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Messages - DeCarlo Rules

#16
All About Archie / Re: Nobody here anymore?
April 15, 2022, 03:43:54 PM
Quote from: Tuxedo Mark on April 14, 2022, 10:03:28 PM
Quote from: DeCarlo Rules on April 14, 2022, 02:13:47 PMMike Pellerito claimed in one recent digest text page that people were subscribing to the digests in record numbers, whether that's true or just hype.

Don't they print the circulation figures in the digests once per year? That could be something to check.

Do they? News to me. I can't recall seeing such a page anywhere in any digests I've read. I mean, a LONG time ago, the USPS had postal regulations that required comics to annually print a "Statement of Ownership, Management and Circulation" in order to qualify for reduced mailing rates, but it's been decades since those postal regulations have been in effect.
#17
All About Archie / Re: Nobody here anymore?
April 14, 2022, 02:13:47 PM
The Archie digests probably wouldn't even make a dent in NPD BookScan's listings if they were tracking periodicals, because then it would be in competition with mainstream magazines, not other comics.

Still, let's remember they have four ongoing digest titles plus a few other limited ones like Archie Showcase, Archie Milestones, Archie 80th Anniversary all going at the same time. And they're all low overhead because they only contain 5 or 10 pages of new material that they have to pay for, plus ACP has its own subscriptions and website direct sales in addition to the bookstores. Mike Pellerito claimed in one recent digest text page that people were subscribing to the digests in record numbers, whether that's true or just hype.
#18
All About Archie / Re: Nobody here anymore?
April 12, 2022, 08:45:31 PM
Quote from: Tuxedo Mark on April 11, 2022, 07:55:21 PMI checked Amazon, and the only categories where Archie even cracks the Top 100 are some hyper-specific children's comics categories. All of those are the classic-style comics. No Riverdale. No New Riverdale. No Archie Horror. No idea what that translates to in terms of sales, though.

I was reading Brian Hibbs' annual column where he discussed the previous year's Top 750 comics according to NPD BookScan, which claims to represent about 85% of physical book sales in North America outside the comic book Direct Market (comic shops). In other words, actual physical bookstores and online sellers. Physical books only, though; no digital copies. Not one title from Archie even made the list. I asked him about it in the comments, and he wrote:

QuoteThe best-selling comic from Archie, however, is "80 Years of Christmas" and it sells well under 3k copies.


So there you have it. The best-selling Archie book out in the real world beyond the comics shop sold far less than 3,000 copies last year.

Unless I mis-read the opening paragraphs of Hibbs' article, the NPD BookScan is tracking book sales in general... of which the Graphic Novel, Collected Edition, Trade Paperback, or whatever you want to call them is a subset. I point this out because it seems to me that the NPD BookScan is not tracking periodical sales at all. That means it tells us nothing about how Archie digests are selling in the bookstores. So all we're really getting out of this is that ACP's best-selling trade collection didn't do better that 3k in bookstores.

Come to think of it, I'm not really sure what the definition of "bookstores" is from NPD BookScan's POV. Are we talking just the physical brick & mortar stores, or are they including online booksellers? How about online sellers like Amazon where book sales only make up a small fraction of their total sales?

#19
All About Archie / Re: Nobody here anymore?
April 11, 2022, 10:37:52 AM
Quote from: Tuxedo Mark on April 07, 2022, 09:09:18 PMThe highest-charting digest that month, World of Betty & Veronica Jumbo Comics Digest #8, sold only 959 copies in the Direct Market. Not sure what they're selling at places like Walmart and Publix.

The nature of the average comic shop consumer is...

a) They have never really embraced Archie Comics in general, despite the good will of various retailers (and Steve Geppi of Diamond Comic Distributors).

b) They have definite resistance to any comic series not in the traditional floppy comic format. They will accept a better cover stock or paper stock gratefully, but that is where it ends. Magazine and digest-size comics are definitely not preferred because it messes up their bagging/boarding and comic-box filing system. Digests of all types have never done well in the comic shop system.

c) Fortunately Archie Comics continues to maintain a toehold in the wider world of magazine distribution (unlike other comics publishers), and that has probably been their sole salvation. In the wider world, the situation is reversed, and retailers much prefer the higher-profit digests (which also take up less display space) to the floppy comics.
#20
All About Archie / Re: Nobody here anymore?
April 11, 2022, 10:18:27 AM
@Mr.Lodge

Seems like the only one doing any bashing here (of Dan Parent) is YOU. We understand that your difference of opinion with the larger group of Archie readers has made you resentful that he remains a popular Archie creator despite what you think of him. Just accept the fact that Dan Parent's stories, covers, one-shots, and miniseries SELL (at least on the scale of what is possible for Archie Comics to sell in the present marketplace). Ousting Dan Parent from the list of Archie creators is only going to result in lost sales, not gained sales. Sorry you don't like him, but every post of yours is just another excuse to grind the same old axe.
#21
All About Archie / Re: Nobody here anymore?
April 07, 2022, 09:23:30 AM
And now that I think about it, I can't even understand how they can afford to do those occasional "new-style" Archie one-shots. If the floppies are at or below the break-even point, the new-style stories can't even be reused as digest reprints to justify the cost of doing them. If it's a miniseries, it could get a collected edition TP, but we haven't seen any of those lately either. Unlike the annual Archie Modern Classics collection, there is no similar type of reprint book for new-style Archie stories from whatever one-shots they might do in the previous year. They also double-dip on those modern classic stories by reprinting them in separate B&V and Archie & Friends collections.

