Thursday, November 13, 2008

Is Pick On Didio Day Over?

Cuz I just wanted to sneak these bits in:

People seem to identify this problem as being unique to DC, but I would argue that it happens across the entire industry. I would argue that no matter what your expectations are every week, those expectations are unfortunately broken. I would argue that this problem is unique to the business.
Sure, it happens everywhere. But you, Mr. Didio, were those most emphatic about scheduling issues getting fixed. Marvel made the decision that it won't put fill-in artists on a major event and stuck to it. Quesada has said they'd do everything they can on scheduling issues, but did not feel that sacrificing quality for timeliness was an acceptable trade-off.

DC, on the other hand, lets their events run fairly late and then STILL uses fill-in artists. You have to pick a course and stick to it. If you're willing to use fill-ins, then try to have artists ready to fill-in, rather than wait until you're sacrificing both quality (in as much as lack of consistency in art styles) and timeliness.

As Mr. Miyagi said:

"Left side road? OK. Right side road? OK. Middle of road? (SLAP) Squish like grape."

Pick an approach that satisfies timeliness or satisfies quality issues, rather than satisfying neither.

Regarding the use of the multiverse:

DD: The real answer – I just don’t want to approach it in a haphazard manner. Being incredibly candid, I want Grant Morrison to have first crack at it. So realistically, the multiverse is Grant’s toy to play with and use as he likes. I want Grant, when he becomes available, to do the first and best exploration of the mutliverse. He has the best grasp of the concept, and the interpretations that I feel matter.

Geoff did a wonderful job for the Earth-2 story he did in JSA recently, but Grant has so many fabulous ideas for the multiverse that we’re going to wait for him.

That's right. It is an incredibly wise idea to wait for the guy who's work ethic more or less led to you needing to bring in Doug Mahnke to finish Final Crisis and who wants to go off and do Vertigo for awhile. I'm sure we'll get to see that in a reasonable amount of time with the customer base just as anxious and excited to see it.

All that said, I like Didio and think he often gets too much shit from fans (and told him as much at Wizard World Chicago...twice...while drunk). There's just obvious room for improvement.


  1. I dont see whats the big deal if a book is a little late. I've been collecting for years and a book being late didnt stop me from picking it up. Even with sub artists, I liked Pacheo on Final Crisis and cant wait for next issue. As far as waiting on GM to do Multiverse stories...BRING BACK THE JOKESTER!!!


  2. Here's one example of how it matters to the readers if the book is late:

    You're a person that exercises responsible thinking regarding your money. You plan a budget and include your comic purchases in said budget. If a book slips from its schedule (which, it should be noted, have to be turned in to PREVIEWS three months in advance in order to solicit two months in advance), then that can affect all of the other books around it.

    As a consumer, your own personal budget is then screwed up. Sure, it may only be $3 or $4. But in the case of some events, that can alter five or more books, running up a dealy that results in a week with $20 or more extra. That CAN screw up a budget, and the consumer hasn't done anything wrong.

  3. Jesus Christ I'm tired of people bitching about comics & lateness & how it screws over the consumer. Jesus wept it's a fucking $2.99 COMIC BOOK. Tights n' flights. The notion that a delayed book in any way screws over a consumer is just assinine. If a comic book throws off your budget that much, & "screws you over," then you either a) shouldn't be buying them because you can't afford it or b) need to re-examine what the fuck else you're spending your money on.

    Comics are between $2.99 & $4.99 for most single issues. That's less than a McDonald's combo meal. That's less than a movie ticket. That's less than the cost of a DVD rental. Comics are still, by & large, one of the most affordable forms of entertainment out there.

    The last poster sounded so anal retentative & uptight that I would bet if you put a lump of coal up his ass in two weeks you'd have a diamond*, & you could buy all the comics you wanted.

    *With thanks to Ferris Bueller

  4. @Zodcomplex: Comics are still one of the most affordable if you look at simple gross amounts of cash -- but for the amount of "content" you're getting, comics are OUTRAGEOUSLY overpriced.

    In a few months, we'll be paying $3.99 for 1/6th of a story. Think about that -- you'll be paying around $24 for one full story arc. By your comparisons, I can eat 4 McDonald's combo meals, see TWO movies and still have cash left over, or rent 6 movies.

  5. Right. Except you get to keep the comic & read it as many times as you want. You have to return those movies to Netflix, drop another $20 on the DVD if you'd like to watch that movie that you saw in the theatre again (& again, & again) and no matter how hard you might try not to, you're going to have to shit out that double cheeseburger & fries at some point.

    Comics - you get to keep them for life, & they won't give you a fat ass. :)

  6. I dunno Zod... there's plenty of circumstantial (not to mention circumferencial) evidence that says they *do* give you a fat ass.

  7. I tried to say this earlier, but Blogger shit the bed:

    Not to be anal retentive, Zod, but I can see a movie at an AMC $5 anytime Mon-Thurs (and before 4pm Fri-Sun) and rent a wide selection of DVDs for less than $5 a pop.

    Since comic books rarely appreciate in value and the desire to re-read varies wildly from reader-to-reader and product-to-product, I'm not entirely convinced that being able to possess it longer than a Big Mac is that big of a difference. And, if it is at all possible, a comic book has less nutritional value than a Happy Meal. ;)

  8. So you're saying comics need a special sauce?

    Sure, you can rent for $5, but not purchase, & that's the difference, regardless of whether a comic increases in value or what your "re-read" liklihood is. You get to walk away with it. Movie theatres don't hand you the reel when the show's over, & those DVDs better get to back to Netflix or they'll bill you, usually more than what the DVD would cost you in the store.

    I get the point you're trying to make, but the economic reality is that you're walking away with the book in hand & that adds to the overall value.

  9. Not to get in the middle of the other debate, be sure to check out my Cacophony review tomorrow at Broken Frontier, I will be touching on the other side of the editorial problems at DC.

  10. Zod, I'm not wrapped up in either side of the debate, so we can leave it at that. ;)

    Lee, feel free to drop a link over here when it goes up, sir.

  11. What does Doug Mankhe, artist, have to do with Grant Morrison, writer? I'm confused.

    -Fucktwat The Clown

  12. Apparently, Fucktwat (if that is your real name), you missed where Dan Didio said the reason for needing to switch to Mahnke was because of how late Morrison was turning in the final revisions on the scripts for 6 & 7 of the event. JG Jones would have never have been able to get it all done in time, hence Doug Mahnke's addition to the art team.

  13. Fucktwat the ClownSat Nov 15, 12:02:00 AM EST

    So the problem isnt with the quality of his writing, but with the lateness? Call me crazy but I'd rather have a well-written story than a steaming pile of shit delivered in a timely fashion.

  14. Try to follow here, Fucktwat:

    DC makes a big deal about committing to on-time delivery.
    DC delivers late product and STILL uses fill-ins rather than waiting for the intended creative team.
    So they sacrifice the overall quality of the product for little-to-no benefit.

    I didn't like it at the time, but Marvel delayed a lot of product to have Civil War done by the same team from the opening until the ending. How'd it turn out? Marvel's holding an even larger market share advantage. I'm not saying cause and effect, but they're successful with that strategy.

  15. Kevin... the url to the Cacophony review:


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