Chuck Gower

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About Chuck Gower

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    Gentlemen's Club Manager
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  1. But how does that compare to other years? It's been a few years since I sold on eBay, but I did for many years and every Spring, usually a few weeks after the SuperBowl, sales would pick up. I have no idea how much, it just seemed to get busier as the weather warmed up. So in the past, using the same situation, if sales every year were up 10% during that time frame of those three months, then THIS year, it'd actually be DOWN 2%, OR if in that time frame sales were up 5% during that time frame, then they'd be UP now, but only 3% over where they'd normally be up.
  2. Where I got it from is that when I was 10-11 years old, I tried drawing Spider-man, and, unaware that brushes were used I tried to draw the inking style with a pen. Drawing in the jagged lines. There was just something about Romita's inking style that always stayed with me... and I somewhat made the connection after reading Charles Burns 'Black Hole' some 20 years later... when I found out he was a huge fan of the Romance genre (that Romita worked in for 7 years at DC) while being interviewed about his X'ed Out trilogy of books, I figured it out. And then I asked him, when I saw him. I definitely can see the Feldstein comparison though... both creatively imaginative and quirky in their style...
  3. I got to meet him in Minnesota a few years ago and I asked him if he was influenced directly by John Romita Sr.'s ink brush work and he smiled and said I was one of the only people who'd ever asked him that, but yes, a huge influence on his style. He was cool as hell.
  4. Yeah, I love grocery ordering through Amazon now, it's actually really convenient. You know why I think a lot of people really hate digital? Because deep inside their subconscious they still have this idea that the comic they hold in their hands may someday be 'worth' something. And digital strips that whole concept away. Strips it right down to just: you like the story and art? And when it comes right down to it - when we have to judge today's Marvel and DC on just their stories and art... the verdict isn't kind.
  5. Marvel and DC are always going to chase market share. They're just not in the business of selling less comics. Some of it is going to sell less, it still takes up market space to make them #1. I know readers look at it from a practical standpoint of story, characterization, etc., etc., but Marvel doesn't. They see it as product. And the more product they can put out there, the more they feel they can sell. I'm not saying it's right. I'm not saying I agree with it. It just is, what it is.
  6. I didn't shoot it down, personally, I'd prefer it - I just don't see how, financially, they'd be able to do it or WANT to do it. Marvel's in the business of making money, and they're still making money. One of the things that has killed the Direct Market over the years is exactly what all retailers talk about - the unknown aspect of ordering product that you have no idea if you can sell. The 35 regular monthly titles, you know what people want from subscription. Those other 35 off shoots, unless someone adds it, they don't. So most retailers have to guess and thats where a lot of excess expense for stores comes from - and a lot of left over product. 99% of modern comics are virtually worthless 2 weeks after they come out. Ordering 2 months ahead of time (with a one month check up - Final Order Cut Off) of as much product that's out there is a hectic process. Marvel adds to that glut with the additional product.
  7. Right. Because generally stores make their money off of consistent monthly subscription customers. You KNOW that ASM or Batman is coming out every month and people sign up for it - it's generally guaranteed money. Trying to guesstimate who's going to buy any of those 35 off shoots is a nightmare that ends up usually with either added product or people missing a book they didn't order. Marvel and DC SHOULD make off shoot series RETURNABLE. That way stores could manage their regular subscriptions and not fear the unknown as much. And it would teach them to make quality extra product instead of just extra product.
  8. No, I agree, people get far too wrapped up in their nostalgia to clearly see sometimes - I don't necessarily try to hold back my nostalgia for it, but for me the artwork still does it. I can still look through these books and admire the art and the way they were put together...