They should be doing more new pages of stories in the digests, because future digests are always going to need reprint material... unless they have already projected the eventual demise of digests in the not-too-distant future.

For now, the compromise seems to be ONE new 'classic Archie' 5-page story in an otherwise reprint floppy one-shot, the same deal as with the ongoing digests... although once in a while they'll include a new bonus story in one of the digests.
#22
All About Archie / Re: Nobody here anymore?
April 06, 2022, 08:12:05 AM
It would take a LOT. Everything is a one-shot now except the ongoing digests. I can only presume this is so because the only thing that comic shop consumers want to buy now (from Archie, anyway) is a #1. ACP does do all-new one-shots once in a while, just not in the classic style. It's been a few years now since ACP has had any ongoing floppy format comic series. I would be really surprised if the current situation changes in any sort of positive way.
#23
I must say I highly approve of the apparent recent (well, the last year or so) efforts at ACP to interject different characters who haven't been seen in some time into the stories (AND in new "bonus" stories!). I don't know if it's being done solely for the purposes of maintaining trademarks or copyrights, or if they're putting the less-often-seen characters in there hoping to spark some interest in media adaptations...

But for example... I would love to see Toni Topaz, who it seems to me appears in most stories as nothing more than a background player or just a bit of visual window-dressing, be seen in story where she actually gets a substantial speaking role and is important to the plot somehow, where she gets to be a major character just for one story or two. The same goes for Midge or Dilton, or Cousin Marcy. Whatever happened to "the New Kids"? We never see them any more. Let's have a new Jughead, Sabrina, or Josie (and friends) solo-story once in a while.

If they could only get 2 new 5-page stories in every digest, we could see a lot more variety of different characters.
#24
And it's a Craig Boldman JUGHEAD story, so yay!  :D

Good month for ACP... there are also new stories with Harper Lodge, Bingo Wilkin (two of 'em), Sabrina, and Mighty Crusader Fireball and the Superteens, too!
#25
All About Archie / Re: Nobody here anymore?
March 19, 2022, 04:38:58 PM
I could do without the Little Archie(/Veronica/Betty/Jughead/Sabrina) junk taking up pages in the digests every single month. Might as well just leave those pages blank AFAIC. I don't mind when they put it in its own comic where I can safely avoid buying it.
#26
All About Archie / Re: Nobody here anymore?
March 15, 2022, 10:20:32 AM
And now we're apparently getting another wave of superhero guest-star stories with Steel Sterling.
#27
All About Archie / Re: Bob White
March 14, 2022, 10:18:28 AM
I do wonder what happened to him after the late 1960s. He just disappeared. He's another guy who started his career at ACP in the production department, along with Victor Gorelick, Bob Bolling, and Dexter Taylor.
#28
All About Archie / Re: Nobody here anymore?
March 12, 2022, 03:11:05 PM
PS -- If I recall correctly, this is only the first of several new stories coming up featuring Cricket.
#29
All About Archie / Re: Nobody here anymore?
March 12, 2022, 03:09:09 PM
Quote from: Tuxedo Mark on March 10, 2022, 02:50:04 PM
Quote from: DeCarlo Rules on December 15, 2021, 10:16:54 AMThe 5-page Classic Archie story plots just don't get very involved for the most part, so there's not much to say about them, except some are better than others.

Yeah, I've been noticing that. For the most part, these new classic-style stories are forgettable. Nothing really happens, not even character growth. For example, Sabrina was the featured character in yesterday's new story. She was babysitting a little girl and got the "witchups" (hiccups that make her magic go wonky, ripping off a plot from the Filmation series). The girl was zapped into the Alice in Wonderland book that Sabrina was reading to her. Sabrina then got herself zapped into the book. They met a bunch of characters from the book. Then Della showed up (having detected the "witchups") and got Sabrina and the girl out of the book. The end. Nothing happened. No adventure. Just "here are some characters that kids today may or may not recognize".

Apparently, next month, we get to look forward to a story in which the gang tries to find an alternate hiking trail and another one in which Veronica misplaces her purse, which has a million dollars in it, so Crickett is enlisted to sniff it out. Oh, those wacky teens these days, what with their carrying around all of that physical money. So relatable.

The most amazing thing about that is that an entire story was devoted to classic Sabrina without having to work Archie or B&V into the story as an excuse to publish it. That usually only happens when the new story is an extra 'bonus' story in addition to the regular B&V or Archie lead story. Also if I'm not mistaken the Sabrina reprint section in that issue was twice as many pages as she is usually allotted, and was right up front of the digest after the new story. Yeah, there's not much to say about the new story, except for some reason they decided to spotlight Sabrina in this issue out of the blue ("Little Sabrina" was even featured in the back, where it would usually be Little Betty and/or Little Veronica). It was a surprise. In fact, I don't remember there ever being a new Jumbo B&V digest (either title) that didn't have a new B&V story in it.

Maybe they should do a whole ARCHIE SHOWCASE issue with just classic Sabrina stories.
#30
All About Archie / Re: Jughead the lover
March 01, 2022, 02:09:26 PM
Virtually all of the Jughead-in-love stories date from the late 1980s onwards. You might find some before that where he's finagled into going on a date, but really hardly any where he shows real romantic feelings towards a girl. But still, that's 40-odd years' worth of Jughead stories.