Most people who frequent here are familiar with the movement, but former D.C. Comics artist Mike S. Miller, who’s currently running the Lonestar IndieGoGo campaign, wrote a nice analysis about the movement for people who aren’t quite familiar with it:
As the comic book world braces for its annual mecca to San Diego Comic Con, there is a storm brewing beneath the feet of its biggest publishers: Comicsgate.
There has been a growing dissatisfaction with the direction main stream comic books have been going in the past few years. In a time of unprecedented media attention for comic books from the three biggest publishers in the industry, and a period of economic growth unseen in the last thirty years… the comic book industry lost over seventy million dollars last year.
But that money hasn’t all just disappeared. A burgeoning new movement that has been labeled ‘Comicsgate’, has managed to pick up enough of those lost readers to sell over one million dollars in the past three months, and the movement is growing every day.
What is ‘Comicsgate’?
Comicsgate is an alliance of comic book fans, critics, and creators who have found common cause in standing up against what they see as a hard push by social justice warriors into their hobby. A push that has corrupted or politicized the industry they have spent a lifetime cultivating. Fans have simply been walking away from the hobby in droves (as the industries falling profits attest). Critics entertain those disgruntled fans through social media and YouTube channels, giving shape to a movement that has been years, if not decades, in the making. Creators, some of whom have been the subject of blacklisting at companies run by said SJW’s, have found common cause with critics and fans alike, and thus was born an alliance: Comicsgate.
Who is ‘Comicsgate’?
Comicsgate is the people who share the same belief that those who run the major publishing companies in the comics industry are treating their fans poorly. In part due to their constant pushing of social justice or other political ideologies. In part due to some creators and editors outright insulting the fans who disagree with said ideologies.
Comicsgate is not about political ideology or identity. There are conservatives and liberals, there are black and white, gay and straight, Christian and Atheist, and everything under the sun. Where comicsgate people disagree is not where they put their focus. It’s where they agree that they ally: Comics are about entertainment, not political or ideological proselytizing. That is the line in the sand that has brought a disparate group of people together to change comics as a medium back to what it was when they fell in love with the genre.
The movement means business.
A few months ago one of the better known critics in the Comicsgate movement was told to ‘put up or shut up’ about his critique of comic books. Richard C. Meyer, aka ‘Diversity and Comics’ on Youtube and Twitter, took the challenge to heart. Hiring Marvel artist Jon Malin and colorist Brett Smith to create his own comic book, ‘Jawbreakers’ and sell it through Indiegogo. And did it sell. To date, the book has sold over $364,000 and climbing. No small feat for an independent comic. And just the start of a wave of comics in the Comicsgate alliance.
Next came Ethan Van Sciver’s ‘Cyberfrog: Blood Honey’, a re-birth of the Green Lantern artist’s 25 year old creator owned title, which has broken all records in the crowd-funding of comic books at a whopping $443,000 and growing every day.
Mitch Breitweiser’s ‘Red Rooster: The Golden Age’ launched just a few weeks ago, and has already broken the $90,000 mark.
Chuck Dixon’s ‘Space Force’ launched out of the gate last week and has reached $30,000 already.
And latest to the game, launching just this weekend and already breaking the $25,000 barrier, is Injustice artist Mike S. Miller’s ‘Lonestar: Heart of the Hero’.
These, along with a handful of other titles have cumulatively brought the fledgling movement of Comicsgate projects to a height no one could have imagined three short months ago when Jawbreakers first hit the crowd-funding platform. And with the audience of the critics and the creators alike growing day after day, this seems to be a movement with real feet.
Watch out Marvel, DC, and Image comics. The customers you’ve been taking for granted have found a new venue for spending their hard earned money. With a little luck, and a bit of business sense, the Comicsgate alliance could well shape the future of the comic book industry itself.
The movement is thriving so much, a million dollars is nothing to scoff at, especially where the industry is at overall right now. It’s only going to keep moving as well. I’m coming out with my crowdfund for my comic Flying Sparks next week, but in the meantime, if you want to check out my writing, I’ve got a new novella out, currently at #3 in Steampunk overall and the #1 New Release. Check it out if you want to see my writing style. I promise you’ll have fun. It’s steampunk knights with guns, after all.
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