Archive for the ‘The Gutter’ Category

Looking Forward to 2015: Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 30th, 2014

The two comic related stories that impressed me the most this past year were the Kirby v. Marvel settlement and Rocket Raccoon co-creator, Bill Mantlo’s generous treatment by Marvel in response to the  Guardians of the Galaxy film.

I found these moments to be significant because they were the culmination of decades of struggle by the men, their families, and a legion supporters of Creators Rights in the Comics Industry.

Thirty years ago, the idea of Jack Kirby or his family being compensated appropriately for the Marvel characters he created or co-created was an idealistic fantasy that most people believed could never be fulfilled.

Twenty-two years ago, when prolific Marvel writer Bill Mantlo suffered a traumatic head injury in a tragic accident, there was little hope that any potential success gleaned from characters or stories that he created while working in comics would benefit his long term care.

In 2014, after years of monumental success of comic book properties in film, the ice began to thaw on the relationship between creators and comic book companies. Deals began to happen behind closed doors to satisfy creators who challenged ownership of properties that had long been held tightly under the premise of “Work for Hire.”

Though everything regarding Creator’s Rights in comics may still not be perfect, strides have been made.

For me, little was much more pleasing than watching a proud and content Neal Kirby participate in a Marvel 75th Anniversary Celebration or seeing pictures of a beaming Bill Mantlo watching a private screening of Guardians of the Galaxy from his bed in a long term care facility, all set up by Marvel executives.

Knowing that deals have finally been made to secure the Kirby family well into the future and that Bill Mantlo will be the recipient of royalties that could be used to support his tremendous healthcare needs proves what many of us in the comics industry believed, that creators could and should be beneficiaries of the success of their creations.

It also proved that if you believe in something strong enough, work at it hard enough, and have enough support from the people around you, you should never give up. There is hope for the future.

While working on the fourth volume of David Anthony Kraft’s COMICS INTERVIEW: The Complete Collection,  I had the opportunity to re-read an interview with me and Art Director, Geraldine Pecht while at Comico in 1987. It was a look back at my own hopes and dreams nearly three decades past in comparison to the reality that transpired.

It was true affirmation that we have no idea what the future holds but that some dreams never die. It was a flashback that rekindled a youthful enthusiasm that I can only hope to maintain throughout 2015 and beyond.

I had big plans for Comico in 1987. Plans that, for me, ended abruptly that same year. Like the Kirby family and Bill Mantlo, though, I have never given up and neither has by former Comico partner, Bill Cucinotta who had his Comico career cut short prior to mine.

Now we both have big plans for CO2 Comics but with the benefit of many hard lessons learned.

Comico Black Book cover

When I sat for that interview, Comico was at it’s peak and ready to celebrate its five year anniversary with a little product called Comico Black Book. Little did we know, the company was was poised to crash and burn.

I comparison, halfway through our fifth year, CO2 Comics is still building a solid foundation and growing.   Though we may not have had the meteoric successes that we had with Comico and have seen our share of setbacks, Bill and I are content that  we work with people we trust and have mutual respect for. We have more control over our product and integrity and we produce comics and product in a way that does not put us in jeopardy of the production expenses the distribution system or the competition that existed in the 1980’s.

The future is bright and hopeful for CO2 Comics because we have held on to a dream that we are unwilling to give up. Yes, we are looking forward to 2015 and many years after that!

Thanks to all the wonderful people that continue to believe in us and support us. We could not have come this far without you!

We wish you all a very happy, healthy and prosperous New Year as we look forward to 2015!

Gerry Giovinco

Suicide and the Comic Artist or Life in the Gutter

Tuesday, September 18th, 2012

Did you ever have that moment when it seems like the world just took a sledgehammer to your head? You know, when all that seems right in the world is suddenly just turned upside down.

I think I did when I read Dave Sim’s blog post, The End?, where he provides us with what is essentially a  suicide note for his career as one of the preeminent  and influential comic artists of my generation. The irony for me being that the day  I had a chance to read the post was September 10, World Suicide Prevention Day.

I have the somber experience of having known too many people that have either chosen to take their own life or who are perpetually mourning someone dear that made this fatal choice. Death is permanent and irreversible. Fortunately, walking away from a career is not.

As much as Dave seems to be struggling with the current economy,  the state of the market and whatever creative demons he is encountering, it is impossible for Dave Sim to just disappear. He and his work, Cerebus, Judenhass, glamourpuss, zootanapuss and eventually The Strange Death Of Alex Raymond are now and will be permanent elements of our culture having played significant roles in the advancement of independent comic art and comic creator’s rights.

Regrettably, Dave is experiencing the plight of the artist, especially one that has experienced success and seen it wane. The artist and their work achieve immortality through their influence on culture and though the triumph of their success may perpetually be heralded, this fame is rarely translated into permanent riches. It is foolish for the artist to hold on to glory so tightly that it prevents them from living a normal and creative life.

Dave can hide all he wants. He can trash everything he owns, but his legacy will live forever in print and in the cultural impact he and his work have had on society.

Today there are more people creating comics and struggling to support themselves than ever before in history. This is in large part due to Dave Sim’s creation of an aardvark that proved that comics could be different, intelligent, and provocative. Dave along with a very few others jammed his foot in the door of the Direct Market opening a gateway for a flood of independent creators.

Partly due to Dave Sim, creating comics, though not necessarily succeeding financially with them, has become a passion and a way of life for countless creators. These artists have chosen to express themselves with comics because of creative liberations they experienced by pioneers like Dave.

I guess that is why The End? stopped me in my tracks. Because a man who had given so many comic creators hope and inspiration to make comics, just because they wanted to, is willing to bury his head and walk away because of money.

Dave, look at the people you have inspired. Those that hold two jobs and still come home at to make comics at night. Those who have lost relationships with loved ones over their preoccupation with words and pictures. Those that have made comics till they died, in poverty, just because they had to. They all wish they could have a splinter of the success that you have had and even if they never do they are still happy making comics because that is just what they want to do.

I don’t mean to burden Dave with any more pressure than he obviously is already. I am just offering him the opportunity to remember what it was like when he made comics just because he wanted to and how much joy it brought him to see his ideas come to life on paper. I want him to remember when comics made him happy rather than when they made him successful and to realize what he is really intending to walk away from.

More than anything,  I want to thank him for his inspiration. If there were no Dave Sim, I can safely say Bill Cucinotta and I would have never co-founded Comico and surely wouldn’t be making comics today. Thank you, Dave, and I hope all works out well for you.

Making Comics Because We Want to,

Gerry Giovinco


Ready to Launch!

Monday, April 16th, 2012

Paul Zdepski makes a big point to regularly mention that he was born during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Can you imagine coming into a world during a fleeting moment of international distress instigated by impending Armageddon?! Paul’s first experience with raw emotion was the collective anxiety of the entire world! Thankfully for us Paul has channeled that empathy through his comics and illustrations where he is able to focus on the distinct reactions that his characters have when faced with the challenges of life whether they be unusual or mundane.

Emulating that threat to our national defense Paul Zdepski has managed to fly under the radar of Bill Cucinotta and myself, hovering on the edge of our social and professional careers for over thirty years, waiting for the opportune moment to strike with his unique brand of creative genius.

Paul toured the periphery of our college escapades as we published DUCKWORK at the then Philadelphia College of Art. Classmates with Matt Wagner, Mike Leeke, Dave Johnson and Joe Matt, he held a pass to our social network that also included me, Bill, Joe Williams and Tina Garceau all would eventually have an impact on either  Comico and CO2 Comics or both.

During the heyday of Comico one of the most vibrant studios that produced work for us was Philadelphia based Bain Sidhe Studios, the creative realm where Matt Wagner, Bill Willingham, Rich Rankin, Joe Matt and Bill Cucinotta along with others, generated works for Comico, DC and Marvel. Paul was a welcomed guest in that circle as evidenced by the Comico swag he posts on his own blog.

When Bill and I began resurrecting our comic careers with CO2 Comics, Paul was one of our earliest followers, commenting on posts and chiming in on facebook pages. Now down in the Washington DC area Paul is a member of a productive group of indy comic creators called DC Conspiracy. A quick visit to his website will show what a busy and accomplished illustrator and educator Paul is.

The missile finally hit home when Paul announced that his mini comic SING-SING was awarded best Mini Comic/Short Story category of the year by S.P.A.C.E. Now in it’s 13th year, S.P.A.C.E. is the midwest’s largest exhibition of small press and creator owned comics. Sponsored by Back Porch Comics, the show’s held in Columbus,Ohio. This years presentation of S.P.A.C.E. will be held April 21 and 22.

Bill and I have always taken pride in our ability to spot and cultivate talented comic creators but somehow Paul managed to stealthily remain undetected while being in our own back yard the whole time. Now, much more than a blip on our screen, we are hoping the Paul Zdepksi will become a popular regular contributor to CO2 Comics, starting today with our proud presentation of his award winning mini comic SING SING!

