Tuesday, October 21, 2008

One Retailer's Perspective on Final Crisis #7

So the solicits for DC are up, and Final Crisis #7 is being done by Doug Mahnke instead of JG Jones. This has apparently caused some kind of uproar, and there's a very self-effacing mea culpa from Jones at CBR.

Jones shows a lot of class in apologizing, although I doubt that's going to assuage the anger of fans who see yet another big tentpole project running late and delivering something other than what was promised at the outset (7 issues of Morrison and Jones on DC's big event). It's also not terribly helpful in terms of the lateness affecting sales, and how that affects retailers.

However... Jones should totally be let off the hook on this one. And you know why?

Because it's not his fault. Hands up, anyone who actually believed that JG Jones would complete this project on the monthly schedule DC promised, based on past performance? OK, everyone who works at DC editorial can put your hands down. Anybody else?

To put it in a less snarky way, this is the fault of an over-enthusiastic or delusional or (more likely) cynical marketing and editorial team, who either fooled themselves into thinking that a Morrison/Jones project involving tons of cross-editorial continuity wouldn't require any kind of extra time to work on, or who realized it would be late, but figured that the industry had grown so accustomed to it that they wouldn't do anything but gripe on message boards and buy it anyway.

If anyone deserves finger-pointing here, it's DC editorial and marketing. But hey, they gave retailers FOC to knock down orders if this actually does affect fan enthusiasm and sales, so I've got no particular gripe. And my interest in the DC Universe as a fan has been an increasingly casual, mostly rubber-necking at a car wreck kind of thing since Identity Crisis, so as a fan, I've got no real issues either.

1 comment:

Chris Hunter said...

"To put it in a less snarky way, this is the fault of an over-enthusiastic or delusional or (more likely) cynical marketing and editorial team, who either fooled themselves into thinking that a Morrison/Jones project involving tons of cross-editorial continuity wouldn't require any kind of extra time to work on, or who realized it would be late, but figured that the industry had grown so accustomed to it that they wouldn't do anything but gripe on message boards and buy it anyway."

Exactly.

Both Marvel and DC are becoming more and more like this and it hacks me off to no end.

If you're going to do a series with creators like JG Jones, Frank Quitely, and other slow, but talented, artists, you've got to give them more time to work ahead.

That, or just let someone else do the entire series that has a proven track record of being a monthly artist.

Or you just give the slow artists miniseries to work on that have no big connection to anything going on in current continuity AND THEN you wait until they have it ALL completed before you solicit it.

I think it was Bob Schreck that was the editor for Kevin Smith when Smith relaunched Green Arrow and in interviews, Schreck explained that he didn't even give the script to the artist until he had 12 scripts in his hand from Smith.

WISE editor, to say the least...