Tuesday, October 29, 2013

DC Unapproves New York.

New York City is the cultural and historical capital of the American mainstream comics industry. The vast majority of golden age creators were New York kids or creators who came to New York from around the world. And DC has been at the center of that since 1934. But in recent years, their corporate parents have been consolidating operations on the West Coast, and as of 2015, DC will have left New York City.

I know a couple of DC staffers, and I know their lives are going to be effected by this. My best wishes to all the staffers who have got to make some hard decisions. In terms of how this will really effect mainstream comics, it's frankly negligible. Corporate comics are created by all kinds of folks in all kinds different places. Geographical proximity is no longer necessary to make safe factory-line WFH comics. And it's a smart business strategy from LA-based TimeWarnerBrosDCEntertainment. All that said,

Their loss. New York is by far one of the best cities in the world and far better than Los Angeles in every conceivable category (and I originally typed them all out; there are many). By leaving New York you loose the energy and life and hyperdense overlapping of cultures and genre and languages and lifestyles and media. By going to Los Angeles, you gain nothing.

No matter, it's too late for DC. Elements of their editorial structure are widely reported to have shown themselves to be creatively bankrupt and managerially incompetent. They make some pretty awful comics. NYC-based Marvel is not immune to this condition, but is far better by any measure.

Yes, when it comes to my preferred flavor of Superhero comics, I make mine Marvel. But DC keeps giving me reasons that validate that predilection. And if you want out of the greatest city in the world to go to that cultural dump, go ahead.

I am clearly biased towards New York, too. But this is a natural consequence of the city being as amazing as it is. Don't hate the player, hare the game.

I'm going to go write about Love and Rockets now. 

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