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September 8, 2011


When A Publisher's Comic Book Sale Becomes Worth Mentioning

imageTop Shelf Comics has announced the latest iteration of its yearly (or almost-yearly) massive discounting sale, which will last until September 23 and this year includes savings extended to purchases made at this weekend's Small Press Expo.

I know that there's a line of thinking that someone's sale isn't worth mentioning except in kind of consumer-friendly, wave to the seller, community-of-comics way. I feel the difference between this kind of sale and sales you see from shops and on-line sellers is that the shape of the comics market is such that publishers like Top Shelf have long utilized selling books through the mail and at conventions as part of an aggressive direct-to-consumer sales system that a) mitigates the lack of saturation their titles have in comic shops, b) supplements and perhaps goes deeper into the line in terms of the books they're able to place into bookstores. In other words, sales like this one are a key component in the survival of a Top Shelf, businesses forced to conform to certain practices because of market idiosyncracies. It's hard for me to think of an equivalent in another medium. I've never been hand-sold by a Sonny Mehta or a Ray Muzyka.

Mostly, though, I just sort of like sales and this is a good one. I'm lucky enough to have just about everything from Top Shelf, and disorganized enough not to risk a second purchase. If I lost all of my books later this morning to some sort of angry-at-Chris-and-Brett sentient sinkhole, here's how I'd spend a quick $80 in the sale, working solely from the $3 and $1 listings.

* Banks/Eubanks $3.00
* Dear Julia, $3.00
* Dodgem Logic #1 $3.00
* Dodgem Logic #2 $3.00
* Dodgem Logic #3 $3.00
* Dodgem Logic #4 $3.00
* Dodgem Logic #5 $3.00
* Dodgem Logic #6 $3.00
* Dodgem Logic #7 $3.00
* Dodgem Logic #8 $3.00
* Fox Bunny Funny $3.00
* Happy #1 $1.00
* Happy #2: Elephant, Bunny, & Chicken $1.00
* Happy #3: Zirkus $1.00
* Happy #4: Female $1.00
* Hutch Owen (Vol 1): The Collected $3.00
* Hutch Owen (Vol 2): Unmarketable $3.00
* Jennifer Daydreamer #1 $1.00
* Jennifer Daydreamer #2 $1.00
* Micrographica $3.00
* Pistolwhip (Vol 1) $3.00
* Pistolwhip (Vol 2): Yellow Menace $3.00
* Regards From Serbia $3.00
* Sulk (Vol 1): Bighead and Friends $1.00
* Sulk (Vol 2): Deadly Awesome $1.00
* Sulk (Vol 3): The Kind of Strength... $1.00
* SuperF*ckers #1 $1.00
* SuperF*ckers #2 $1.00
* SuperF*ckers #3 $1.00
* SuperF*ckers #4 $1.00
* Super Spy (Vol 2): The Lost Dossiers $3.00
* Tales of Woodsman Pete $3.00
* The 120 Days of Simon $3.00
* The Man Who Loved Breasts $1.00
* The Playwright $3.00
* The Troll King $3.00

I can imagine putting together two or three similar lists pretty quickly and easily, and that's not getting into the many newer books that are less drastically discounted. In terms of comparing this kind of haul to weekly new comics buying, $80 will get you 23-25 mainstream comic book issues -- maybe a third of a single crossover event.

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posted 12:20 pm PST | Permalink
 

 
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