Will DC Comics still be a thing? Part 2

by Matt Russell - Posted 9 months ago

   

Welcome back, my CryptoComic Compatriots! If you haven’t checked out part 1, click the link and read on. We have been discussing the dismemberment of DC Comics and what it means for the industry.

I wrote this as a single liong article, unfortunately, too long. I had to break it up and this seemed like a logical place. Lets just jump right in, assuming you read part 1

Read Part 1 here

WHAT COULD BE NEXT ON THE CHOPPING BLOCK?



I understand that this is “Show Business, not Show Friends.” This still doesn’t protect the jobs throughout the industry. So, who could be next? Due to the fact that this Major Media Conglomerate owns so many different businesses, it is my belief that NBC Universal may be the next to receive so many layoffs.

If you look at what happened when Disney bought Fox, we see precedence. The difference is that Disney (more quietly) spread out layoffs over the course of a couple of months. DC, decided to pull the trigger with a single email.

AT&T will basically be trimming the fat from companies that don’t meet the bottom line. Since they own almost everything that isn’t owned by Disney, more cutbacks are expected. If you want a list of everything that they own and want to make your own predictions, check out this article here.

FUTURE OF DC COMICS

Basically DC Comics has had a rough go of it lately. I didn’t even bring up the mass exodus of DC fans to Marvel due to the success of the MCU. It’s been hard lately. I truly feel for them.


It is my truest desire that they make it out of this. If they do, the landscape will look very different. Let’s take a quick look at what the future of DC Comics will be.

DC Universe is gone


Granted, this is getting folded into HBO Max. That is a decision comic book writer and YouTtuber Grace Randolph says should have happened at the launch of HBO Max.

DC Comics invested so much money into the DC Universe app. It’s hard to believe that they would just abandon it so quickly.

When the DC Universe app first launched it was so full of bugs that it would have made an exterminator blush. The reader was clunky, poor selection with comics, and it was constantly crashing. They thought that this would be their future. Unfortunately, it just predicted it.

DC Collectables...gone


With the push for digital, our toys, figurines, and action figures are a thing of the past. There were so many beautiful almost museum quality statues that will be no more.

I am unsure if they will ever make a resurgence. I’m sure they will, but I wonder if it will be licensed material instead of making it themselves.

Who’s Gone from the top brass?

Editor-In-Chief Bob Harris joined with DC when DC purchased Wildstorm in 2001. September 27, 2010 he was named DC’s new Editor-In-Chief. Before DC Comics, he had an impressive career over at the House of Ideas.

Black Label’s Executive Editor Mark Doyle is gone. The black label has been a controversial ride for a while, ever since they showed the “bat-wang” in a comic. That was a controversy for another time. With the constant flip-flopping when it comes to censorship, even though they touted it as a censorship-free comic line, forced them to shut the doors on this project.

Vertigo line although this is no surprise. DC looked at the bottom line a while ago and thought that wait, we are sharing rights with creators here at DC Vertigo, nope. When they stopped that, most of the creators went to Image which was founded on the idea that creators can retain most of their rights. Since all the good creators went away, they were left with crap. Hence, cancellations across the Vertigo line.


Jim Lee will stay on for now but only in a creative capacity, and not with the full “publisher” rights that go along with the title. I would love to see him return to the Indy sector, but only time will tell. Hopefully, he can reunite with his Executive Assistant Eddie Choi (fired) and make some creator-owned content.

According to Grace Randolph,

it seems like letting Eddie Choi go was more of a power move where they wanted to stress Jim Lee and let him know who is the boss around those parts. It just seemed personal in a way.

Comics Canceled

I don’t know of any other way to showcase this other than a list. Jim Lee during an interview has stated that they will focus on “Brand Related Content”. This is business-speak that roughly translates to “If it doesn’t have a Bat, S, or a W on their chest, their future is up in the air.

