Discussion in 'Transformers Comics Discussion' started by justiceg, Jun 26, 2017.
CEO to public "I really wanted that ten dollars, plus it came with a free t-shirt"
How did Hasbro make any money in the 80s from that silly marvel comic or that cartoon? They should have just sold diaclone toys and not wasted time and money creating multimedia characters and brand awareness, boy do they look foolish today!
Honestly it's hard to tell if it's really sarcasm.
I know you lost interest and I'm in the same boat as you. I know what your saying, the numbers vindicate your assessment and feelings, but it's still not something to be happy about. It's hard to be critical on this board, especially of Roberts, people refuse to look past what they like and see the big picture. I'll say it bluntly, the people making the comics aren't that talented and need help.
Barber is very up and down in quality. He seems to have a grasp on simpler basic stories, but is a disaster when he tries to go beyond that. Roberts has been great at making characters, giving us cool ideas, building hype, and his first 18 months or so really was a bonafide home run. After the initial home run period Roberts has struggled with climax/payoff, pacing, structure, maintaining character voice, pandering, and cheap writing tactics. When it comes to Scott I don't know what to say, she just really doesn't grab a lot of people with her stories. None of the artists are exceptional, definitely could use an upgrade.
Now there are two exceptions, Milne as Roche. I think we all see now how utterly important Milne was to the storytelling in MTMTE. He has a solid grasp on depicting the robots in all states of being. Roche is both a good artist and writer. As a writer Roche has been interesting and fundamentally sound. As an artist Roche can do everything Milne does.
It would nice if someone could somehow get Barber and Roberts back to 2012 form. But I doubt anyone has an interest in getting back to basics.
This is why the best talent in the industry goes creator owned with their best ideas. This is why Mike Mignola has spent 20 years selling 15-20k copies of hellboy instead of being a top talent somewhere else. When he got the movie and merchandise deals, it's his payday. The big two are good place for a paycheck and to get your name out there. The economics make writing a licensed comic at IDW an even worse bet than working for the big two. Economics is why creative talent will always be an issue for licensed IDW comics.
Potentially there is more money in multimedia like with MCU or SW and Hasbro wants a seat with TFs, but they have no experience with this stuff like Marvel/Disney/Lucasfilms has. The G1 comic/cartoon were all created through other parties. And Hasbro's own attempts through the Hub and HasLabs were largely failures.
It's not something to be "happy" about, for sure.
I think IDW has always has a problem with good editorial. I think Roberts is talented --- but editorial seems to either interfere with him via big events OR leave him entirely to his own devices. Not entirely true but...
Barber is a better editor/idea man than writer. Albeit I do mostly enjoy rid season 1.
I think Scott has finally found her groove and I've really enjoyed taao. So. Of course she's being cancelled.
Really the Milne debacle demonstrated publicly how inept editorial is.
No, I was talking about how the Deadpool movie pushed even further promos like Deadpool cover everywhere month, or whatever promo there is. Unless you're going to tell me the movie release hurt sales of any Deadpool related books (not being factious, but I'm too lazy to look up numbers and I'm only going by what I saw in my LCS so it actually might have).
I agree it's temporary, but my point was along the lines that other media increases sales, no matter how temporary.
I completely agree it's temporary, but I think Marvel would take what they can get.
The whole market for being entertained has changed so using examples from the 80s/90s, even early 2000s can't really be used any longer.
I'd say the Raimi Spider-man and Singer's X-men movies most definitely pushed comic sales. I mean there was that whole new Ultimate line that I'd argue most benefited from the movies and they lasted a while. But I don't think that success would work these days.
Can't tell if serious.
Truth? I doubt Hasbro made any money from the G1 comics or Cartoon. They made their bread and butter with the sale of the toys.
My question to those of you in the know: When does the price of the license cross that proverbial Rubicon? IDW is eventually going to get to a point that they'll be losing money on the license if their numbers get any worse. I have to imagine the current situation is IDW pays for the license, and gets to keep all the profit from the sale of the comics. If the comic isn't selling it becomes a net loss for IDW. Right? I'm not sure on how it works with comics and stuff, but I do have a pretty firm grasp of how licensing out properties work. And the current agreement doesn't seem financially beneficial to IDW in the long run. Especially if their numbers keep slipping. It would make more financial sense for IDW to trim the fat by either renegotiating the cost of license, or to drop the license all together.