Celebrating Thirty Years of Comics History!

Gerry Giovinco

COMICONOMY the Economics of Comics

Monday, January 30th, 2012

Pirates! Pirates everywhere!

It was just over a week ago when everyone was banding together to trash SOPA and PIPA. We can agree that, as creators, nobody likes pirates but we hated the idea of losing our rights to innocently pirate, ourselves. The idea of being shut down, fined or arrested for sharing music, images or video that we “borrow” for use  on our blogs and/or favorite social media brought together a nation of internet users that rallied to crush those bills and won an indefinite reprieve.

I guess we are all in agreement that it’s OK to pirate a little bit, so long as nobody is profiting directly from the pilfering. It is, after all, free advertising, right? As a creator, what could be better than seeing your work go viral and having the whole world find out about it besides, you know, being paid for it?

The real pirates, the bad guys, are the ones with those vicious torrent download sites, scanning entire issues of comics, ripping entire DVD’s of major motion pictures, and cataloging music by the truckload for downloads as mp3 files. Those guys are rapists! They literally rip the food right out of the creators’ mouths by preventing them from benefiting from sales that were lost to the downloaders. The downloaders are the pirates’ accomplices, they are pirates too, red handed with stolen goods and the first ones to share an innocent link or post tainted content.

So, SOPA and PIPA have been dead for barely two weeks and everyone is already screaming about how we have to take down the pirates. Comic artists everywhere are starving and nobody wants to pay for comics, especially if they can get them for free. What are we to do?

Kill the pirates! Shut them down!!

Please, just don’t use SOPA or PIPA.

Almost symbolically, good ol’ SEAL Team 6 heroically trashed a real-world, pirate compound in Somalia and rescued two aid workers that had been kidnapped. Nine pirates were killed. Everyone is happy!

This all got me to thinking. Pirates are a motivated lot, as are most bad guys. They don’t steal and plunder just for the fun of it. They do it  for the money. They gather up a ton of treasure and then they bury it on a deserted island. The downloader’s reward is free comics but the mastermind must be making a fortune to be willing to risk federal charges.

The pirates have figured out how to make money with comics while giving them away for free! Those rat bastards! If only we were that smart! Comic creators could be happy again.

Well Golly! Web comics have been using the same business model as the pirates for years now with varying degrees of success. We use it right here at CO2 Comics! Yet it is always a struggle to justify giving comic content away for free because it flies in the face of the old distribution system, the same system that has a stranglehold on the industry’s move to a digital market.  We are so afraid not to make a nice buck off a sale in a micro niche market that we are unwilling to make a small return on each sale in a potentially monolithic market or let graphically rich, free content drive streams of traffic through a sponsored website.

Free content drives every major website on the internet wether it is a search engine, a social network, a news agency or whatever. Who pays to use Google, Facebook, YouTube, Yahoo!,  Wikipedia, or Twitter? They are all among the top ten sites in the world and all worth BILLIONS of dollars! Content that is free to consumers has driven entertainment industries for decades. Newspapers,  radio, and television have all been huge beneficiaries of delivering free content.

Build a big enough comic reading audience in a free and open market and you will see the number of book sales begin to rise to numbers not heard of in decades. There is plenty of evidence that free web content has helped the sales of trades. Retailers will be happy to see a parade of new clientele march through their doors. We won’t have to read blog posts by comic artists crying duress driving down their power of negotiation to corporate publishing scum by playing a vulnerable hand. Free content also neutralizes piracy by taking away their only incentive to attract comic readers to their torrent sites.

Comic art has more value than we are daring enough to place on it. Let the work declare its own value and surprise yourself. Always remember that Disney is built on the back of Mickey Mouse and Time-Warner on the shoulders of Superman. Walt Disney believed in Mickey and let Mickey’ s success establish the worth of his company. Seigel and Schuster, in a fit of desperation,  sold Superman, a comic that nobody else wanted, for a lousy $130 and made someone else rich beyond their dreams.

Which creator would you like to be?

Let’s learn from the pirates. Comics are treasure even when they are free. We are in a position to command the destinies of our creative properties. Do not let senseless fear jeopardize the future of the industry. Take time to analyze and understand the market. Take control.

Celebrating Thirty Years of Comics History!