October

  • Batgirl
  • Batman and The Outsiders
  • Justice League Odyssey
  • The Batman’s Grave
  • Metal Men


November

  • Teen Titans
  • Young Justice
  • Suicide Squad
  • Hawkman
  • John Constantine: Hellblazer


Possibly

  • Aquaman


Many of the comics that are on the list are the up and coming new talent that has made it past the gatekeepers. New blood of the industry if you will. Keep in mind, every industry needs a shot of that new, that young, hungry factor. To get rid of this talent is a controversial decision, top say the least.

Remaining comics

I have contacted an old friend that managed to stay on at DC Comics. This told me to not mention their name or give any indication as to their identity; so I will flip a coin to decide their gender...male. So, we will call him Bob after our mascot.

Bob has told me that he has heard that DC’s weekly comic will strictly be digital. This makes sense with their overarching push to move to digital content. If you want a physical book, it will be in the form of a Graphic Novel or trade paperback of their existing work; think a reprint of the entire Crisis of Infinite Earths line.

For the time being, comic book stores will still receive a weekly comic but this will be phased out over time. I hope this doesn’t set precedence as it will mean the doom of your local comic shop.

Bob, who I must remind you still actually works for DC, has reinforced that this is still up in the air and no actual final decision has been made on this front.

This being said, DC has announced that they will still be saving some great comic runs. These include but not limited to (this is just the confirmed comics)

  • Batman and its various titles
  • Superman and it’s various titles
  • Wonder Woman
  • DCeased and its tie ins
  • Shazam
  • JLA
  • Green Lantern


All things being said, this isn’t the first time that DC had to make some hard decisions and cuts. In 1974, they cut 40% of their books. Granted there were a lot fewer books to choose from.

WB Games

Somehow through all this, WB Games was spared. Rumors stemming back years of their sale have been put to rest as they managed to make it out of the fire alive and well. Not only was it announced that they will remain firmly under the WB and AT&T umbrella, but I couldn’t find evidence of a single person getting let go during the WB Bloodbath, as the layoffs have been called.

Good for them. I’m happy that at least one small portion of the WB family made it out alive and unscathed.

FUTURE OF THE COMIC INDUSTRY

This doesn’t just affect DC Comics or Warner Brothers. This will have major ramifications throughout the industry.

Gate Keepers at Marvel & Indy Comics

With such a huge exodus from DC, many will likely end up at the house of Ideas. This means that with so much talent going over to Marvel, Gatekeepers will be sharpening their ax to keep out talent that is new to the industry.

I would be willing to bet my reputation that they will do everything to make it harder to get a job at Marvel. As a result, Kickstarter will start to see an influx of amazing talent in the Indy sector. There are already so many great comics from top tier talent. Could Kickstarter be considered one of the top comic publishers to date?

I have to say that I get about 70% of my printed books through Kickstarter and Indigogo. Some of my favorite creators such as Graham Nolan, Chad Hardin, and new favorites like Insymmetry Creations LLC, and Anadia have some of the best comics around. I would love to do an article just on the various Kickstarters that I’ve personally purchased along the way.


Superhero Comic Fans

With the rise of Indy Comics, we will see a pull away from traditional superheroes in tights. Many of the current Indy comics tackle genres such as romance, real-life, westerns, anthropomorphic, steampunk, and fantasy.

I don’t believe that we will ever fully pull away from the mighty adventures of the superhero genre, but it might be awhile before we see a team-up of Booster Gold and the Blue Beetle outside of a team book.


The Human Connection


I’ve talked a lot about this from a fan’s perspective, but there is a real human factor that I haven’t addressed. Over 800 people are without a job. With the government still recovering from COVID disaster, that means that most of them will not get their unemployment checks for months.

This means that some of these amazing creators that have brought you joy for years might lose everything; their house, cars, everything. It’s a sad world when such creative people (or any person) lose their livelihood. My heart goes out to them, and I know that everyone here at CryptoComics feels for their losses.

I truly wish everyone the best. I wish I had a magic wand that could make it all better. I just can offer some advice to everyone, especially those 800n that lost their jobs; keep your head up for this too shall pass.