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Projections — 2/25/2015

February is almost done.  The bad weather out east caused the Wednesday comic shipment to be delayed last week. And again this week we have a delay with the shipment. Managed to get the box of statues and Heroclixs on Tuesday this week but not the comics. At least today (Wednesday 25th) they showed up during the noon hour again. Aaron is hoping they return to Tuesday shipments. Makes it easier for all of us.  New comic Wednesdays are the most important day of the week for the store so when the shipment gets delayed that is bad news. The customers that come here every Wednesday for their comics are the best customers we have. Never want to have a reason for them to get out of their Wednesday visit habit.
Last Wednesday with the cold weather and no new comics was painful.  Action figures did see some sales increase at least with people coming in for new comics and still buying something.
This week at least the comics did show up earlier than last week. Last week half the shipment showed up last on Thursday the 19th and the other half shows up Friday the 20th. Thursday we managed to get all the trade paper backs that were ordered. Friday the new comics finally showed up. Ouch. Aaron took care of the shipment during the lunch hour this week and last week. I ended up closing late Friday. Well Saturday morning actually. Needed to get some things done. Returned again Saturday to enjoyed the day  repairing a damaged  back issue bin. Someone tried to move it while it was still full of comics. I learned long ago not to move filing cabinets, desks, entertainment centers, or back issues bins before taking everything out of them. Take basically five long comic boxes of comics for weight for the top part of it and even more on the bottom part and then see what happens.  At least now there is only six more screws that are noticeable. The cracked wood underneath is not noticeable. This is why we can’t have nice things. And why we are not doing anymore free gaming.  Using up time making repairs instead of selling things is not a good use of time. Having a mess and drilling and vacuuming while customers are coming in is not ideal.
If you hear wood creaking and cracking because someone tried to move the back issue bin speak up. Don’t leave and hope no one notices. Because after the damage that was done to the back issue bin it could have hurt someone. The gaps kept growing because of the forced separation. One side could have collapsed and hit someone. That is what really disappoints me. The item that was dropped between the back issue bins was retrieved by getting something long and thin to push it back out. No trying to force the bins to move was even needed.
And of course while trying to get the repairs done as fast as possible it gets busy. I swear the best way  to increase business is when I actually want some dead time to get something else done. It’s Murphy’s law. It’s not going to happen. Even had someone call that I still don’t know if it was a joke gone bad or what while trying to get repairs done. Someone called to chew me out  about ordering an item for them but not getting it? It made no sense. The person claimed to have talked to me earlier that day but that was the first person I had talked on the phone with. Aaron says the person asked for me. Some random numbers seemed to be rattled off when I asked what was ordered. Item 19326? I was then told I was  going to get in trouble with my superior? I only own the store so what the? At that point I even asked if this was a friend of mine playing a joke on me. I was asked what my job title was.  I gave the phone back to Aaron figuring the person mistakenly had thought they talked to me and it was really him.  Then the person said they talked to our other store. The person thought they were talking to Best Buy. Um, ok Rodman Comics, Best Buy. Same thing on Bizarro world. Phone numbers aren’t even close. And when we answer the phone Rodman Comics that might be a clue?
Long Saturday. On my way home going 40 miles an hour I was startled. I look over while I am driving and there is a deer running right beside the car. Shocked the heck out of me. I could have rolled down the window and petted the deer it was so close. I thought for a second maybe I had fallen asleep at the wheel it was so surreal. It only lasted a few seconds as I let up on the gas in case there were more that I did not see. I didn’t want to hit anything. Was the deer part cheetah?
Monday set a record for sales. The wrong kind of record.
Was hoping this week is much better. The comic shipment was delayed by a day instead of days so that is a start. Ironic in the previous Projections I bring up about how much easier life is for me by receiving the comic shipments on Tuesday and that same week it gets delayed along with the following week.
The new Trinity Heroclix set is here! Will you be able to pull the Ultra Chase White Rabbit? I pulled the chase, Greed out of all the Chases.
Next week the new Star Wars miniatures material is out. The bounty hunters get their own ships.