Gerry Giovinco

Eaten by Planet 29

Monday, April 18th, 2011

Some people are “old souls.” We’ve all encountered them, folks with an acute attraction and intuitive knowledge of a lifestyle or practice an earlier time. Their predisposition is an innate one that inspires theories of reincarnation.

Musicians, artists, engineers, scientists, architects and fashion designers top off a long list of vocations that are often peppered with these harbingers of the past that introduce new generations to nuances of a medium or a field that have lost or under appreciated over time.

One glance at the newest feature presented here at CO2 Comics will immediately drag you back to a bygone era of Golden Age comics.

Eaten by Planet 29

Kevin Atkinson’s EATEN BY PLANET 29 is so steeped in idioms of the most classic form of comics that one can’t help but begin to savor an imagined misty smell of newsprint conjured by the images pixelated by current technology on the computer screen.

Rogue Satellite Comics

Kevin’s greatest influences, Will Eisner and Robert Crumb are legendary in comics. His admiration for them and many other great masters of the field shines through his work from the lettering to the panel layouts, evidence of his education at Joe Kubert’s School of Comic Art.

A Texan background insures that Kevin’s characters are bigger than life, with exaggerated features and actions. His stories are fun and weird. All ingredients that make comics as a medium work best.

Kevin has been busy since he left Joe Kubert’s school in 1988, published by  BOOM Studios, Caliber Press, Eureka Productions, Kitchen Sink Press, NBM Publishing, New England Comics, Patchwork Press, Platinum Studios, Rip Off Press, &  Slave Labor Graphics.

Snarl, Rogue Satellite and The Tick

A comprehensive list of Kevin’s impressive credits can be seen on his Myspace page

CO2 Comics is proud to present his latest work EATEN BY PLANET 29. We hope our readers enjoy it as much as we enjoy bringing it to you.

Paradigm Shift in Comics

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

Deadlines, AAARGH!!!

Sometimes the stress of meeting a deadline can really get to you yet without the deadline some work will just never get done. The deadline is a necessary evil, especially in comics with monthly circulation schedules.

There's No Escape From A DEADLINE

Joe Williams and Tina Garceau do a nice job describing the perils in There’s No Escape From DEADLINE which can be read right here at CO2 Comics.

Back in the earlier days of comics one artist may have to hack out several comics in a month. Sometimes pools of artists would gather in a hotel room and jam to get an entire story done overnight. Guys like Joe Kubert can tell you stories like these all day long.

Joe Kubert, Photo Credit: Jim Salicrup for COMICS INTERVIEW

The worst part was that the pay was not so great considering all the work and talent that was necessary. This is why comics had long been considered the ghetto of the creative world.

Fans of CO2 Comics that have bought our first book David Anthony Kraft’s COMICS INTERVIEW: The Complete Collection Volume 1 get a great inside look at what the industry looked like prior to the early 1980’s through interviews with many artists that had been there from the beginning of the comic book industry.

COMICS INTERVIEW: The Complete Collection

At times pivotal moments will pop up that retrospectively changed the course of comics and continue to effect the industry today.

One of those moments is described by Joe Rosen who had been a letterer in the industry since 1940 and during the eighties was still a go-to guy in the Marvel Bullpen.

Joe Rosen

He explains how his perspective was that creators generally used comics as a stepping stone to hone their skills, make a couple of bucks then move into a more rewarding career in advertising.

Joe credits Marvel with creating an environment with enough successful product, reasonable pay and benefits associated with contracts that creators could finally want to make a career out of making comics.

When you consider the great talents of the Silver Age, however, you still see a significant turnover with only a handful of guys and gals that are staples.

During the eighties, when the Direct Market begins to dominate distribution of comics, another shift occurs.

Dick Giordano, in his interview, describes an industry that was in danger of running out of talent as the older creators were getting set to retire and so few were being prepared to rise up the ranks.

Dick Giordano

Joe Kubert who tells about his comic arts school in COMICS INTERVIEW, along with some classes by Burne Hogarth at the School of Visual Arts in New York were about the only places that even taught comics at the time.

Dick, while he was running the show at DC, instituted a workshop for young talent that he hoped would help fill the impending void.

The educational efforts of these gentlemen and others that followed, the implementation of the Creators Bill of Rights and the success of the Direct Market and the diversity of product inspired by Independent publishers created a fertile environment that began to make comics an attractive career choice.

Today the numbers of talented people that describe themselves as comic professionals is astounding compared to the expectations of Dick Giordano in 1983.

Though the Comics Industry can still be a difficult place to forge a career full of financial gain it provides an opportunity for success that was unheard of just thirty years ago.

