I have a few things I'd like to rant about if people will entertain my thoughts...
1. Who is buying/reading/collecting comics besides me? What titles do you like right now?
2. The Slow Death and Immense Decay of Comics as we have come to know them...
3. I love comics as a creator and a reader and a collector. I hope something is done to promote the industry better and to make comics more accessible to the average Joe.
Great post. I agree with your take on the comic industry: peaked in the late 80s, early 90s and has been decreasing ever since...
1) - I'd recommend ANYTHING by Geoff Johns. IMHO, the guy is one of the best writers out there. He currently writes JSA, HAwkman, and The Flash for DC and his Avengers run at Marvel was great!
The guy knows and loves the Silver age feel and tries to bring the Silver Age story-telling into the books (not always the characters, but the sense of story first, hype second).
2) Marvel did mess things up. Thanks again McFarlane Spidey (the beginning of the end!)
3) - I think that DC tries harder thatn Marvel to recruit new readers. They have a whole line of Cartoon Network comics as well as the "Animated" style books for the Teen Titans, JLA, Superman, and Batman.
A few years back, I wouldn't have wanted my 6-yr old and 8-yr old nephews reading comics because the content was a bit too mature, but DC's line of JL Universe and Animated Batman adventures are great for kids (which are tomorrows comics generation). My wife and I bought my nephews subscriptions to those "animated" style books and they love them! There is hope out there.
Also, DC does a much better marketing tie-in with comics because of the cross breeding with the WB/AOL/Time-Warner. They can use the WB cartoons and cartoon network to advertise their comics. I have noticed that in WB stores, there are DC comics as well as mentions of big DC Comic stories in Time/Warner magazines like Entertainment Weekly.
I think they are improving in getting comics back out there into stores like B&N, Target, and other places.
Marvel, however, yeesh. Ugh. Marvel needs to focus more on hyping comics when movies are hot. I can't believe that Spiderman the Movie made $400 million, but sales on the books only went up 2%? Huh? Why aren't the kids buying the books?
I really think Marvel needs to stop with the "Marvel Max" and "Marvel Knights" crap and start producing books that are appropriate for kids. Kids need a book where Spider-man fights Electro and not discusses his marraige with MJ or other "adult" junk. I wish Marvel would introduce a more "cartoony" line for kids.
Ultimates was a way to re-boot the Marvel universe for new readers, but eventually lead to the same crappy places: love-triangle with Cyke/Jean/Logan, etc. They focus too much on character relationships for kids I think.
Back in my day, (uh oh, here it comes) Barry liked Iris, Hal liked Carol, Clark liked Lois, etc. Buth the girl always like the alter-ego. That way you didn't have to deal with the whole Superman and Lois might get divorced crap.
Anyway, Just my $0.02,