I’ve escaped the love kennel by punching my way through the glass walls of reality and surprising the THN several years after my death. Oh wait.
Regardless of how I escaped, the point is I crawled through a river of poop and came out clean on the other side just to bring you a a few ways Marvel could consider in its neverending list of ways to “Shake things UP” in 2015. Sexcelsior!
Keep it light! Marvel’s position as the “Sunshine State” of comic book publishers is one of it’s biggest strengths at the moment. If DC’s moratorium on all-ages fun continues, the end result could very well be Marvel cornering the market on younger readers who will, in turn, become older readers that will continue to support the product well into their years. Admittedly, while most of the DC product is aimed at older audiences who have access to more money, the decline in quality we’ve seen since the launch of the New 52 lends itself to the idea they won’t be sticking around for much longer. With a flip of a switch, Marvel could very well bring back its ICON or MARVEL KNIGHTS imprints and scoop up all the lapsed readership from their cross-town rivals.
Diversify! With titles like Elektra and She-Hulk constantly in flux, Marvel has to resist the urge to pull the plug on its “fringe” characters to soon. More importantly, these kinds of fringe characters need to remain on the outside of “normal” in terms of art and story structure in order to stand out. The first two trade paperbacks of Hawkeye are a perfect example of how a book with a book with a unique art/story style took a formerly fringe character and turned him into a successful (albeit short) run as one of Marvel’s top books. Occasionally lending out the characters to independent comic creators would also provide an in for audiences who appreciate a quirky and off the beaten path touch. Another “Strange Tales” collection with Kate Beaton and Fiona Staples couldn’t hurt TOO much, could it?
Tone down the freebasing of the Avengers titles! Admittedly the least likely of all the suggestions Marvel would consider (considering that they come to me, only me, and no one else for all of their business and creative advice) is the idea that they’d let their hands off of the teat of their Avengers line. If the 90’s taught us anything about the saturation of comic titles, it’s clearly that we’ve never saturated the market with anything. Nope, never. Frankly, if you’re not using spare avengers titles to line the inside of your own personal sex kennels then you’re not reading enough of them. On a serious note though, there can’t be anything worse than repeating the bursting of the 90’s comic bubble almost a decade later. If there were a few less Avengers titles it could make room for a couple of old favourites back on the rack (looking at you, RUNAWAYS!)
Event schmevent! Much like the average hummingbird heart, Marvel’s event schedule keeps beating at a completely ridiculous pace for only a small period of time before having them plummet out of the sky. It’s not that the events themselves are bad, it’s that the relentless supply of universal time-space destroying wibbly-wobbly events doesn’t let up. With the sausage grinder that is the event schedule pumping out the next “Big Thing” every few weeks, it’s become a bit of a grind to get through the comic book year without feeling like you could at least miss ONE of them. Marvel wouldn’t have to cut them all out, but I don’t think anyone shed any tears over the flop that was “Inhumanity”.
Less Death more—Uh, just stop killing people. Yes, comic book deaths spike sales. No, no one cares about them. An interesting contradiction of ideas that seems to happen a few times every year. No self respecting comic reader believes that the death of Wolverine is a permanent one. Hell, even the “permanent” ones aren’t all that permanent (JUST STAY DEAD, JEAN! There are enough flame-broiled redheads in the Marvel Universe already!). The end result of the frequent killing of characters is one that numbs the senses to most of the adult readership and makes them less appealing to younger audiences. It becomes hard to value characters who have an infinite shelf life, regardless of what the story says. It becomes even harder to then sit through the numerous “Requiem/Death of/Legacy of” comics that come afterwards, making the entire ordeal just seem hollow and unnecessary.
These are only a few of the many changes Marvel could make for a positive effect in 2015. Got a few of your own? Don’t forget to leave a comment in the section below. If you’d like to rant at me on a more personal level, you can follow me on twitter at @Charlietron3000.
Charlie lives in a room where he is constantly bombarded with red solar energy, completely nullifying his powers and giving him a super sweet tan. He will write for the THN so long as he can escape the sex kennel. #Justsayin