Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
 

Author Topic: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?  (Read 859 times)

SmallBlueThing(Reborn)

  • Member
  • Page Numbering Droid
  • **
  • Posts: 155
    • View Profile
Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« on: 30 May, 2019, 06:36:24 pm »
Apologies if this has been addressed elsewhere by those in the know. Seeing as how the "Eagle Comics" Dredd reprint title was so seminal in bringing Dredd to a US audience back in the 80s, it seems odd to me that we don't have a modern equivalent. Rebellion don't seem inexperienced or catastrophic in putting out US format titles (most reprint, some not) and IDW have a license of some sort, with an inferior Dredd strip that seems to continually miss the mark, despite a host of seriously good creators and all the best will in the world. 

So why isn't the 2000AD/ Meg strip itself reprinted on a monthly basis for the American market? Has the strip finally succumbed to 42 years of continuity and become "too reliant on backstory" for there to be an easy start point?

Is it just financially not worth the outlay?

Personally I'd love to see it, reformatted for the US dimensions, printed on cheap paper to undercut the cost of regular comics, and starting from "some point a couple of years ago".

Anyone have any idea why it's not happened?

SBT

Frank

  • Member
  • Bionic Fingers
  • *****
  • Posts: 8071
  • Pretend I typed IMHO
    • View Profile
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #1 on: 30 May, 2019, 07:01:34 pm »
Rebellion don't seem inexperienced or catastrophic in putting out US format titles (most reprint, some not) and IDW have a license of some sort, with an inferior Dredd strip that seems to continually miss the mark

I don't disagree, but Tharg's US one-shots generally sold significantly fewer copies than IDW's Dredd titles*, regardless of quality (link).


* Brass Sun issue 1 sold as many copies as IDW's Rogue Trooper book, which had already been cancelled.

The Adventurer

  • Member
  • Battle Hardened War Robot
  • ****
  • Posts: 4094
    • View Profile
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #2 on: 30 May, 2019, 07:43:38 pm »
Monthly reprints don't sell. If they did IDW's Judge Dredd Classics would still be going.

EDIT: Oh way, was Judge Dredd Classics ever a thing? Or was that just a FCBD One-Shot?

But the point is, monthly reprints just do not do well in 2019 across the board.

EDIT2: Oh okay, there was a Classics series back in 2013/14
https://comicvine.gamespot.com/judge-dredd-classics/4050-65074/
« Last Edit: 30 May, 2019, 07:47:46 pm by The Adventurer »

Notable Comics dropping the Week of 01-02-13


Frank

  • Member
  • Bionic Fingers
  • *****
  • Posts: 8071
  • Pretend I typed IMHO
    • View Profile
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #3 on: 30 May, 2019, 08:20:09 pm »
Monthly reprints don't sell. If they did IDW's Judge Dredd Classics would still be going.

I think what SBT had in mind was more a repackaging of the current (or at least recent) strip. The Small House, Machine Law, Sons Of Booth and Mike Carroll's Dredd: Mission To Moscow stories would fill a year of US comics.

I'm still not sure it would sell much, though. Rebellion's Movie-Dredd cash-ins sold 4, , and 1.7 thousand, respectively. The same month as the highest of those sales, IDW's Megacity Two debuted to 6.7 thousand.



Colin YNWA

  • Member
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 13794
    • View Profile
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #4 on: 30 May, 2019, 08:54:04 pm »
I'm sure there' lots of thinking goes into this and possilby while IDW had the license there was no need to add to a market where Dredd has always been a hard sell? If folks in the US want 2000ad stuff that's current digital offers no barriers for those that do.

The trades of modern Dredd are also readily available it seems and the US specific Case File still seem to be going strong so maybe that's the prefer market these days. Its certainly seems the case that availability of Dredd in the US is far better now than its ever been?

sheridan

  • Member
  • Battle Hardened War Robot
  • ****
  • Posts: 4184
    • View Profile
    • Wilde Wood
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #5 on: 30 May, 2019, 09:00:31 pm »
I'd have thought the main contest would be the Case Files, though I don't know how available those are in the US.  Then again, at the same time that Eagle Dredd was being published, so were Titan Dredd (then again, I bought the monthly but wouldn't have been available to get the Titan editions at the time).

