Gladstone Articles from Comics Buyer's Guide
marvinw at zahav.net.il
Wed Jun 8 23:05:16 CEST 2005
When all is said and done, including comments that the price of the Disney comics is high relative to other media, Gemstone should be given credit for providing us with a service. I doubt very much that Gemstone is making any profit at the present level of circulation.
Gladstone (Bruce Hamilton) was surely a lover of the Disney characters and the Disney comic tradition, but under the prevailing conditions with the comic book stores, he couldn't make a go of it. He dealt mainly in the narrow field of Disney comics. At the end of his run, both circulation and the price of the comics were similar to what they are now ( and the dollar was worth more then and I gather that production costs were lower).
Gemstone (Stephen Geppi) is located within their owners much wider sphere of pop culture and his willingness to give some balance that not just the super hero comics are of importance.
It is ironic that the super hero comics are now apparently subsidising the return of the Disney comics. It was the comics of Disney and others, all generally called the Funnies, that paved the way for the appearance of the gritty and often gruesome super hero "comics".
In the long haul, improvement in circulation is necessary for the survival of the Disney comics. The Disney Company is now making a great comeback for Mickey, Donald, Goofy, etc with their classic cartoon DVD series and recent Toon Studio DVDs along with other direct to video features.
It is the parents that buy these DVDs for the kids, the same people that usually avoid the comic book shops where the teens are present. I would suggest that a push for brief advertisements on these DVDs would get good results to inform parents of web sites for purchase of Disney comics and getting the the kids,and the kids in us, to read them.
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