March is almost here. Lots going down in March. New D&D book. New Pre release for Magic. A New Magic set. Along with  if Wizkids doesn’t have the typical delays of their new sets a Justice League Dice Masters set. And of course each week new comics.  And   I will be gone for a few days at the Gamma Trade show in Las Vegas. Which will be the first one I have ever went to. Will it be like the Diamond Summit? Will I learn even more? Will I win money while I am down there? I did last time I went though that was for vacation. And sadly I do not think I have ever won back to back when going to Vegas. I do look forward to talking with the various companies that produce games. Such as Wizards of the Coast, Wizkids, and Fantasy Flight Games.
Aaron and Amy will be holding down the fort while I am away by filling in for the hours that I usually work. They will be the last line of defense for Rodman Comics. Will there be a Rodman Comics when I return?
Will I be able to return from Vegas? Will the Rodman Comics Facebook have a help us find this man caption along with my picture? Stating lost everything in Vegas including the plane ticket to return home? Will anyone even notice I am gone?
Will I make it back in time for the midnight prerelease on Saturday the 21st?  Will I come back at all?
Sign up sheets are here for the Prereleases. We will have one at noon Sunday the 22nd. The Sunday one will be for only people that signed up before hand.
May 2nd Free Comic Book Day! Diamond has reported that orders for free comic book day top 5.6 million copies. Beating out 2014′s 4.65 million. 2340 stores will participate this year. This year will set a record.
Apparently Diamond and others thought Free Comic Book Day numbers would be down this year due to the number of different titles being less than last year. Sigh, I have only been open over four years and do not understand this line of thinking. More titles equals more sales has been Marvel, DC, Image, and all the other comic publishers’ line of thinking for years.  Comic stores as a business have only so much for resources. So much money. And even though the average new person who comes through the door on Free Comic Day assumes we received the comics for free to give out that is not the case. I understand the average new person’s line of thinking when I explain that the free comic books are comics  that we bought to give away doesn’t make much sense. They are thinking really big businesses that make millions (Marvel, DC, Image, Diamond, ect.)  make small businesses buy comics to give away? I agree  it doesn’t make much sense. Just because more titles are published doesn’t mean comic stores are going to order more. My first year being opened I ordered all the titles for Free Comic Book Day. Learned the hard way not all of the titles were wanted. Even for free. Had left over stock. Of yes, free comics.
The most popular Free Comic Book Day titles will easily be the ones put out be Marvel and DC. Their characters are the most universally recognized by the average non comic fan and regular comic fans. Just adding more titles does not help. There was a historic Civil War (not Marvel’s Civil War) comic one year for Free Comic Book Day. I thought wow kids might like that and it is something different. Then I read it shows an amputation and is for mature readers. It became a book I did not want a kid to pick up so I did not order it. And as I type this there is no comic based on the historic Civil War. So it would have been a waste of time to get people interested in a Civil War comic with out follow up material.
Did Diamond think last years Zombie Tramp was going to be ordered as heavy as Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy giveaway or DC’s Future End with Batman Beyond on the cover?
Free Comic Book Day’s selection of titles is a lot like when we do our regular monthly ordering of comics. There are some that people will really want and some that people will care less about. Flooding Free Comic Book Day with comics isn’t going to make me order more. If a new person leaves a comic store with 50 free comics or a 100 how does that help? Let’s be realistic the person who stockpiled all the free comics they could isn’t going to read them all. They are hoping they become worth money. Or they even make a quick buck. The prelude issue for Blackest Night on Free Comic Day was going for roughly $10 the day of that years Free Comic Day because not everyone has a comic store nearby. Same thing with past years heroclixs on Free Comic Book Day before they simply reissued them for sale a few weeks later.
As I have stated before less is more. Something I wish the publishers would factor into their comics. Marvel give me one great X Men book instead of so many that they get canceled. Same with DC, give me one great Justice League book. The market is just flooded right now. Marvel’s one new comic a week average is killing me. Same with Image.  Order comics is like whack a mole. For every new issue I have to figure out how much another issue will drop in readers. Like myself when ordering comics the readership has only so much they are willing to spend. When Marvel’s newest issues of a title comes out often times something else is getting dropped from a reading list.
