Monday, April 3, 2017

Marvel Sales Slump

I haven't commented on this mostly because I thought it was an April Fool's joke. Nope, I just heard about it a day later. What Marvel thinks is responsible for their lower sales.

I thought companies were supposed to have a better idea of their audiences. Say what you will about DC with the New 52 but they made an effort to know and listen to their customers. There were surveys, they asked retailers and even looked online. It took a while but they kept trying until they got it right. Do taste change? In some ways yes, many for (random) example didn't like Chris Clarmont's later work (which was years ago) because it felt dated. But there are things fans don't want to change because their so deeply ingrained in the characters and universe.
Relationships are paramount and fans hated having friendships and marriages broken up. DC learned from this and now we have Lois and Clark together again. Meanwhile Marvel still refuses to listen to it's readers and continues to have Peter Parker written as an eternal man-child (which isn't what Spider-Man is about.) The only time Peter gets to be married to Mary Jane is in an out of canon series that only exists at the expense of the May "Mayday" Parker character and MC2 universe. Marvel has been pointedly ignoring all demands regarding these characters for years.
Beloved characters aren't treated with respect. I've heard from countless fans that they thought Thor (Jane) was an insulting execution and many hate how Captain Marvel (Carol) was written during Civil War 2. Not to mention the Hydra plot and the many events that derail other titles.
These answers flip flop like he's either trying not to ruffle feather (and failing) or he's just confused in general. Starting by saying "no, I don't think so" to taste changing to a "maybe you're right" at the end of the same paragraph. They apparently heard this but their not sure, except they claim to see it in the sales. Which is it? You either know or you don't and this doesn't seem very conclusive to me. 
Fans are open to female characters and diversity when they are written well instead of cardboard cut outs. They don't mind these characters as long as their not at the expense of other characters. DC example: many aren't fond of Bluebird because of her forced importance and side-lining the Robins. Not because she's female. At Marvel I can easily think of one character that's female and has a diverse background. Ms Marvel, and unless I missed something she's popular. Unlike DC Marvel doesn't seem to be listening to their audience, they don't seem to put the value on the characters or learning. That in my opinion is their problem not female characters and/or diversity.


  1. Just write WELL, and your problems will be solved. They don't seem able to grasp this.

  2. Right. In Marvels' case the fans have been telling them for years what the problems at but they don't listen.