As I see it, the biggest problem with the comics industry will always be cost effectiveness.
The average comic costs $3.99 U.S. and a movie download from I-Tunes is $4.99 U.S.. The bitter truth is that the comic industry is now in direct competition with Hollywood.
And, not to be the Harbinger of Doom but there is another factor I see rearing its evil head on the horizon… The Walt Disney Corporation.
One only needs to examine the monthly sales figures for the comic industry and the evidence becomes increasingly clear that most comics are not profitable.
The average number of copies sold, of all 300 comics published monthly, is approximately 15,000 copies.
And Diamond Distribution takes 60% off the cover price to distribute the product nationally.
The cost of creating the art and editorial content of any book is around $13,000-23,000 and $6,000-7,000 to print and distribute.
I’m not an economics major but it doesn’t take a Master’s Degree to figure out that these numbers don’t work. For independent publishers, this nightmare scenario keeps them hanging on by their fingernails.
And, at this point, this is where my fear of Disney rears its ugly head.
Marvel Studios has successfully raised the level of interest in characters like Iron Man, Thor and Captain America to iconic status with the general public by a series of popular films. This is the pinnacle of what every Intellectual Property owner hopes for.
Once a character becomes part of our lexicon, something that your mother recognizes and understands, all the rungs of the ladder that were used to climb to that level become moot.
So…what’s the problem with THAT?
Only this: When was the last time you saw a Mickey Mouse comic? Or a Donald Duck comic?