Comic Store In Your Future, All-Hail New Overlord of Marvel Comics Kevin Feige
Rod Lamberti, comic store owner of Rodman Comics writes weekly for Bleeding Cool. Find previous columns here.
Marvel now has Kevin Feige as Chief Creative Officer, who will oversee Marvel publishing. What will change, if anything, is anyone's guess. After C. B. Cebulski took over Axel Alonso's as Editor in Chief nothing noticeably changed in my eyes as a comic store owner. I often wonder why Axel was not just left as Editor in Chief.
I have never gotten the feeling that Kevin cared much for the source material of Marvel's movies–the comic books. I have read that he did not want to deal with the comic creative team's influence on the movies and that was part of the reason their influence on the movies was done away with. Back when Brian Michael Bendis was working for Marvel, he was a part of the Marvel Creative Committee. At the time it was made up of some of Marvel's comic book talent to help with the Marvel movies. Bendis even wrote the Iron Man post-movie credit scene that had Nick Fury show up to talk with Tony Stark. After the Marvel Creative Committee was done away with Bendis would no longer be able to work on Marvel movies.
As a comic retailer, what would I like to see? How about Kevin asking why are we publishing so many comics. I would like to see a tightening of the publishing line. How many Spider-Man titles are needed in a year? Too many Star Wars movies is what Disney tried to say hurt the Solo movie. So, let's apply this logic to comic publishing.
What are the standards for Marvel's publishing line? Currently an anything-goes mentality seems to exist.
Improve sales. Marvel movies are expected to sell a lot of movie tickets. Marvel comics not so much in terms of sales.
Tighter continuity. Marvel movies have continuity. Marvel comics play off short term continuity for crossovers though often lack any real continuity after the next creative team comes along. Continuity can build up peoples' reading experience of Marvel comics.
Have standards. How many copies should a mainstream Marvel comic book sell? How many titles should there be for the year? How is Marvel improving the talent working on the comics? How can Marvel comics improve the quality of its titles? Have the editor on a comic title have actual power over the book, the ability to be the boss and guide a title to be better.
Experiment and see what works and what does not.
Will Kevin even take enough of an interest in Marvel publishing to make changes? Marvel movies make a ton of money and overshadows Marvel's publishing line. Kevin may even wonder why they are still publishing comics.
I do hope to see positive changes. There could be a lot of changes or nothing at all. Time will tell.