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WAITING FOR TOMMY
By Richard Johnston

Earlier this week I received an e-mail from Dynamic Forces head man, Nick Barrucci. It was cc'ed to a number of comics luminaries and it created quite a discussion. It's been reprinted in this column, and may well start an ongoing feature. I'm interested if anyone out there has any Photoshop skills they'd like to donate? E-mail me on rich@twistandshout.freeserve.co.uk. I've got a cunning plan. More on that at the end of the column...

Now, clearly I was only privy to the discussions that went to everyone on the list, and I'm aware of a few private e-mails between people involved, even including little old me. But this is still entertaining, illuminating and in some places quite inspiring. Enjoy. or at least tolerate.

NICK BARRUCCI: Dear Fellow Friends,

I'm asking for a quick favor. If you can please read this, and if you agree with my thoughts or opinions - please send this out to as many other people as you can. And please post on your websites if possible: http://www.newsarama.com/Nick1.htm

The grass roots movement would be awesome!

Please let me know what you think!

[And as ever, I decided to ignore whatever Nick was wittering on about and went for the cheap dig. Dynamic Forces and Newsarama had famously fallen out when Newsarama left Comicon for Kevin Smith's servers, despite what Dynamic Forces thought their agreement was (and what Newsarama didn't.)]

RICHARD JOHNSTON: Good to see the Dynamic Forces/Newsarama rift is healed... or is it????

NICK BARRUCCI: Well, in a way, that's not the point, but thanks for asking. Yes, DF has a good working relationship with Newsarama, but this interview is bigger than whether or not we get along. And if you like what you read, please post in as many places as possible to get more people reading and please e-mail to all fellow fans who you think that this can affect. This is a one step at a time deal, and one person at a time movement, and as an industry, we can all use all the help we can get.

[Mark Millar was the first to take this seriously and he kicked off.]

MARK MILLAR: Fan-bloody-tastic, Italian. Consider it up on the site!

NICK BARRUCCI: Thanks man! One step at a time, we're going to turn this into the most electrifying industry in entertainment, or at least have fun trying!!!!! (Yeah, right, fun :-)

MARK MILLAR: We're cheap to produce, take more risks than movies, games or TV and are fast becoming a fashion accessory again. Best of all, we're the perfect petri-dish for any production company looking to option or make the next big thing. How can we fail? By the middle to the end of this decade, comic creators will be the new dot.com billionaires. The potential is outrageous.

[And so, naturally, I went on a bit of a downer. All this positivity was far too depressing.]

RICHARD JOHNSTON: Remember what happened to dot.com billionaires. The price of being fashionable, is becoming pogs... Okay, okay, voice of cynicism, but I remember Triumphant, Ultraverse, CGW, and tonnes of sh*te comics from Marvel, DC, Valiant and Image when the boom hit.

If there is a boom, I hope it's built on content which is sustainable, as opposed to variant covers, spinoffs, high concepts, which is not.

[Mark Millar knocked me back.]

MARK MILLAR: Comic guys are the only industry on Earth afraid of a boom because a boom might mean inevitable bust!!!! Sure, it'll inevitably peak and slide down the other end of the parabolic curve just like the nineties, the seventies and the fifties, but with proper planning we can make it last and make sure a healthy industry is there at the end of it. Just remember that Liefeld personally made 20 million dollars in 1992. Being unfashionable in 2014 is a price worth paying if you're ultra-fashionable in 2006. The pogs guys are billionaires.

NICK BARRUCCI: And all I can say is - quality with bells and whistles is fine. Sh*t with bells and whistles will stink. Look at Friends when they have an event - they can get Bruce Willis to appear on a few episodes. It's a stunt to get more viewers. But it's a well done stunt on a well written and well acted TV Show, so bells and whistles are fine in comics if the comics are good!

Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 Continued Here...

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