Sunday, February 17, 2008

Can't a Virgin get some love?

I’m sometimes amazed about 2 things regarding the Virgin line. A) How are they still around selling maybe 3K per issue? B) Why are they only selling 3K an issue with all of that name brand talent and quality production value?

We’re talking about Garth Ennis, Mike Carey, Guy Ritchie, Jenna Jameson. This is a unique and strange phenomenon, and I just can’t fathom why more people aren’t trying it out just as a circus attraction. And the books seem to come out on time, too.

What’s most promising about the whole thing is that many of these properties and players are inclined toward the film industry. Nothing says “pop!” like a movie property. I’d like to say that what we’re seeing here is equivalent to pre-unity Valiant, but really it isn’t. This isn’t even CrossGen. Valiant ended up toe-to-toe with the big boys, at least for awhile. CrossGen never made it up to the Big 2 level, but they were in the zip code. You knew somebody who was reading a CrossGen book. But there just appears to be no audience for the Virgin brand at all.

I’ll still tentatively put a Market Spotlight stamp of approval on any and all Virgin material. At the top of the list I’ll put Stranded, Game Keeper, Ennis’s 7 Brothers. Down from that stratum I’ll place Voodoo Child, Dock Walloper, Dan Dare. You want to know about rare? How about those India Authentic TPBs. Are there even 1,000 people ordering those books? I can’t see it.

Virgin is also producing limited edition HCs for some of its more high-profile books. (high profile here means somebody in your state is actually collecting the book) Those are destined for super-stardom if Virgin ever sees a renaissance. And a couple of hit films would definitely produce one.

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