital comics subscription?

whether I like it or not...

The headline on Darrell Etherington’s article says it all: “Comics Should Jump on the iOS Subscription Bandwagon.” His argument is a consumer-based one: He has the apps, but at $1 to $3 a pop, comics are too expensive a habit for him, so he proposes a subscription model that basically gives the reader a 50% discount for paying up front—$25 for 12 issues, say. Etherington thinks that would boost readership, but it could also carry some risks. For one thing, readers who are accustomed to getting print magazine subscriptions for $10 or less per year won’t find that price point attractive (although magazine subscriptions do seem to be more expensive on the iPad, so the price is getting pushed up anyway). And in an industry notorious for delays, 12 issues does not necessarily equal a year’s worth of comics. And for superhero comics (which I think is what Etherington is talking about here), following a single series won’t necessarily give the reader a satisfying experience. Dropping three dollars here and four bucks there for you weekly comics is one thing; lining up $200 worth of annual subscriptions (even though that includes a hefty discount) just to be able to follow the events in a fictional universe could prove to be a troubling reality check to some readers.

Etherington quotes Jesus Hates Zombies creator Stephen Lindsay, who divides the comics audience into three groups: “those inside the industry who buy comics to support one another, the casual reader, and the collector.” I’m impressed that he sees creators as a large enough group to merit a mention. Collectors will always want to have the physical comic, but Lindsay sees the casual readers as a potential market. I’m not sure how well that works with complicated superhero universes, because it takes us back to the problem of accessibility: How will the reader know which Thor comic, say, to subscribe to? I’m not sure it’s possible to be a “casual reader” of superhero comics any more. (For those who want to get on the bandwagon, though, I like the feature that the New Yorker magazine subscription has: Your subscription allows you access to back issues as well. That could be a real boon for new readers.)

On the other hand, creators of self-contained indie series who are good at promoting their work could do very well with this model. Continue Reading »


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