The Future of Transformers comics?

Discussion in 'Transformers Comics Discussion' started by Hans, Dec 21, 2017.

  1. Bass X0

    Bass X0 Captain Commando

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    Be careful what you wish for...

    [​IMG]
     
  2. SG Roadbuster

    SG Roadbuster SG Wrecker

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    Ah, there's another snag there. How shallow the big events tend to be. Revolution was shallower than a kiddie pool because the writers had to give everyone something to do.
    First Strike was a little better off since it was more focused on the Gijoe vs TF aspect of things (before the plot shat the bed with fucking wizards)
    And Rom vs TF: Shining Armor was done magnificently due it having such a smaller focus on a handful of characters. (And Alex Milne's artwork certainly helped)
     
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  3. raindance773

    raindance773 Well-Known Member

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    That’s not the whole story.

    Beast Wars was the heroic Maximals fighting the evil Predacons (who were actively trying to start a civil war against the Maximals) on a prehistoric Earth while the war was very much going on.

    The first season of MtMtE was also against the backdrop of Overlord trying to kill everyone, fighting against Tyrest, and fighting against Shockwave’s attempts to kill everyone.

    Neither of those scenarios is exactly the Pax Cybertronian that people make them out to be.
     
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  4. raindance773

    raindance773 Well-Known Member

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    It drew fans, but did it sustain them? Are those new fans still buying books? Because IDW has alienated lots of longtime fans similar to how Disney has alienated a lot of long time Star Wars fans.
     
  5. Murasame

    Murasame CHIMICHANGAS

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    Also with the tiny page count it already takes ages to finally get the full story. But if they interrupt it with events it takes even longer. If those events were only every 2 or 3 years it wouldn't feel so bad. I don't read these events anyway.

    I wish they could drop the printed issues and up the page count again and then only print the tpb.
     
  6. osenator

    osenator Well-Known Member

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    I also hate the cross overs and I did stop buying 3 years ago, apart from a very few titles. I used to buy every transformer comics I could in the past. I still have all my Marvels tfs comics, since the very first issue. I will always be a huge Simon Furman fan and miss his writing. I do love Roberts too. I also loved some of Dreamwave plots too. I feel the IDW comics lost a lot in the last 2-3 years, somehow. I think I miss the war and the danger the autobots faced with the decepticons, the battles, action, fights, not just talking and talking and more talking.... Something I would seeing, is more TFS from other time lines mixed in. Imagine if Megatron from Cybertron (2013, from the horrible cartoon, but written well) and his decepticons suddenly attacks IDW transformers on cyberton. Mix in Armada, Energon, or even Movie Tfs. That would get me to buy IDW comics again!
    JM
     
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  7. Boatformer

    Boatformer Well-Known Member

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    Oh, for God's sake. Yes, it DID sustain them. MTMTE sold really, really well for a very long time. The drop-off now doesn't mean that the post-TDOOP direction didn't work when a big chunk of it sold better than Furman or McCarthy or Costa ever did!
     
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  8. dj_convoy II

    dj_convoy II Remix!

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    I would say, for four of the last five years or so, yes, the new direction absolutely brought in new readers and sustained sales. The drop off has been fairly recent, in the last fifteen months or so.
     
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  9. GoLion

    GoLion No longer a collector

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    It was fun and action-packed. We need way more of that.

    Frankly, and I hate to say it, the transformers comics have become boring. People just aren't reading them anymore; Not only that, but this supposed "NEW FANBASE" that has been "energized" doesn't sound like it's actually, y'know, buying the books.

    Personally, I'd like to see something different. Focus on ANYTHING else. There is so much potential out there for different types of stories, and we're getting the same nonsense over and over.

    The only remotely good book IDW has put out lately has been TAAO and Rom V. Transformers. The rest has been mediocre -- at best.

    It sustained them for a period of time. That period of time is now over. Time for something new.

    Keep Scott. Keep Barber.

    Drop Roberts.

    Oh, and to clarify, I DO NOT want a universal reset. I like the characters we have now. I just think the only thing they might bring me back fulltime is to do just that.

    I think you need to add 9 months to that and you might be right. People have been complaining about MTMTE/LL for a good long while. They've obviously dropped the books.
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2017
  10. SG Roadbuster

    SG Roadbuster SG Wrecker

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    interesting idea, might I make a counter-proposal

    replace Barber with Scott. and give her a full on, monthly Primary title.

    lets Roberts finish the story he's telling with Lost Light.
    then staple Nick Roche to James Roberts and give them a rotating roster of Mini-series
    we can jump back to Rodimus and co if need be, but this would also give the pair some time to do Mini-series focused on the Scavengers, Impactor and Mayhem, Megatron's adventures in the Functionist Universe, some world building flashback stories and whatever other nonsense the pair can come up with.
     
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  11. Murasame

    Murasame CHIMICHANGAS

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    I'd rather they keep Roberts and let Barber do the editing again and have Furman work together with Scott. Sounds explosive, but if they manage to work together, they might complement each other well in world building, interesting stories and action.
     
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  12. Murasame

    Murasame CHIMICHANGAS

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    I like that as well
     
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  13. GoLion

    GoLion No longer a collector

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    Your idea is much better. I accept!
    I'd love to get Roche back on a more permanent basis.
     
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  14. Danny-Boy

    Danny-Boy Centurion

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    I’m glad no one here is editing comics.
     
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  15. hardlurk

    hardlurk Well-Known Member

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    I'm bored. Something new might be less boring, but probably not.
     