And I don't understand why they thought buying up all those other Hasbro properties was a good idea. Outside of the initial release, most of those comics have been dreadful.
Nailed it. (slow clap)
I do agree with RNSrobot that Barber is a good idea man, though.
What brand are you following dude? TF was a multimedia brand to start with (on purpose), and has been since. Toys, cartoon, comics, video games, board games, all sort of useless licensed crap, paper towels, sleeping bags etc.
Sure they farm stuff out to various studios to do things for them (like War for Cybertron, boy that one didn't pay off at all, BIG MISTAKE, silly Has-bros ) , but then so do many other companies that makes millions of dollars? (batman, tmnt)
And Hasbro went from
"we think we might have paid marvel to create some lorezzzz, we dont remember so good...we're not too sure about it, can we have some money now please?"
With their modernized transformers media/lore internal bible, documents and other tomfoolery that they shovel down the throats of any potential licensee and say "Yo dog, we like Transformers on our Transformers, now get to it, go make us more money!"
The days of lone writers making up whatever they want are long gone, unless its say small one off comic or something, bit more freedom there, but these days they keep a right least on their Lore, just like TMNT and Batman.
However, just like any other mass-media characters, anything the licensee's create under Hasbro is owned by them, so they can cherry pick whatever they want from comics, movies etc for new media. Just like every time there is Batman film that steals from all the Batman writers that came before and then they say "well, WE wrote this story" when everyone knows they took literal frames and scenes straight out of others work, but then film has always done that, nothing new.
They *absolutely* know there is a market for older age cartoon like say an IDW-verse show that would screen on NETFLIX. Will something like that happen? Probably not anytime soon given their main focus is always on the younglings and the toys.
They *absolutely* know what marketing, cross promotion and multiple streams of media means for archetypal pop culture characters. These characters would DIE almost overnight without multiple forms of media to support them**
Anyhow, how WOULD a cartoon help sell comics? The answer specifically for comics is that they would not sell, comics are a small niche market. It would only be small piece of pie in the Hasbro multimedia dish.
**Maybe not totally gone, but any market share would be in the toilet, and you'd be looking at some old lame "Remember ALF!" style internet fan pages, instead of the glut of pro and fan media we have to luxuriate in
They probably didn't. I have no idea. If anyone does know more on this topic, pleas post as I a always hungry for more info on the early days to write about in article.
The cartoon and the comic were specifically created to help sell the toys. That's in the wiki, it's in the TFW Article series on the history of the Transformers, or any other retrospective that looks back at the origins.
It was literally the creation of the brand /media itself? I assume everyone would already know that as the same story has been told a million times?
It was also what Hasbro had done years before in the 80s with G.I. Joe, which established their relationship with Marvel, so they knew they could do the same formula again of comic/toon/toys/brand awareness. They had long repeated meetings about this sort of stuff with licensors and creative beatniks for the purpose of creating/growing their brand.
Am I wrong in assuming that the majority of people posting in this thread would already know exactly that? I'm genuinely scratching my head here???? If I am tell me, as I genuinely do not know.
Anyhow, That's how they made money.
That's why they have multi-media characters and not some one off thing from 30 years ago that has been forgotten. It was a fluke it worked, it could have died like anything else from that era.
It was a total fluke TMNT are still around, and look much they are worth these days.
Any of the big companies responsible for your Batmen, your spidermen know the big money is always in licensing, not in the core media toon or comic, but in selling merchandise, whatever flavor it may appear in. And you get there by cross promotions.
Remember when some new wrestler you never heard of, would be introduced with one of your all time favourites? Or when "Bland Man X" appears in "Amazing Spider-Man" Again,
cross promotion, something old and familiar, mixed with something new, to ease you into opening the old rusty wallet and keeping the whole wheel spinning.
