Comments: Political messages in comics now vs. then

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Yeah, this guy sounds like a total idiot and absolutely clueless about comics. MacFarlane is absolutely right. Political messages more often than not don't make good comics. There are a few exceptions, obviously (the Secret Empire storyline comes to mind), but in today's comics from Marvel and DC this junk is everywhere. Hard-left politics in comics over the past decade or so (I started noticing it about five to six years ago) are what lead me to stop buying contemporary comics altogether. That, and publicity stunts like overdrawn crossovers and the nastiness certain comics creators exhibit toward their fanbase....

I think the final straw for me as far as contemporary comics go was the Cap vs. the Tea Party storyline from 2010. I really started to question, at the time, why I was giving people like Ed Brubaker money when they constantly spit in my face. Interestingly enough, it was your Newsbusters article, Hube, where I first discovered the truth about that storyline. A friend had posted it on his Facebook page at the time and I discovered Colossus through that.

As for Gail Simone's Movement, no one even READS that comic. It's not doing well, critically or financially. I suspect sooner or later, it will be cancelled, the latest casualty of a failed reboot.

Posted by Carl at August 13, 2013 10:35 PM

Carl, thanks for reminding me to thank Hube for the link to my CA204 post way back when. Still one of my fifteen minutes of fame. XD

Anyway, I found a site breaking down sales numbers:

So... yeah. Just take a look. Seems to me a lot of apolitical comics are at the top.

Now if we look for the specifically political ones we know came out.
May 2013- Movement #74, Green Team #77 (note that MLP:FiM is number 68!)
June 2013 - Movement #120, Green Team #147
July 2013 - Movement #164, Green Team #198

That is... a pretty bad drop.

Oh, and for those curious? Issue 1 of MLP:FiM back in Nov 2012? Placed @ #15.
(then #54, #45, #55 AND #65, #65, #68, #66, #66 counting subsequent issues, not reprints) Now THAT is some consistent showing and settles the issue I think (unless you REALLY want to argue that ponies are political).

And I think it proves both people wrong. Politics don't sell, but there is room in comics for some diversity in the storytelling too (even for "girlie" stuff like ponies). The key factor is, and always, GOOD STORYTELLING!

Want to kill the "politics sell" theme further? Guess what was the #1 trade paperback sold in may of 2013.
"Adventure Time Original Vol. 1 Playing Fire"

Q.E. f'ing D.

(in fact, that was a good month for independents as 5 out of the top 10 sold TPB were NOT by Marvel/DC)

Posted by Nate Winchester at August 14, 2013 10:14 AM

Indeed, Nate. The key factor for me is definitely good storytelling, something that has been non-existent at Marvel and DC for quite some time.

I'm not into Adventure Time or MLP, but obviously both have big fanbases and their comics seem to sell better than the Big Two's comics do. The independents, while not immune to political propaganda (see Think Tank from Top Cow and Image's Big Lie, to name two recent examples), seem to understand that good storytelling is the key, NOT diversity and pandering to political correctness.

Posted by Carl at August 14, 2013 02:51 PM

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