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  16. Bumblemus Prime

    Bumblemus Prime Cracked in the head

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    I read the article linked upthread, and I still don't think we're seeing the full picture. Basically we're being told that "digital sales are X% in general..." That's not telling us a lot.

    You will never convince me, in 2017, that floppy sales represent anything meaningful. It's been 17 years since the big explosion of trade paperbacks in Borders/Barnes & Noble. People have been reading comics on their phones for 10 years. Comixology is 10 years old. Yes, a lot more people than you might expect still go buy floppies every month... but floppy sales have been in decline the entire digital era.

    I'm quite convinced that events hurt floppy sales. I think Secret Wars & the much-publicized canyon of Marvel sales proved that. But looking at data on floppies always obfuscates:

    • how many people read on a service like Marvel Unlimited
    • which titles sell better in digital (I would think that LL/MTMTE does)
    • how well trade paperbacks do over the year-long cycle of most books in bookstores (a muuuuuch longer sales cycle than the floppy sales cycle)
    • the effect of a saturated market where thousands more titles come out each month than did in the 80s & 90s
    • how very very very fucking many people pirate books and comics these days (and shame on you if you do)

    And the article that says "roughly X%" isn't giving hard numbers.

    Is it terrible that I love this idea?

    Yeah, I think the comics industry needs to stop relying on reader loyalty. TV doesn't. TV gives you a new season of the thing you like for 6-10 years with an occasional limited reboot and rarely takes your loyalty for granted. There's a reason why Gilmore Girls ran for seven seasons and then ran an 8-hour sequel series on Netflix. People like it to the point where they would watch it for an hour each week, watch reruns in syndication, and binge the reunion on Netflix.

    If Gilmore Girls had been a comic, we'd have The Gilmoreverse and the 17 spinoff series and the alt-universe reboot.

    Comics need to take a hint from TV. Limited arcs. Series that ultimately end. Time between storyarcs to let fans get hungry, but NOT for new artists and relaunched titles.

    The comics industry is still going through a difficult adolescence. In its seventy-year infancy, the comics industry mistook loyalty to characters as loyalty to a medium. Because the only real successful comics, pre-2000, were superhero comics, Marvel & DC & nascent Image/Valiant/other companies thought they had to create great IPs instead of just great stories. No one seemed to be able to figure out that the structure of the industry & its distribution had created a bizarre unique animal. Marvel and DC are still doing things that worked in the X-Men comics of the 80s and 90s just because THAT'S HOW CHRIS CLAREMONT (and his 90s imitators) WROTE STORIES.

    Yeah, I think that the triple hit of Titans Return, Hasbroverse, and the relaunch/new artists had a similar effect as Secret Wars. Too much messing with a good thing. One of them at a time would have been fine. Hell, TR was kinda fun as a distraction from the main storyline. But again, IDW made this mistake of thinking that they had reader loyalty & reader loyalty would follow them.

    I love MTMTE. I REALLY REALLY LOVE MTMTE. To the tune of a massive toy collection including about 30 3rd Party toys, and yes, I'm aware how much money that is.

    Even I got worn out by the time Lost Light came out, and the change in artists made it easier to stop buying LL so religiously.
     
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  17. Verno

    Verno Beast Wars Collector

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    When Primal ends up with the Matrix, he'll need a nemesis. Time for a new war.
     
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  18. Star Saber

    Star Saber Cybertron 5th Commander

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    I honestly like the world building Roberts did in his MTMTE run - and I'd love to see more of that - the Phase Sixers, the DJD, the grand battles during the Great War, etc and they would be perfect for mini-series or at least an anthology.
     
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  19. hardlurk

    hardlurk Well-Known Member

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    There aren't very many possibilities here.

    Scenario A: IDW spends money making an issue. They make a profit on that issue from sales to comic shops. Then a few months later they roll it up in a trade and make even more of a profit through the combination of trade sales to comic shops and trade sales to retailers like B&N and Amazon and such.

    Scenario B: IDW spends money making an issue. They don't make a profit on that issue. But a few months later they roll it up in a trade and the trade is so profitable that it makes up for the money lost on the monthlies.

    Scenario C: IDW spends money making an issue. They don't make a profit on that issue. And a few months later they roll it up in a trade and they still don't make a profit.

    Scenario A, a comic that is profitable on a monthly basis, depends on sales to comic shops. You can say, oh, but what about digital, isn't that more important than floppies nowadays? But I think if that were the case we would see titles switching to digital-only (or at least, digital-first, then trade) instead of getting cancelled. We don't have the numbers to make that decision, but the publishers do, and they aren't making it.

    Scenario B, a comic that doesn't do well monthly but does well in trade, depends on sales to retailers. This scenario exists because there are comic readers who won't ever set foot inside a comic shop. You can say, well, isn't that the more important market nowadays, can't we just focus on that? But I think if that were actually viable we would see titles switching from monthly publication to the graphic novel model instead of getting cancelled. We don't have the numbers to make that decision, but the publishers do, and they aren't making it.

    What we actually see the publishers trying to do, is to get the people who currently only buy trades through retail to start buying monthlies at comic shops. But it's not working very well.
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2017
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  20. GoLion

    GoLion No longer a collector

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    Hasn't there been more than a few articles out and out stating that digital, while big, is still only a small fraction of overall sales? Most people are STILL buying their books the old fashioned way. The decline in floppy sales is pretty indicative of the current situation with the IDW books.
     

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