As I often state even though Free Comic Book Day is supposedly about getting new customers into comic stores I view it as a customer appreciation day. A day to give back to all the loyal comic customers that have made Rodman Comics possible. I have had people tell me for free comic book day they will go elsewhere to “save me money.” Please do not do that. The comics are ordered. They are not returnable. It isn’t fair to other stores.  Look at it as me saying thank you for your business. Because that is what it is.
When I give away comics that I over ordered at the movie theater that creates more new customers than Free Comic Book Day does. The movie theater has a lot of traffic coming through it and the comics are reaching truly new potential readers. And the movie theater gets happy customers that got something for free.
Plus I ordered more comics for this years Free Comic Book Day than ever before. So there should be tons. I even went for the Rodman Comics customized variant cover this year.  And plus the new Avengers movie is that weekend. It has to be a good weekend. Mark May 2nd on your calendar for Free Comic Book Day.
Come June Wizard World will arrive to Des Moines for their first show here in Iowa. We will be there. We will try to make our booth a booth worth visiting for you. As the only comic convention we will be attending this year I hope to make it a good one. This should easily be the biggest and most well attended comic convention we have had a booth at. Will Wizard world be back in 2016? Will we be back at Wizard World in 2016? If it goes well and is worth it of course we will be.
In July a new Spirit comic will be launched by Dynamite. It will be written by Matt Wagner.
So far 2015 comic wise seems to about the past. What has been done before. DC has Convergence. Which is about previous eras of DC characters. Crisis on Infinite Earths, Zero Hour, pre 52, ect. Marvel has Secret Wars. About battleworlds that feature previous eras of Marvel characters. Inferno, Days of Future Past, Future Imperfect, ect.
Some of these characters are from decades ago. Why so much mining material from the past? Because there hasn’t been much new material to mine in recent years from Marvel and DC.
Has the comic based movies and T.V. shows helped or hurt the comics industry? I would say hurt more than helped. The Fantastic Four comic is getting canceled due to  upper level Marvel politics over the Fantastic Four movie. Marvel has put a lot of time, money, and effort into trying to make the Inhumans their new X Men brand since Marvel has the movie rights locked up for themselves unlike the X Men whoes movie rights are controlled by Fox. The Inhumans have not reached a fraction of the X Men’s popularity. While the X Men brand is losing out.
Millions went and watched the Captain America, Thor, Iron Man, and Avengers movies but the crossover traffic from the movies to the comics is almost none existent.  All the titles have been re launched. Iron Man didn’t even have his own title before Superior Iron Man launched. Superior Iron Man sales are dropping faster than Quicksilver running by for a hot date.
Can Iron Man actually return to being an actual hero that people want to read about?
DC’s most popular writer Geoff Johns  is rumored by bleedingcool.com to only be allowed to write one title for DC now due to his other duties. Granted helping develope T.V. properties based on DC characters most likely makes DC more money than him writing comics for DC. Though currently there isn’t any writer more popular than Geoff Johns writing for DC. Scott Snyder arguably comes close with his work on Batman. But Scott is also writing Wytches for Image and he may leave Batman and DC after issue 50 of Batman along with artist Greg Capullo.
When Geoff Johns writes a comic it sells. A rumor ran on bleedincool.com states a higher up mandated he only write one title a month.  If true that’s really to bad for the comic industry.
Marvel and DC make more money on the movies and T.V. properties than their publishing business so that is their focus. Geoff Johns helps to get DC’s properties in other media such as T.V. shows.
Writers and artists that have new ideas keep them for themselves often in hopes of getting their own film or T.V. deal. Why create for Marvel or DC something they might make a movie or T.V. show out of when they can keep creative control for themselves?
Jim Starlin’s Dreadstar comic is currently being adapted for T.V.  It is from the 1980s. Never thought I would type that.
Is DC up to something? September the month when DC has taken the top spot in sales from Marvel the last few years is coming up and they seem very quite. Marvel has already teased their mini re launch for this September. Marvel really doesn’t like losing just one month a year to DC. Thus the reason last September the Death of Wolverine was suppose to be a weekly limited series each week in September. But Marvel managed to bungle it and have parts of the limited series get delayed till October. Marvel even kept the delay hush hush not letting us know till the last minute.
