The Internet broke when the news that the man behind the success of the Marvel movie franchise, Kevin Feige, was being given the keys to the rest of the Marvel kingdom this week.
Actually, the Internet didn’t break, as I imagine none of you were too concerned about this revelation, however, the news does mean some massive changes in the Marvel comic book line, and I imagine there are more than a few players in the comic industry wondering where this will lead.
First of all Chief Creative Officer Joe Quesada has been moved sideways through the company, and despite what Marvel says, all signs point to a decline in sales and profit for the comic arm of the industry giant, and Feige must look like the man to return them to an era of massive sales and profitability.
All you need to do is check the performance of some of Marvel’s top tier comics to see that the company must be hugely disappointed with the sales figures on classic characters such as Spider-Man and Captain America. Imagine the boardroom conversations, with films such as Endgame breaking box office records, and yet the comics selling a fraction of what they used to before the movie franchise existed. It almost makes no sense.
Quesada will still be around in a creative capacity, but Feige, who is also in control of the TV shows, will be working closely with the team behind the comics. The obvious conclusion to make is that Feige will be trying to bring the same velocity to the comics as he has with the movies. Perhaps we will see a closer relationship between all the properties, which means fans that enjoy the Avengers films will be able to buy the Avengers comics and recognize the characters that they love. Confusion of the properties not synchronizing could be a factor in the downturn of comic sales, with fans not recognizing the comic book counterparts on the printed page.
Whatever happens, it seems a safe bet to say that such a change has been made for reasons that only Marvel fully understand, and the result of the change may not be obvious to the general comic book reader for a long time to come, however, personally I feel that with the decline in print continuing, the underperformance of the comics and a fanbase that often has a divided opinion, change was always going to be inevitable. Whether that’s for the better or worse will remain to be seen.
To be continued, true believers.
Louie Fecou reviews films, tv shows and comics for Ready Steady Cut, HC Movie Reviews and We Have A Hulk. He currently runs his own business in between watching films.