Monday, April 12, 2004

The Day of 9-Page Threads 

Well two big things happened in the comics and anime worlds respectively. Marvel started up the Icon imprint for Powers and Kabuki and Kodocha (Kodomo no Omocha aka Sana's State) got licensed by Funimation.

The biggest thread on Icon I've seen thus far seems to be at Newsarama. I actually read all 9 pages and between the various good and bad posts were a lot of copies of official postings by all the parties involved providing some more solid information. So, what do I think?

Well, it does seem like Image will still be fine, but not so good for public perceptions. It is nice that Marvel is aparantly doing a creator-owned label with no strings attached (seems like Marvel has not rights for licensing or movies), but it remains to be seen how many other titles will actually come into this imprint. For now, it seems very much like a special case as a reward for some of the more popular Marvel creators. It'll be interesting to see how much the move affects sales numbers on these titles.

Also, just to re-iterate something a lot of people seem to be missing, while details haven't been revealed it seems likely it is somewhat similar to the Image setup, where Marvel charges a fee for printing, distribution and publicity while the creators work on their own time and get the rest of the profits. While there might be some sort of upfront payment to Bendis et. all (and that is by no means certain), I'm sure it is nothing like the usual work-for-hire rates. If you keep in mind that creator costs is one of the major parts of the cost of putting together a comic book, Marvel has a lot less to worry about when it comes to breaking even. They could probably sell significantly less copies than they are now and still have no worries of cancellation.

This sort of thing is also why Image's bottom line won't hurt too much. There might be a percentage of sales for Marvel (or not), but in Image's case it is a flat rate. Image gets the same amount or money for a comic, no matter how much it sells. Image could replace these with any other titles and still make as much momey.

The other big thread is on animeondvd.com For those of you not into the fandom, it probably doesn't seem like that big of a deal, but this has been one of those series that fans have been clamoring for for years, and one of those "It will NEVER be licensed" titles. One more sign of the apocalypse comes to pass! ;)

Kodocha is a really fun title, one where if you read the plot, you'd probably figure that you wouldn't like it. The original manga is already coming out, but I think this is a title where being animated gives it something a bit extra. The energy and craziness just about pops off the screen. If Funimation manages to get Kodocha on television, that'd be quite an amazing day, especially if it manages to be relatively unedited (the series has no nudity or graphic violence, but sometimes does address serious issues).

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