You'd need to go a lot farther back than 'a few years ago'- things are better now for the industry than they were ten years ago, and the industry crossed the $1 billion mark for the first time last year.
A lot of people don't realize what comic sales look like and the history until they dig into it (for which I recommend comichron). Non-big-2 comics being under 10k is pretty normal, and sales steadily ticked up for awhile until recently leveling out.
That said, IDW specifically was definitely better off a few years ago than they are now.
Yeah, digital media has at least partly saved "comics" (as in ALL comics) from the "world is ending" crowd. Who have been predicting the "death of comics" actively since the 70's.
WW2 created this mythical bubble that comics never returned to, and it took a few decades to realize that comics as a medium were not the miracle wonder bread their creators and brand promoters want you to believe they are.
It's funny now to think of when Marvel went bankrupt, and the asset were about to be sold off, and then you had folks insisting that Spider-Man ALONE was worth millions, which must have seemed like crazy talk back then when most people's movie going experiences were of the Schumacher bat-codpiece variety and the nose div of any potential superhero live action films.
Digital's definitely been a boost, especially for the non-big-two crowd. The 'death of comics' crowd have been off pretty much the entire internet age- from a low-point of the 90s (following the speculator crash), the number of physical stores have about doubled.
Bookstores too- they've become a much bigger thing in recent years.
Visit Japan sometime. I can't walk 5 steps outside my apartment and throw a rock in any direction without hitting some place that sells comics. Markets, convenience stores, train stations, what have you. The largest bookstore near me (yes, those also still exist here) has an entire floor of comics. Which is more space than they devote to novels. Comics are a huge and booming industry in Japan.
They make up 27% of printed material- or did a decade or so ago, I think they've had a minor decline since, but that's still huge.
The arc of manga is interesting and started way different. In Japan, things really started with the the likes of Osamu Tezuka taking off huge in the post-war era, and the following development of shonen and shojo markets (contrast to the US, where in the comics code era things shifted away from catering to girls), they became much more of a cornerstone of Japanese publishing and never stopped. Every other comics industry wishes they could be manga ^^
Meanwhile in Europe, the kids market has long been stronger, while they've had a continuous prestige-format thing for adults around forever, but never really had a huge explosion phase like either pre-WW2 US comics or post-WW2 Japanese ones to my knowledge (and frankly, I prefer both US and Japanese output).
European comics are hit and miss, a lot of them being so art-driven that what story there is is a rambling mess with no structure or point. And a lot of what's left has the same problems as US comics: licensed or corporate-owned characters. But when they're great...say, anything Hugo Pratt ever did... they're REALLY great.
I'd just like to state for the record that I'm kind of against the mixing of properties like they are doing. It's sort of Shoe horning, and while I buy Revolutions, to help support them, I don't read them. Honestly, despite what they say, the shared universe thing seems more like a Hasbro thing and a giant toy tie-in event, which IDW has proven to, time and again, with or without the interference of Hasbro as I don't know if they rush them, have things be very rushed, and very unfulfilling after the promise of an interesting concept. Dark Cybertron, Combiner Wars, et al. None of those series were good to me. I read all of Dark Cybertron, and I couldn't bring myself to read Combiner Wars after some of the issues, despite having them all. I think it would be better if they kept the properties apart, or better got them in sync, but I don't know how to do that. I just know, despite loving to mix up my own toys for massive battles and stories myself, the way IDW has done it, doesn't feel right. But, that's just my opinion.
Yea, I agree. I find a large chunk of the eurocomics I try fairly shallow experiences, though with some great exceptions. And a fair amount that are like SF short stories- good ideas, but the characters are completely stock, so pretty much 'snack food' comics, very very pretty snack food. Overall I prefer the US and Japanese markets by a fair margin, there's more character-based work to be found and a lot more long-term story telling.
That's because you only get a little part of the comics Europe produces. Even those that are popular don't tend to get translated unless they're made by an important artist. Besides maybe Blacksad, I doubt any Spanish comic has ever arrived to the USA, and the same applies to all of Europe.
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