DC Comics Jim Lee: “We’re Still in the Business of Publishing Comics”

DC Comics Jim Lee: “We’re Still in the Business of Publishing Comics”

Reading that, are you looking forward to actually reading? How do the words of superstar artist and current Chief Creative Officer of DC Comics Jim Lee make you feel?

He told The Hollywood Reporter: We’re still in the business of publishing comics.

The top brands in publishing the fantasy and fictional are always Marvel and DC Comics. However, we should acknowledge and actively support Image, Dark Horse, IDW Publishing, and Valiant. The illustrated moments of brain to bulletin pages are for us to capture in a timeless form.

Comics. They are why geckaphiles gather in larger droves than ever before. Sure, the creation of extended universes and CBMs have provided Marvel and DC Comics gargantuan riches in the cinema. No one has really figured out how to match the magic of storytelling in print to picture than those two.

(Need I really remind you of Bloodshot?)

And now, one of the most celebrated illustrators since the deified Jack Kirby has exclaimed DC Comics is still going to be publishing the original form of nerddom.

This is why we all owe Jim Lee a big cosplay high five.

other Ones Bite the Dust

DC Comics had a huge round of layoffs but Jim Lee says they are still in the world of publishing comics
Source: DC Comics

Last week, WarnerMedia did what countless other businesses have been forced to do in the face of this global pandemic — deep and wide layoffs. No organization is beyond the effects of COVID-19. It’s just unfortunate WarnerMedia, parent company of DC Comics, was forced to chop heads days before its massive undertaking, DC FanDome.

DC Comics furloughed or released about 25% of its staff –many of them senior editors. Such a shame.

This week has been a really heavy difficult time not just for me, but for the entire organization. We’ve said goodbye to people that have been huge contributors and who have helped define and make DC what it is today.

DC Comics CCO Jim Lee via THR

That led to the rumor mill spinning off its axles across social media, most suggesting DC Comics is out of the comics business. To wit, Jim Lee put a hard stop to all that blather. Despite the layoffs, comics is, after all, half of DC’s name.

It is still the cornerstone of everything that we do. The need for storytelling, updating the mythology, is vital to what we do. The organization leans on us to share and establish the meaningful elements of the content that they need to use and incorporate for all their adaptations.

DC Comics CCO Jim Lee

Comics Inspire DC Entertainment

Source: DC Comics/YouTube

The virality of all comic book movies is definitely a good thing for the fans around the world who enjoy seeing those characters come to life on the big screen. Why do you think so many fans debate “comic canon”?

It all started with an idea, a plot, and a No. 2 pencil.

Comics — not movies, marketing, or merchandise — is the very reason we get to the movies in the first place. It was the comic strips that got our attention first. And even if you didn’t read the comic strips, watching the movie first usually inspires going to the half-price bookstore and buying a comic to see how true the movie was anyway.

So, getting a little reassurance about why DC Comics got in this business was nice to hear from Jim Lee:

[The comics line] is still the cornerstone of everything that we do. I don’t think they want to stop us from publishing comics. Comics serve a lot of different purposes and one of them is it’s a great way to incubate ideas and creating the next great franchises.

DC Comics CCO Jim Lee

The layoffs at DC Comics do represent about a 25% reduction in overhead as well as the comic book line. But good times, they are still a cornerstone at Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson‘s little business. None of this is to say Jim Lee is not focused on beefing up its main coin generator — multimedia.

Colossal fail DC Universe app is now defunct with the original shows on the way to HBO Max. (You know? The app that 75% of the country isn’t allowed to get because WarnerMedia is full of sage business people.)

The original content that is on DCU is migrating to HBO Max. Truthfully, that’s the best platform for that content. The amount of content you get, not just DC , but generally from WarnerMedia, is huge and it’s the best value proposition, if I’m allowed to use that marketing term. We feel that is the place for that.

DC COMICS CCO Jim Lee

Comics? Check. Original content with one hub? Check. Deeper commitment for fan service? Check. Oh, and you were all warned this would happen in May? Check. Check. You’re welcome.

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I write for a living, among other things in the digital journalism and analytics universe. So I'm a little like a nerd unicorn. But no bronies. Move along.
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