Comics have gained a respect in the artistic community and can no longer be described as a creative ghetto.

Most importantly creators now make comics because they want to, not because it is a humbling stepping stone to a greater career.

I enjoy finding these paradigm shifts as I read through COMICS INTERVIEW. The eighties was such a period of transformation for the industry as a whole and COMICS INTERVIEW was able to look at the whole era from inside out while giving us a clear view of the past through the eyes of the creators that had been there since the forties.

One thing that will never go away, however, is the dreaded DEADLINE and I think I just barely met this one. (Sorry, Bill)

Making Comics Because I Want to!

Gerry Giovinco

Digital ComiCards™

Tuesday, February 15th, 2011

KISS, my ass!

That had to be what Diamond was thinking when they began unveiling their plans for digital distribution through comic shops. The convoluted program that included plexiglass holders for weekly printouts, Avery labels, a cryptographically secure method to generate random codes along with multiple pricing variations between print and digital product was enough to make heads spin. And that was just the beginning.

Diamond’s obvious disdain for the tried and true KISS principal is either evidence that they are overthinking the concept of digital distribution as it relates to comic shops or they have absolutely no clue as to what they are doing.

Keep It Simple, Stupid,” needs to be pounded, repeatedly in every discussion about digital distribution in comic shops or it is absolutely destined for failure. Digital downloads are simple, inexpensive, impulse products that scream convenience at every level. Complicating the process is just antithetical.

There is a very simple and proven way of giving the retailers the opportunity to cash in on digital downloads.

Gift Cards!

It is so glaringly obvious that when Bill Cucinotta and I first began researching it last year we emailed the idea to Steve Geppi himself because we figured that Diamond would have the best chance of implementing the program.

It must have gone to his SPAM file!

It was so obvious that Marvel had already issued a couple of gift cards for Marvel Digital that were available in regular stores!

Just a thought...

Nearly every major retailer in the country has gift card kiosks that feature a variety of cards for everything under the sun including downloads for video games and MP3 players. Raise your hand if you ever purchased an iTunes card for a gift or received one from a well meaning friend or relative that did not know what to get you.

Gift Cards are a multi-billion dollar business because they are simple, convenient and familiar.

Diamond should be partnering with one of the leading gift card program companies to distribute collectible gift cards that would function just like an iTunes card. The buyer can purchase a card in a $10, $20, $50 value all with an assortment of collectible images on them that would act as advertisements for various publishers. (Marvel would hope that if the card had Marvel characters the holder would download Marvel comics as would any other publisher) The card in reality would give the holder open access to the entire iBook Store or Android App Store and hopefully the holder will buy all kinds of comics.

Retailers would get a cut of every card sold, and God knows that speculators will cause the collectible cards to have inflated value over and above face value making them much more potentially profitable to retailers than initially intended.

Diamond could swing the cards into every gift card venue in the country promoting comics while creating a collector frenzy that could parallel Pokemon and Yugio.

It’s a simple idea. It is practiced over and over by every type of company. And it generates huge amounts of money.

Just imagine miniature comic book spinner racks with tiny plastic cards that feature comic covers sitting on a counter. It could be the most profitable square foot in the whole store and it is a POS impulse product.

Who wants to make some money?

Since Diamond has dropped the ball we are ready to run with it. We’ve already named the product Digital ComiCard™ and are looking financial partners to make it happen. If you are seriously interested contact Bill or me directly.

Diamond, we’d be happy to play with you but please, keep it simple!

Digital Comics do not have to leave the local comic shop behind. Let us
show you how.

Making comics because I want to.

Gerry Giovinco

Angel in the Cloud

Tuesday, February 8th, 2011

What a month January was for comic creators and fans.

Where the hell did it come from!

It was as if a giant frying pan just cracked the head of the collective conscience of an entire industry.

If you were hibernating in a cave to dodge “snowmageddon” maybe you missed it.

People in comics were talking. I mean real discussions with a revolutionary tone that challenged the industry’s ascent of the slippery slopes into the digital age.

Creator’s rights, distribution, marketing, diversity were all buzz words that spilled from blog to blog igniting a firestorm of comments filled with insightful observations, solutions, and opinions.

Thank you!

Follow the discussions here:

A little more on the Creator’s revolution


Grassroots creators support campaign begins

The Creator’s Front for Diversity in Comics puts out a hilarious video


What’s all this Creator-Owned talk?

Dear, Content Maker… by Dean Haspiel

Appless Comics

Working for a living: Joe Casey

The Not .99 Method

How to sell your book or comic for the ipad & iphone without Apples help

My big concern with comic downloads, The one thing nobody’s saying

2010 closed with comic creators and publishers exhibiting all the optimism of the Second Coming thanks to the iPad and its promises of broader distribution and fiscal opportunity. Wide-eyed and giddy there was a mad scramble for the Kool-Aid delivered in the form of apps distributed by the Almighty.

Maybe it is the spirit of Steve Gerber that has dashed to the rescue stirred by the parallels to his prophetic SOOFI.

Maybe it is just a sudden sense of independent empowerment.

Creators have snapped out of the trance and are recognizing the power of options that they have possibly taken for granted or have not fully explored.

Just in time!

No sooner has the aura faded, somewhat nefarious distribution standards have been established generating fears and doubts as we wade gingerly into the uncharted waters of digital distribution.

Let’s keep the discussion going! All we have in front of us as a comic industry is opportunity. Making the best of it is our challenge.

Thanks for the heads up, Steve!

Making Comics because I want to!

Gerry Giovinco


Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

There has been a lot of talk lately about a creator ownership revolution.

Are we kidding?!

Can we seriously refer to it as a revolution, now?

This whole idea of creator ownership and creator rights goes way back. What creator wouldn’t be hesitant to sell away the rights of their creation or just fritter it away on a work for hire contract, but hey, if you wanted to work in comics that’s how things were done.

Steve Gerber

Howard The Duck

The late Steve Gerber was the first guy I remember to have the guts to stand up and buck the system. The thumbing of his nose at Marvel who ironically was haggling trademark issues with the then adversarial Disney corporation over Steve’s brilliant creation, Howard the Duck, was the shot heard around the world for comic creators.

His collaboration with Jack Kirby on Destroyer Duck published by Eclipse Comics, an early Independent publisher, was an example of what was to come in regards to creator rights and ownership.

Destroyer Duck 1

Jack Kirby

Jack Kirby of course was the King of comic creators and he too required the support of comic creators everywhere in a battle for his rights which has yet to be settled years after his passing.

Creators have fought the good fight. They have educated themselves on copyright issues. They have marketed their works, self published, merchandised, licensed and have experimented with formatting in both print and digital.

Creators have brought diversity to the medium exploring genres well beyond superheroes. Their efforts have been awarded with film deals and other opportunities never afforded to comic creators back in the day.

This dynamic climate for creators has been in the making for over thirty years. It’s not a revolution, its a resolution to what was unfair in the industry for decades.

So why all of the sudden rhetoric? Why all of the jitters?

Because there is an air of complacency.

Distribution is one of the key ingredients to independence for the creator. The early days of the Direct Market, made it a haven for independent publishers and innovative creators. Without the Direct Market there would be no diversity in comics today. Marvel and DC have been happy to let a small niche of unique product proliferate but have always been quick to flood the market when there were signs of significant competition rising.

The Direct Market is suffocating as the demand for print shrinks and the biggest casualties will be the small publishers that publish the creator owned works, inciting an exodus to digital content distributors.

These same distributors have access to an enormous library of Marvel and DC works. If the big two were happy to flood the market of the monthly pull list, do you think they would care if they drowned the digital market with 70 years of available monthly content?

Remember, this is not just Marvel and DC we are talking about. Those guys in the New York offices actually love comics and probably enjoy a lot of the diverse content out there but Warner Brothers and Disney will need and want to protect their intellectual properties.

The best way to guarantee that Superman and Spidey have no competition is to make sure there can be none.

Comics are too easy to produce, publish and distribute compared to any other visual entertainment medium. Its too easy for another Mutant TurtleSpawn, Scott Pilgrim, or Wimpy Kid to sneak up and take market dollars.

TMNT, Spawn, Scott Pilgrim, Wimpy Kid

It is naive to think that the monster corporations are not intent on controlling digital distribution.

Revolution? No.

Wake up call?


Creators have got to be smart and protect the market for each other. We need to focus on innovative ways to market comics to the new generation of digital readers. Keep the sources open. Capitalize on the web. Be creative about sourcing revenue from free content as well as monetized downloads.
Be a community.

Beware of the competition. It is not each other. It is the super powers that be.

Most of all, value your creative freedom. It has been fought for for decades. Now is the time that we may have the greatest opportunity in front of us.

Let’s not let it slip away.

Making comics because I want to!

Gerry Giovinco

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