Excellent column by Brian Hibbs at Newsarama about DC’s multiple sell-outs and second printings of One Year Later titles.
The main point echoes something I’ve always thought: The super comic industry takes some perverse pleasure in sellouts and limited quantities. Their press releases practically crow “This book was awesome! Lots of people loved it! Hot creative team! You can’t buy it any more, or at least not for another month when we do a second printing.”
In some cases, I suppose it’s understandable – printing books isn’t free. But OYL, as Hibbs points out, was specifically geared towards attracting new readers to DC. Doesn’t it make sense to have a large overprint in the event these books are as successful as they hope? If everyone hears how great the new Aquaman book is, isn’t it common sense that Aquaman be easily available? I liked the first issue of Busiek and Guice’s relaunch, but missed the second because I’m not so fanatical that I always visit the comic shop on Wednesday. Now, I have to wait until they do a second printing – several weeks, maybe a month from now, by which point I may well have lost interest in the title. Any momentum and press for the book will have long since died off.
IT’s really a matter of DC insisting retailers take all the risk: If you don’t order the books now, you don’t get any more. Nyah. The store loses out on some short term money, but both DC and the store are losing out long-term, as customers aren’t able to begin reading the hot books everyone is talking about.
Yes, it’s really a very stupid industry sometimes.