Comic book website The Outhouse, which operated outside of the bounds of the traditional incestuous relationship between comic book publishers and the media who covers them for 13 years, will shut down on February 7th, 2019, just one week from now. Site owner Lord Simian revealed the news in a post on the site Thursday, though in typical fashion, news had already leaked to the site's forum posters. The site survived for all that time with no corporate backing and no real funding aside from a brief period where Bill Jemas's Double Take paid the site for "advertising," which was not the worst decision Bill Jemas has ever made (Trouble, Marville), but certainly comes close. Sources tell me the site's money troubles began when an intern forgot to pay the webhosting bill for January, resulting in a debt spiral from which they can never recover.
"They tell me, Vlad, take this money and pay site bill," said unpaid intern Vlad Kozinkerov, normally an extremely reliable character. "But that is not what I do. I am sick of doing what I am told. Instead, I send money to my sister in Russia so nephew can have new wooden leg after it was chewed off by family bear."
Tough luck that this was the one time Vlad chose to take a stand, but we're glad his family is doing well. It's unknown at this time whether the bear was actually Dan Slott.
Under the leadership of Jude Terror (that's me) and Christian Hoffer (who currently writes about Pokemons and Dragons for ComicBook.com and co-runs The MNT), The Outhouse launched a "snarky news initiative" in 2011 which relentlessly mocked the comic book industry, comic book "journalism," and comic book fans, earning the site an outright blacklisting from DC Comics and an implicit blacklisting by Marvel. But in one of the most valuable lessons the site leaves behind as part of its legacy, a lack of official PR support from comic book publishers doesn't make any difference in a website's ability to cover the products released by those publishers; in fact, it actually makes it easier, since there's no threat of losing access to the creators and publicity materials that provide content for the clickbait fluff interviews, reviews, and promotional pieces which attract the clicks which earn the revenue which (barely) sustains the whole business.
I left the Outhouse in 2017, ending up here at Bleeding Cool when they made me an offer of more than zero dollars to do what I do, something I didn't actually realize was possible before then. And now that The Outhouse is shutting down, that means they can never take me back, so you're all stuck with me forever. Perhaps that's The Outhouse's final revenge on all of you.
I understand that Tim Midura, the inferior Jude Terror replacement who took over in 2017 (just kidding, he's my beloved protege), will launch a new site with some of the site's other writers, including sdsichero, who specializes in reporting on comics and anime, and Zechs, the site's official My Little Pony correspondent. It's unclear if other longtime writers like SuperginraiX or GLX will go with them. That site's new name and address have yet to be announced, but we'll let you know when it does go live. In fact, we'll do our best to scoop them on it, just to make sure they know their place.
"Yer bloody roight Oi will," said Bleeding Cool Rumourmonger-in-Chief Uncle Rich Johnston. "Pip pip."
If you're looking to keep tabs on other Outhouse alumni and you're not already tracking them as part of an assignment for the CIA, you can find Jesse (Mr. Black) at Robots With Coffee. GHERU can be found doing his thing at My Asshole Office Mate. Former teen rapper and forum admin Houman Sadri (nietoperz) can be found at the GetPop Popular Culture Podcast. I hear Gavin Dillinger may have a comic coming out in the future. And just follow Ali Jaffery on Twitter. Trust me, it's worth it. Many other site contributors now write for respected comic book websites as well, proving once and for all there's no career low you can't recover from. Some of the forum posters will be looking for a new home, and there aren't many comic book forums left. I hope they find ways to remain connected with each other. They can always join the Disqus comments section right here at Bleeding Cool if they don't mind contracting syphilis.
In the six years that I wrote the majority of the site's content, I enjoyed my time there and enjoyed interacting with the people. Well, most of them. @#$% you, Achilles. I encourage them to email me or find me on Twitter — contact info is in my profile below — if they want to shoot the breeze.
Oh, and one more thing. You're probably wondering what will happen to the site's famous offshoot, the Has DC Done Something Stupid Today counter. Well, good news. I'm taking over that. And I'm resetting it right away in honor of The Outhouse's passing and because Dan Didio is still employed. It has been zero days, Outhousers! RIP.