Colin YNWA

  • Member
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 13794
    • View Profile
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #6 on: 30 May, 2019, 09:06:36 pm »
The Case Files thing is weird in the US. They have their only series of them, which from a quick check is up to volume 16. The regular series are however readily available via Amazon anyway at pretty much regular prices from what I can see. I'd guess - and this is a guess - that the US only ones are for the phyiscal massive market books shop for those that don't shop online? Either way they don't seem hard to get hold of for those that want them and the fact that the US run is still going suggests they're finding some kinda sustainable market?

SmallBlueThing(Reborn)

  • Member
  • Page Numbering Droid
  • **
  • Posts: 155
    • View Profile
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #7 on: 31 May, 2019, 09:09:30 am »
Yes, it was the more recent Dredd I was talking about really. IDW did their classics run, but that was yet again the early stuff that anyone familiar with the strip would already have read multiple times.
Dredd is a popular strip with a strong reputation, but how many casual punters across the States must surely be under the impression it either stopped years ago or that the newer stuff is just inferior? Trade paperback editions of most US monthly titles already exist with no perceived effect on the floppies that they contain.
I get all the arguments against, but it just seems very strange that Rebellion's flagship character doesn't have a regular place in the monthly schedules of such a huge market, and that they are content instead to have the property represented by the IDW version. Although to be fair, I've not bought or read that one for a good few years now, so it may have improved greatly.
SBT

Jim_Campbell

  • 2000AD Creator
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 12687
  • Letterer to the Stars! (and PJ)
    • View Profile
    • deviantArt Gallery
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #8 on: 31 May, 2019, 09:59:12 am »
Whatever the actual reason, it seems fairly obvious that the US as a market is fairly resistant to Dredd on some fundamental level. Classic material, new US-originated material, collections wrapped in covers by top-rank American artists with names like Millar, Morrison and Ennis, all of whom have significant brand recognition in the States, writ large on the cover… nothing seems to have cracked the US.

I find myself wondering if a big push with Strontium Dog material might not find more traction. The sci-fi Western feel would, perhaps, feel more familiar than Dredd's wide variety of tone and off-kilter satire, Alpha is a more traditional 'good guy' and the underlying theme (racism is bad) easier to grasp and embrace than Dredd's (fascism is bad, but this guy's a fascist, and you quite like this guy, what does that say about you?) … none of which is to suggest that Strontium Dog is a simplistic series, just that it's easier to grasp at a surface level.
Stupidly Busy Letterer: Samples. | Blog
Less-Awesome-Artist: Scribbles.

JOE SOAP

  • Member
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 14922
    • View Profile
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #9 on: 31 May, 2019, 10:18:45 am »
How well do any non-American comic characters sell in the US?


IndigoPrime

  • Administrator
  • Bionic Fingers
  • *****
  • Posts: 8196
    • View Profile
    • http://www.craiggrannell.com
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #10 on: 31 May, 2019, 10:33:16 am »
How well do any non-American comic characters sell in the US?
How well does anything that isn’t superheroes sell? In the current charts, you’re down to issue one of Conan (#10 position) before you hit a non-traditional superhero. Next, Conan again – at #92. Star Wars Vader Dark Visions is #100. Walking Dead? Best showing is #111. Buffy #1 is 189. The entire 200 is basically bereft of anything that isn’t a superhero or a massive piece of IP.

As for Dredd, reading the movie reviews at the time suggest one problem for mainstream adoption: a big chunk of Americans consider it an insult. This is a really shitty take on where their country ends up, and a lot of them really do not respond well to that. There is no hero to bring back America. It’s just recognition that America has become a fascist state (or, rather, what’s left of it has become two fascists states and a few settlements). It’s notable that the reviewers who took this line slammed the movie’s violence and grim humour, yet celebrated Deadpool – a character happily killing people left and right, just because he’s a messed-up maverick (versus a cop doing his job).

If Dredd hasn’t broken through in the mainstream newsstand yet, it’s never going to. As for other 2000 AD strips, it’s hard to know whether anything would sell very well as an ongoing title. Strontium Dog is great, but it’s pretty finite, and the early strips would baffle modern readers if it started from year one. Nikolai Dante didn’t stick in trades (perhaps because he’s Russian). What does that leave? Sláine? (“Knock-off Conan.”) Rogue Trooper? (Already failed.)

Still, from what I can tell, 2000 AD does appear to be holding its own as a niche brand, and getting traction in US cons, in digital, and in US trades. There’s clearly a market of sorts – as others in this thread have said; but it does feel like floppies are a hiding to nothing in the current market.

