Tags: Coronavirus | marvel | comicbooks | DCComics

COVID-19 Slams Comic Book Industry

the man of steel's costume is on display, without the man
A Superman costume from the 2013 Man of Steel film worn by Henry Cavill  on display in 2018. (Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

By    |   Monday, 20 April 2020 07:55 PM

Not even Superman seems able to rescue the comic book industry from COVID-19, which has hit the classic genre with the force of a collision with an asteroid of pure kryptonite.

Diamond Comic Distributors, the giant firm which posted $529.7 million in sales in 2019, has stopped producing new comics, Steve Geppi, head of Diamond, told The Guardian.

Even massive DC Comics and Marvel Comics are struggling, with Marvel laying off half of its staff on furloughs  and cutting 20 per cent of its planned books.

Comics largely are sold through comic book stores, but the current pandemic-related economic slump in the comics game have caused most, if not all, shops to close, and many may never reopen. In the insular comic book world, comics shops serve as gathering places for comics fans – with the shops gone, much of the social impact driving sales disappears.

Ron Hill, owner of New York shop Jim Hanley’s Universe, told The Guardian that publishers may abandon print altogether. “There’s a lot of fear that they’re going to go ahead and release comics digitally and leave us behind, and continue to release comics into the market when we’re not able to participate.”

Heidi MacDonald, editor of The Beat, a comics culture website, told the Columbus Dispatch, “I do think this is an extinction-level event. It’s life-changing for everyone. This is a whole industry that lived on very thin margins. There’s no port in this storm.”

There is, or was, major money involved. The New York Times notes that industry trackers Comichron and ICvs report that the industry in the US and Canada top $1 billion, with print comics contributing over a third of that amount and digital sales adding up to about $100 million.

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Not even Superman seems able to rescue the comic book industry from COVID-19, which has hit the classic genre with the force of a collision with an asteroid of pure kryptonite....
marvel, comicbooks, DCComics
307
2020-55-20
Monday, 20 April 2020 07:55 PM
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