Why are the comics not as popular?

Discussion in 'Transformers General Discussion' started by MrSoundwaveGuy, Jan 1, 2010.

  1. MrSoundwaveGuy

    MrSoundwaveGuy I've made a huge mistake

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    With GI Joe the comics are more popular with the fans than the cartoon. But with Transformers it seems to be the opposite and the cartoon seems to be more popular. Why do you think it's like that? Were there just alot more kids that watched the show and not many that read the comics. I'm sure most would agree that the Marvel Comics, the UK ones espically, are superior to the show. It also seems that there aren't a ton of people in the TF fanbase that read any of the comics like Dreamwave, IDW, etc.
     
  2. antapp

    antapp Well-Known Member

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    I think the cartoon was more popular in the US as it was shown more regularly and the comics were only monthly, plus some of the stories in the US (Car Wash of Doom!) were poor. In the UK, I think the comic was probably more popular as it was weekly and had more coverage than the TV show, plus with the Marvel UK stories being better written, they had a bit more about them. If that makes sense!?
     
  3. ChopperByrne

    ChopperByrne Well-Known Member

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    Although as a child I loved the show because myself and all my friends watched it, I was the only one who read the comics and they'll always be number one for me.
     
  4. Backscatter

    Backscatter Autobot Brainmaster TFW2005 Supporter

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    Comics are for hard core fans IMHO. So much more is learned from them and we really get to know our Transformers. ;) 
     
  5. Ash from Carolina

    Ash from Carolina Junior Smeghead

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    I'm going to chalk it up to the Larry Hama factor. The GI Joe cartoon could get rather silly and it felt sort of like they were dumbing it all down for you. Now the comic books, wow, Hama is throwing on the military jargon really hard and it felt like adult stories so it was one heck of a hook. In other words the GI Joe comic book was giving you the military feel that the cartoon was never going to touch, oh and it's cooler when people like Roadblock don't rhyme all the time.

    I don't know if the current GI Joe comic books are as popular because Devils Due really ran the GI Joe property into the ground for some fans so fewer fans are willing to give anyone the chance. Plus it kind of hurts that you can buy the action figures for only a buck or two more than the comic books.

    Transformers the cartoons might be more popular because you had such great voice acting back in the early days of the cartoon. The Marvel stories were by no means bad but they just can't stand out compared to seeing transformations and the voices. Plus the comic books now have that problem of getting invested in a story only for everything to change, at the price of comics people might feel it's better to just collect the toys than the comic books.
     
  6. grimlock1972

    grimlock1972 "No Mas" My Wallet

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    Its simple the cartoon was far more accessible back in the day and they were free to watch as compared to having to buy the comic books to read them. ( unless you bummed a copy off a friend) So its no surprise that far more people identify more closely with the cartoon take on G1 then the comics I like both although i have only read a small fraction of the G1 comics.

    Both are great and deserve our praise.
     
  7. Nachtsider

    Nachtsider Banned

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    Same reason why ROTF raked in the attention of the masses over more intelligently-written TF fiction, I guess.
     
  8. DecepticonSpike

    DecepticonSpike Kimber/Stormer Fanboy

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    When I was a kid, I didn't even know there was a TF comic until the cartoon was in it's second season. Plus the cartoon was "free" while the comic was 75 cents, so guess which one a 10 year old will choose?
    But I do agree that the Marvel UK stories were far better than most of the early US comic stories.
    BTW, I've read every US release of G1, up to the IDW ongoing series. I barely made it though the end of AHM, and the "new" G1 combined with movie designs don't work, IMHO.
     
  9. manyoufactsure

    manyoufactsure Maximal TFW2005 Supporter

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    I became a fan of TF through the cartoon. I did see some comics, but didn't really care for the artwork, and I lived outside of town so the comic shop was not a regular place for me to visit (and money).

    I became a fan of Comics with Dreamwave but had problems getting them online. Found a local shop and the guy located the ones I was missing, for me, but then Dreamwave fell apart.
    Started buying the IDW comics but then the Comic shop owner moved away to take care of his sick Father.

    Found a new shop but it was out of the way and money became tight so I stopped buying.

    Don't think Comics and me, were meant to be.
     
  10. Ash from Carolina

    Ash from Carolina Junior Smeghead

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    True, the only reason I knew there was the comic book back then was because I was reading so many Marvel comic books back then. Pretty much all the chore money I could make went into comic books.

    The cartoons though I don't think there were any kids at school that didn't watch the cartoon since it was back before cable got big and you could just watch cartoons with the old rabbit ears.
     