So far though rumors of another 3D cover month for September have not been heard. The 3D covers have to be ordered even earlier than regular titles. Marc Silvestri has been rumored to be working on a new Batman project. I thought it would have been announced along with the over twenty new DC titles coming out in June. I was wrong. Could Marc’s new Batman project be coming out in September? Artist Ed Benes has been doing covers for the current Warlord of Mars comic. Could Ed Benes be working on a new DC project? Bleedingcool.com reported another rumor that seems to be the opposite of their Geoff Johns can only write one DC title rumor. This time the rumor is Geoff Johns has a Aquaman themed limited series in the work. Mera or Rise of the Seven Seas. Along with a new Shazam comic with artist Gary Frank. With Shazam announced as an upcoming movie for 2019 DC will have a Shazam comic before that of course.  One by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank would be an easy sell.
Now could all this come out in September giving DC a much needed sales boost? Time will tell.
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Hope to see you at Rodman Comics! And hoping for better weather next week. I love you Iowa but why can you be so mean weather wise?






Projections — 8/13/2014

The Bob Layton countdown. Less than 53 days till October 4th. I have gathered the various back issues we have at the store that he has worked on along with buying issues so there will be material to sell that day if you want something signed. Saturday sold a copy of Iron Man 150 to a customer to have signed by Bob. The customer read it and liked it so much he is now trying to hunt down issue 149. Part of the Doctor Doom vs Iron Man story. You are also welcomed to bring comics to have him sign. Please be reasonable though. He will also be doing sketches.
Please join us in welcoming Bob Layton for his first trip to Iowa. I hope after his first trip to Iowa he will be willing to come back some day. Also feel free to check out his website at http://www.boblayton.com/. He does commissions. Darn good ones too. I have one hanging up at the store.
On CBR’s website here is a small part of their interview with Dan Didio and Jim Lee:
On the thinking behind DC’s weekly titles: “The goal for weekly comics is very simple,” said DiDio. “It’s to bring people into stores every week. To give them a destination book. I know that I love to go to the comic shop every week, but you’re not sure what might be out or what’s not out but you’re looking for an excuse. So the weekly comics sort of give people an excuse to go in there. You know you have that book, and while you’re there you can see what else is out there and grab it. Like I said, there’s so many books out there. Nobody comes into a comic shop, at least not that I know of, that goes in and buys just one comic. They go in and they see one and they find something else and they buy a bunch. So now what we like to do is it gives them a reason to come in, buy your weekly book, and then hopefully they find the other stuff that we’re putting out that week as well.”
I agree with that. When the monthly regular Batman title comes out I know it is going to be a strong sales week. People love Batman. Comic stores need people coming into their stores and buying something. People need a reason. They want to be entertained. Put a comic out that people will come in and pick up as soon as possible. Quick cash flow also helps businesses.
Walking Dead 130 had an unexpected twist. Don’t want to spoil it for you. If you are not already reading this title you should be.
Wizkids, which is owned by NECA who makes Heroclixs continues to do all the wrong moves. After already delaying the Con In Your Store materials to arrive on August 8th we didn’t receive anything that day. Of course there is no way to directly contact Wizkids about this. Alliance who carries Wizkids products contacted me that day asking if we had received it. I of course said no. So come Monday Alliance was suppose to call and let me know what is going on. That was Friday. Monday I ended up calling in the morning. Asked if there was anymore info on the Con material. Was asked “You didn’t get yours?” Um, no we talked about this Friday. Was told they would call back later. As of 2:30 Monday I called again and left a voicemail and have been told nothing. I did get a call back at 2:40 letting me know come Wednesday they should have an answer. I only spent over a grand to be in the Con In Your Store program. My payment wasn’t delayed at all. Meaning my money was taken as soon as possible. Then days before we were originally suppose to be able to have the Con In Your Store they delayed it so the earliest a store could have the event was August 8th. August 8th gets here and I still have nothing. People contacted me wanting to know what I have received. But I have not received anything. Thankfully I did not have the Con Event on that weekend. And now the 16th is a “Surprise and Delight” Heroclix event since I had pushed back the Con In Your Store Day to then. But I still have no idea if I will receive anything by then. It is Wednesday morning as I type this up. If there is any updates today I will post them on our Facebook page.