  9. First... who says they aren't making money? The profit margin is a guesstimate, but it's consistent between the two examples... Iron Man #145 - 1980 - total PAID circulation - 188,930 - @50 cents each - $94,465 - @40% profit = $37,786 per issue Iron Man #1 - 2020 - total Diamond Sales - 54,624 - @$4.99 each - $272,573 - @40% profit = $109,029 per issue. If you take into account inflation (at a cumulative rate of about 214%), you're looking at having to hit about $118,621 in profit to meet that 1980 total today - which is just barely misses. And remember... for the 2020 book, we can't see Worldwide sales outside the United States or Digital Sales. Second... this idea that going to 15 titles and isolating the plots and marketing them to people who maybe haven't been following all along will bring in... what? The average 57 year old who used to read comics weekly? C'mon man, the people who still give a care about it all are still reading. The one's who don't, aren't. Marvel would have to find another Gerry Conway to write ASM and get someone who draws just like John Romita Sr. to draw it and even THEN, I might only be mildly curious. Other than that, at $4.99 a comic, I can find better uses for my time.
  10. A long way towards what? Selling less comics? Why would they want to do that? It's been 53 years since they've been as low as 16 monthly titles...
  11. I'm not sure how we got off on this path, but I'm going to try and tie it together. When people come into a comic book store for the first time, it's an overwhelming experience. How do you get them to try something? You have to give them a trade paperback. Marvel's start at what, $24.99? I can get a brand new novel for almost 10 bucks cheaper, or something in a softcover that's been out awhile for less than 10 bucks, and really old paperbacks for $5-$7. You can't pick up a new issue, because you'd be completely lost at what's going on. It's like an exclusive club that YOU have to study and work really hard to get caught up on in order to really enjoy it. There are some exceptions, sure - but overall, it's a completely overwhelming experience for a lot of people when they first come in. It used to be easy on the newsstand. Just pick up an issue. Enjoy the story. Most likely it had a page that got you caught up on things if it was in the middle of something. I miss that. Reading massive tome Omnibus' of continued storylines... eh, not so much. To me, it's about the art. The story's have always been kinda dumb, except on very rare occasion when something rises above the mediocrity almost by accident. I just want to be entertained for 20 minutes and get on with things.
  12. I'm not disagreeing with you - I'm sure my nostalgia does cloud it - I mean, the Bronze Age stories are NOT co-ordinated into neat little 6 issue, trade paperback friendly segments, plotted out and editorialized meticulously... BUT, back in 1975, I didn't care. I bought an issue and wanted it to entertain me at that moment and those books did it every month. Maybe it was my age - I was 10 in the Winter of 1973/1974, but the merging of art and story and the colorful characters, being handled by a bunch of hippies who grew up on classic Marvel, with very little editorial control - just seemed to entertain me then. To me, that was the EARLY Bronze Age, which (again for me) is different than the LATE Bronze Age. When I started reading in 1973/74, it was War of the World's in Amazing Adventures, Conway/Andru's ASM, Starlin on Captain Marvel, Steve Englehart's Avengers and Captain America, Buscema on Conan, Buckler on FF, Trimpe on Hulk, Englehart and Brunner's Doctor Strange, Romita's reprints in Marvel Tales, Marvel Team-Up for the cool of it, Morbius, Brother Voodoo, Shang-Chi, Luke Cage, Buckler's Deathlok, Black Panther, Iron Fist, and the Giant Size issues starting up... not to mention the Marvel Magazine's - Tales of the Zombie, Monster's Unleashed, Dracula Lives, Savage Sword of Conan, Deadly Hands of Kung Fu, Savage Tales... I never read more Marvel's than I did THEN and most likely never will again. In fact, I can still pick up a random issue of any of it, and read it and enjoy. I think that's maybe how comics were MEANT to be. To me, all of that stuff was VERY readable. I'm not saying anyone else's way is wrong - I just think the less serious I take some of these stories, the more I like it. I don't NEED at 14 part Carnage story line. But for the Bronze Age, by 1976/1977 things had changed - Starlin was gone, Barry Windsor-Smith was gone, Englehart and Brunner were gone, Trimpe wasn't on Hulk, Buckler was gone, Tales of the Zombie was gone, Len Wein was on ASM (ugh)...THAT's the Bronze Age I didn't much care for.
  13. I don't think anyone is saying that. Depends on how you enjoy reading comics.
  14. It's possible they agreed with the Governor's decision based upon wanting to keep their employees out of contact with each other.