  11. Moonscream

    Moonscream YES, We EXIST!

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    That was also the time when newstand sales of comics were declining and the direct market was just starting to become established. IIRC the Joe market tends to skew toward older fans, which is why Hama's writing would have appealed greatly to them, and they would have had greater ability to access them than kids would have. On the other hand TF audiences skewed toward a younger audience who wouldn't have had as much money or ability to gain the comics on a regular basis.

    Plus, (aside from the interesting sci-fi aspects) the ridiculous situations in the cartoons look less ridiculous when applied to giant robots. :D 

    --Moony
     
  12. General Magnus

    General Magnus Da Custodes of the Emprah

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    One can like both, I guess. :p 
     
  13. -Mainframe-

    -Mainframe- Well-Known Member

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    If the comics weren't that popular then the prices would be lower across the board.


    Transformers More Than Meets The Eye #1
    $29.99

    I've seen them go for much higher. I'm looking for the singles and trades.
    But, at a reasonable price.

    This too. ;) 
     
  14. Coeloptera

    Coeloptera Big, bad beetle-bot

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    Hama was a fantastic writer who treated the premise dead seriously, and created some awesome work. There was no awkwardness to it. He just ran with the premise, with Cobra, and decided to play it more-or-less straight. His Cobra Commander is occasionally a genuinely frightening figure.

    I think he didn't care so much about the tie-in aspect and it never seemed to be shoved down his throat either, so he had a bit more leeway.

    The irony is strong with this one.

    - Coeloptera
     
  15. smkspy

    smkspy is one nice fucking kitty

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    I'll also add that Transformers work better as a tv medium. Actually seeing the characters transform goes a long way to endearing the viewer to the cartoon than the sometimes weird comic art of said process. This isn't to say that I don't love the comics. I purposely fuse my G1 continuity into a hybrid of comic and cartoon. G.I.Joe is comic all the way.


    I'm gonna disagree with you here. When G.I.Joe and Transformers were being published you could still easily find comics in gas stations, drug stores, and supermarkets. And they were cheap enough back then for parents to buy if kids didn't have the money. Hell, I got all my old Joe comics from newstand sales, and I remember seeing Transformer comics. They just didn't appeal to me. It was funnier to buy a Joe and a Joe comic at the supermarket than just a Transformer comic.

    Looking back, it really wasn't until the early/mid-90s that newstands started to really disappear.
     
  16. Moonscream

    Moonscream YES, We EXIST!

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    I probably should have clarified as 'beginning to decline'. Not gone, tho. And there were a lot of stores in outlying rural areas where you had a very limited selection if you had a selection at all, so those kids would have more likely seen the show instead of bought the comics.

    --Moony
     
  17. smkspy

    smkspy is one nice fucking kitty

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    I grew up in the boonies and even my two supermarkets (Winn-Dixie and Piggly Wiggly) and gas stations pretty much all carried newstands up till like 1993. I'll agree that selection was limited, but those places were probably more likely to carry those comics because of the tv and toy media behind them. It was actually order numbers not ordering locations that was declining from 80-93ish. Ordering locations started their decline once cover prices started edging towards $2.
     
  18. shibamura_prime

    shibamura_prime Jumpin' Jellyfish! Super Mod

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    Because to your average Joe or Jane, sitting your ass in front of a TV screen is more engaging and easier than cracking a book.
     
  19. Superquad7

    Superquad7 We're only human. Super Mod

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    I have to say that in my region of the world (south eastern US), buying comics isn't the easiest thing in the world. The comic book industry hasn't exactly been thriving for a lot of reasons, and a direct result of that has been the lack of places to buy comics. One of my fondest memories as a kid was going to the grocery store and reading comics at the magazine rack. They were stocked on a spinner, and I'd go there while Mom shopped.

    Comics have risen in cost as well ($3-5 per issue now), and it's already been mentioned that people don't have to pay an extra fee [on top of their cable service provided] to watch a cartoon. Even going to the movies is relatively easier than going out to buy a comic . . . .

    Also, people have to read a comic. 'nuff said, there, I think :lol 
     
  20. -Mainframe-

    -Mainframe- Well-Known Member

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    Watching television isn't engaging. It's laziness to just want to sit and do nothing. Learn to read. :p 

    Comic companies have done this to themselves.

    The Comics Code Authority needs to be brought back so comics can be sold in stores like they used to be. The comic companies can sell "adult" comics under another banner like Marvel's MAX and DC's Vertigo labels.

    Comics that are accessible to an all-ages audience will make more money.
     

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