JOE SOAP

  • Member
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 14922
    • View Profile
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #11 on: 31 May, 2019, 10:46:36 am »
The entire 200 is basically bereft of anything that isn’t a superhero or a massive piece of IP.

Or anything that’s not American. 100 Bullets portrayed America as a doomed criminal empire filled with mostly unsavoury amoral characters but still sold well in its day. Even if Dredd was sold as a more heroic character battling a corrupt system to restore democracy and rights for the neglected, I don’t think it would fare any better.

IndigoPrime

  • Administrator
  • Bionic Fingers
  • *****
  • Posts: 8196
    • View Profile
    • http://www.craiggrannell.com
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #12 on: 31 May, 2019, 11:03:24 am »
That, too – and this is the case for a lot of US media. It’s taken as read that other countries (at least, Western ones) will embrace stories set in the US, and media created in the US. Much of our cultural intake is TV, movies, and music from American sources. But the reverse is much less the case. Sure, there are, for example, breakthrough British bands in the US, but even taking into account the relative population sizes, far fewer have historically made that leap. That’s even more evident regarding television. Our networks are saturated with US fare. The reverse just isn’t true. And it’s especially sad when you see great indie fare like Attack the Block and Shaun of the Dead being ignored in the US because of “difficult accents” or, more often, just because the films are set somewhere other than the USA.

(Marvel is a big like this. My wife happily watches things like the MCU, but she has asked what on earth is going on elsewhere in the planet. It’s a good point. Mind you, outside of New York is often a stretch for Marvel.)

sheridan

  • Member
  • Battle Hardened War Robot
  • ****
  • Posts: 4184
    • View Profile
    • Wilde Wood
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #13 on: 31 May, 2019, 11:16:02 am »
If Dredd hasn’t broken through in the mainstream newsstand yet, it’s never going to. As for other 2000 AD strips, it’s hard to know whether anything would sell very well as an ongoing title. Strontium Dog is great, but it’s pretty finite, and the early strips would baffle modern readers if it started from year one. Nikolai Dante didn’t stick in trades (perhaps because he’s Russian). What does that leave? Sláine? (“Knock-off Conan.”) Rogue Trooper? (Already failed.)


Has Rogue Trooper failed?  Wasn't that original series from IDW cancelled before the first issue had even been published?  That isn't a comment on the comic itself.  Pretty sure it was also before the Rogue Trooper computer game was re-released.  That's leaving aside publicity from Jones' film.


Jim_Campbell

  • 2000AD Creator
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 12687
  • Letterer to the Stars! (and PJ)
    • View Profile
    • deviantArt Gallery
Re: Query: Why isn't there a monthly Dredd reprint title?
« Reply #14 on: 31 May, 2019, 11:20:42 am »
How well does anything that isn’t superheroes sell? In the current charts, you’re down to issue one of Conan (#10 position) before you hit a non-traditional superhero. Next, Conan again – at #92. Star Wars Vader Dark Visions is #100. Walking Dead? Best showing is #111. Buffy #1 is 189. The entire 200 is basically bereft of anything that isn’t a superhero or a massive piece of IP.

Slightly random tangent: I think we may be misjudging the US market by focussing on the sales charts for monthly titles which are entirely dominated by superhero offerings from the Big Two.

I do the vast majority of my work for BOOM, who publish a lot of books every month — not a superhero title among them (I mean, you could make an argument for Power Rangers or even the WWE stuff as being thinly-disguised superhero books, but nothing that explicitly says "I am a superhero book") but lots of YA, science fiction… all very inclusive and representative, and it depresses the shit out of me to see how few copies most of it sells on the monthly charts.

All of this stuff lives in the TPB market, though. I'm pretty sure the monthly books help them get press coverage, and spread the cost of commissioning over multiple issues with at least some revenue coming back month-on-month, but that's not where these comics do business.

Giant Days is universally well-reviewed, has five (I think) Eisner nominations for either the title or John Allison's writing, and the monthly routinely sells less than 2,000 copies. And yet, I'm currently lettering #52. It's ending on #55 only because John wants to wrap it up — there's no way this book has run for four and a half years on sales of 2K a month, so I'm pretty sure it's doing all its business in channels that have never even seen a copy of Previews.
Stupidly Busy Letterer: Samples. | Blog
Less-Awesome-Artist: Scribbles.