Comics Creators

Comics - Everyone Else (NOT Marvel / DC)


That’s rational criticism though. We have never banned or deleted any posts here from people that didn’t like a Millar book. Nobody, including himself, thinks all his work is great. Mark has laughed at himself for his Robo-Hunter run which was very badly received.

Personal attacks are another thing and accusations of stealing ideas and even actual money from disabled children are out there.


With the Red Son stuff and the Authority stuff, it is important to also remember that Grant has also accused the Wachowskis of ripping him off for the Matrix and claimed a lot of credit for the success of Nolan’s Batman. He has a track record of making these weird claims.


Out of curiosity, what is Morrison’s bestselling, most commercially successful work? It can be corporate or creator-owned.


Arkham Asylum, he said openly it made so much money he stopped working and travelled the world for 6 months.


I think for a while Arkham was the biggest selling graphic novel ever. It came out shortly after the Burton Batman film which helped.


Ya, it came out around the time of Burton’s Batman and was well advertised with anything connected to that film especially the adaptations.


All Star Superman is probably up there too.


It is mostly a triumph of Dave McKean. The artwork is sensational.

I don’t want to crap on Morrison at all either, I have loved loads of his work and he’s really talented. To an extent he really shouldn’t get involved in criticising other creators but he does, a lot, especially Millar and Moore.

Morrison’s description of Wanted as a warning of the nadir fanboy culture is approaching is a rare mention of Millar, hinting at the falling out between the two creators. Significantly he instead stresses how much professional assistance his fellow Glaswegian received from him. This is perhaps a more subtle form of attack, belittling whatever success Millar has since achieved after their coquettish all-night-long phone sessions.
Instead Morrison reserves his invective for Alan Moore, specifically his comic Watchmen, which is described as a “Pop Art extinction-level event, a dinosaur killer and wrecker of worlds.” Through Morrison’s eyes his comics work has taken place on a battle-field, between the cancerous legacy of Moore’s ‘bleak moral universe’ and the hopeful superhero narrative, as stewarded by DC and Marvel.


I know Mark thinks the world of Grant from the brief times we’ve talked about him. He’s undoubtedly a tremendous talent and comic icon, I’ve loved almost everything he’s written. He seems very rock and roll, in that he’s talented but occasionally destructive in an unnecessary way. It’s a real shame and I hope he’s revered long term for his works and not necessarily his conduct.


I was a fan of Mark’s work first. Interacting with him and seeing what a great guy he is has only made me appreciate him more. I am truly happy to see him be successful.


Yes to be clear I like a lot Grant’s work and think it’s a real shame that they couldn’t have remained friends who occasionally shared ideas about business and storytelling. It would have been great for readers and obviously great for Scotland’s comics scene.


I can’t help but think about Morrison, 10 years older than Millar and facing his 60’s and wish he’d had Millar’s success. Morrisonworld could have been an amazing imprint. Imagine 20 series akin to We3. Instead I don’t think his books are as commercial as they could have been. Comic fans use commercial like a curse word but it’s literally necessary for these creators to get paid. And those who use it as a curse word are the same asswipes wearing Batman t shirts and going to every comic book movie. So Grant has done more off the wall stuff, that might be adapted a little but isn’t lending itself to mainstream success.

Really there’s a bunch of creators who must be kicking themselves somewhat. Bendis, Ennis, Ellis, Moore, Miller, Morrison, Waid, David, Fraction, BKV and Hickman must be sitting back and wondering why they didn’t do something like this. Future indie creators will follow this model I have no doubt. It just needed a bit of business sense and some coaching. And that’s where I’m critical of Image for not providing that. Then again, the Image guys themselves had this exact same opportunity 20 years ago and they squandered it. Their creations forgotten rather than staples of modern pop culture.


I think it’s not really in their remit. As far as I last saw Image employ only 16 people. It’s a non profit organisation with no inherent motivation to expand. The lean setup means they can charge very little and make profits in low selling books. Its strength is its weakness, if they went more corporate and aggressive then the creator freedom and profit split would suffer. I’ve worked in book publishing, there is no better deal than Image, they are better than even Stephen King and Jo Rowling get.

It is down to the creators and the likes of Fraction and DeConnick have set up a company to sell on TV rights. Millar has done even better, Brubaker only now has one book on the go as he’s writing screenplays and got a series signed off.

I did think Morrison missed the boat because his material is harder to sell but there is a Happy! trailer out there.


Different folks, different times, different situations. Mark did not ride the Liefeld wave, the variant cover van, or any of the other rather profitable waves that have hit comics. Actually, he got hit rather wickedly a couple times by having great concepts that were work-for-hire. He used these. Physical stuff, no fairy tale ending, and actually having to engage in fisticuffs with yon rogue vulpes. Hangovers, political arguments, some moron on the net who thinks hats are anachronistic, weather, more politics, church, relationships - our boy simply took care of business.

Good wee Scottish lad!


I don’t know Mark personally but I’ve been to a lot of conventions and he would easily make the top 3 of nicest creators I’ve chatted to. A real top guy which I think is echoed by everyone on the board.

I wish this Netflix deal all the best and hope he keeps putting out books as that can only be good for the industry.

However, that doesn’t stop me thinking he is massively overrated as a writer. I’m happy to criticise the work but that doesn’t extend to the man himself. I don’t buy any of his books but weirdly I still borrow the occasional one from a friend (due to the artists he works with I guess).


Readers: Please take note of Bobby’s board title. :smile:


I think they should change their remit, or someone else should step in and offer a better service. Image are essentially the only way for most creators to publish their own books. The creators take all the financial risk, Image simply act as a print and ordering facilitator. They do some marketing, have their own digital platform that no-one uses but mostly let each creator do their own thing. They give occasional advice but not much.

Which means that every talented creator is ultimately a lone wolf operation competing against billion dollar entertainment giants with tens of thousands of employees and decades of relationships and experience. It’s insane. Creators can’t be expected to be good business people. They can’t be expected to negotiate merchandise contracts, movie rights, even distribution deals. Mark has said that Lucy was fundamental to his making this deal happen, and lots of creators have to rely on their family to help out with that side, family who don’t understand the industry themselves. With a little professional support the indie creators would be in a far superior place.

With the way comics dominate the entertainment industry these days it’s baffling to consider that most properties originate from a Mom and Pop source. I shudder to think of the bad deals and missed opportunities for creators over the years. An entire generation of creative minds should be where Millar finds himself today, and they’re not because they didn’t have the help they should have had. It’s terrible, and it wouldn’t happen in other industries.

I’m hoping this change would be part of the next boom cycle I think is coming in 2020.


It’s a trade off. Better service, lower percentage. Image offer the best terms in the history of any publishing because they were set up that way, a bare minimum outfit to make the expenses minimal and creator profits maximal. You add in marketing and sales experts and it eats into that.

Neil Gaiman said his status as a bestselling novelist gave him a 10% royalty when he was negotiating with DC for Sandman’s 20th anniversary and they offered him 5%, post costs the Image deal is 100%. (DC eventually caved in to the 10% a couple of years later). Nobody gets a better profit share than Image offer, not Stephen King or JK Rowling or Dan Brown.

I would imagine the best option would be to make it an optional add on but to be honest with some of the appalling PR Marvel are putting out now with their massive staff I don’t know if many would be better off.


An adaption of Happy! is coming to one of the cable channels in the near future.


I may be aware of that fact by saying I saw the trailer. :smile: