It's an attempt to list the most powerful people working in the English speaking comic book marketplace. It's judged by all manner of attributes, the ability to influence what comics exist and sell, but also the willingness to use that power and the ability to retain said power if one aspect is taken away – a job, a gig or a prominent role. Which is why you will see a number of people on a higher spot than their bosses.
The Power List rewards those who combine roles, those who are double and triple threats and also where power is concentrated in one person or perceived identity. But it also notes certain teams who work together, who've built up a joint identity, a gestalt more powerful than the sum of their parts. Some powerful organisations or groups, where power is diffused amongst many, drop down or drop out altogether.
It does not measure talent or likeability and also does not intend to represent diversity. All it does is note power, used for the betterment – or the detriment – of comics.
The list has been created in consultation with a number of senior figures in the comics industry. However, I'm aware the one thing that can be guaranteed is that everyone will think it's wrong and prefer their own take. Including all of those who were consulted.
There will be a new post every day on Bleeding Cool. We'll run the previous ones below as well, so, in reverse order…
13. Jeph Loeb (UP)
Screenplay writer (Teen Wolf and Commando) who wanted to work in comics, Loeb made a big name for himself. But when that career faltered critically, he gained new respect as producer and writer on Smallville and Heroes. Head hunted by Marvel for their TV line, Agents Of SHIELD was very much down to Loeb, and he pushed that forward into Agent Carter and the Netflix shows. While there was always a political division between TV and film at Marvel, the recent coup that saw Kevin Feige wrest Marvel Films from the rest of Marvel Comics – but keep Marvel TV – was a boon for Jeph Loeb's influence on the comic books, as Marvel look to reflect the attention brought to the TV shows, with Agents Of SHIELD, Inhumans, Daredevil, Luke Cage, Power Man and more filling the shelves.
Position in next year's list depends upon: Reprioritising Inhumans at Marvel.
12. David Gabriel (DOWN)
It may have been meant as a joke. But the announcement that David Gabriel, Senior Vice President of Sales at Marvel, once made that there was a scheduled character death every quarter to bump up sales has held true at the publisher ever since. The man who founded the New York City Comic Book Museum back in 1999 is in carge of pushing the public perception of the Marvel superhero across media, and has considerable editorial input as well to create the kind of comics that he can make everything sit up and take notice of.
Next year's position depends upon: Dan Buckley retiring to the Seychelles.
11. Scott Snyder (SAME)
The golden boy writer at DC, his lack of an exclusive contract may make his publisher nervous but it also makes negotiations more one sided, as the occasional threat to leave can work wonders with an editorial or creative decision. Creating his own oasis of content at the publisher, writing their best selling comic and inviting creatives in to the fold, he is also working on comic book education and outreach, finding new writers and artists and supporting their journey, shielding them from editorial and marketing excesses. That he can spun his success out into one of Image's biggest selling comic books, Wytches doesn't make him big-headed though. Even though he could probably do with a little self-aggandizing every now and then.
Next year's position depends upon: Whether he sets up his own Snyderworld line – and what happens when he leaves Batman.
#100-#98 – Dennis Barger, Janelle Asselin, Matthew Rosenberg
#97-#95 – Rich Johnston, Marc Silvestri, James Killen
#94-#92 – Jim Demonakos, Tim Buckley, Gahl Buslov
#91-#89 – Rob Liefeld, Peter Dolan, Catlin DiMotta
#88-#86 – Ken Levin, David Alpert, Kate Leth
#85-#83 – Jason Aaron, Stephen Christy, Jon Goldwater
#82-#80 – Stan Lee, Lorelei Bunjes, Marc Toberoff
#79-#77 – Jason Kingsley, Fiona Staples, Neal Adams
#76-#74 – Jim Sokolowski, Robbie Robbins, Corey Murphy
#73-#71 – Greg Capullo, Neil Gaiman, Art Baltazar & Franco
#70-#68 – Nemesis 43, Chris Powell, Mike Armstrong
#67-#65 – Hank Kanalz, Chuck Parker, John Rogers
#64-#62 – Alan Moore, Fred Pierce, John Wurzer
#61-#59 – Kate Beaton, CB Cebulski, Charles Soule
#58-#56 – Jeff Lemire, Matt Gagnon, Gail Simone
#55-#53 – Grant Morrison, Dinesh Shamdasani, Nicola Barrucci
#52-#50 – Skottie Young, William Christensen, Brian Azzarello
#49-#47 – Warren Ellis, Tim Lenaghan, Nicola Landau
#46-#44 – Eddie Berganza, Jonathan Hickman, Ross Richie
#43-#41 – Jonah Weiland, Peter Philips, Mark Waid
#40-#38 – Chris Ryall, Dan Slott, Mark Paniccia
#37-#35 – Nick Lowe, Raini Telgemeier, Sana Amanat
#34-#32 – Mark Doyle, Lance Fensterman, Mark Millar
#31-#29 – Hajime Isayama, Kieron Gillen & Jamie McKelvie, Kevin Tsujihara
#28-#26 – John Cunningham, Dave Marshall, Amanda Conner & Jimmy Palmotti
#25-#23 – David Goyer, Loot Crate Merchandising Team, Frank Miller
#22-#20 – Ted Adams, David Steinberger, Kelly Sue DeConnick & Matt Fraction
#19-#17 – Brian Bendis, Brian K Vaughan, Bob Harras
#16-#14 – Kevin Feige, Jim Lee, Tom Brevoort
And catch up on previous years, here:
Bleeding Cool Magazine #19 is out now in all good comic book stores. Bleeding Cool Magazine #20 with the full Top 100 Power List will be out in January.