There is no tracking number even.
The Amazing Spiderman Team base, Trinity base, Captain America Sentinel, and Shuma I am now being told Alliance doesn’t even have these on hand to send out to any of the stores that signed up for the Con In Your Store program. And they do not know when they will receive them. Shuma and the Trinity base have already been released at conventions and Shuma was available online also. The Captain America Sentinel is a repaint. The Amazing Spiderman Team base is reusing the Brother Hood of Evil’s team base. And Wizkids does not have them available yet. But they were part of the Con In Your Store Program. And when they do come out I have to pay for them.
Friday when I talked with Alliance the sales rep said he noticed I scaled back on the Galactic Guardians Heroclix coming out. I said yeah. I already spent a grand on product Wizkids couldn’t sell to get the Con In Your Store material and I still don’t even have that. Dealing with Wizkids takes up to much of my time. And as a business owner time is money.
I was hoping to show what was received for the Con In Your Store program to everyone who showed to play War of Light round III Saturday August 9th. It is very hard to hype random “surprise and delight” items that could be an old Chase like Sun Girl to a rare in demand Heroclix.
Come Wednesday I have to hope that my store wasn’t over looked and we are still receiving hopefully good heroclixs for the Con In Your Store. And that Wizkids doesn’t find out they don’t have enough to cover us if they overlooked us.
Business wise Wizkids causes more headaches than any other business that I deal with. Meaning out of all the vendors that get my money Wizkids beats them all for being a pain in the butt. From having a heroclix set where retailers had to order so much to receive prize support for the set and then on the day it releases no one received the prize support. Wizkids still stayed silent on it. Alliance who distributes their product even had on the invoice the prize support but listed as not shipped. Then we the retailers all found out that there never was any prize support. Wizkids kept silent about that little fact right up to the release date. And never did I get an apology or any word about this from Wizkids.
Will I get an apology or anything to make up for the Con In Your Store program headaches? Doubt it. Wizkids is set up that there is no direct contact with them. Everything goes through the only two vendors that carry their products, Diamond and Alliance. Wizkids is making money so they don’t care about the small businesses that sell their product.
I am tired of guessing how much War of Light material for their six month event I will receive. Their whole you better stock up because we don’t expect to have any for months 5 and 6 is another headache. I am not in the warehouse business Wizkids. Stock up your own material. Seriously having small businesses buy product that they can not sell for months is a drain on any business.
Who the heck goes out and buys a car they can not drive for 6 months?
As regular readers of this column know this isn’t the first column that I have pointed out Wizkids business practice. And quite frankly I am tired of typing about them. I know Wizkids is not going to apologize to me or anyone for this. I know they will do nothing to help right any of the problems they have caused.
So I finally slashed my heroclix orders by over half on the Galactic Guardians set due out this month. Along with future heroclix releases. I think it is a good business move regardless. The movie version of the Galactic Guardians just came out. And now the Marvel Comics Galactic Guardians are coming out. War of Light round three was this month. The Con In Your Store program is suppose to happen soon. To many heroclix events at once.
And if the new set of Galactic Guardians is popular I will just order more after selling out of my original order. I do not see a sell out of the product like what happened with the Deadpool set. Though from what I understand the popular zombie chase heroclixs will be back for this set. The team bases for the zombies are in the prize support.
Wizkids looking like they do not know what they are doing just makes me look like I don’t know what I am doing when it comes to dealing with their products. Wizkids uses up to much of my time. Time that can be better used promoting comic sales and other products whose companies seem to want to worth with me even more.
Magic From The Vault: Annihilation is due out this month. Next month will be another prerelease for Magic for the newest set.
The State Fair is going on. That always brings in out of town people to the store. It always amazes me how people who come from areas with no comic stores really like the store.
Heck for War of Light Heroclixs we had one person drive two hours to play since he had so much fun last time he was here.
Great Saturday with the Magic Game day, War of Light Heroclixs, and all the out of town customers. Other than wondering what was going on with the Wizkids Con In the Store program…..
Been more people asking about Star Wars X Wing Miniatures gaming. I hear you all. Just need things to slow down first. Right now it is looking like maybe in the middle of October for the return of Saturday gaming for X Wing.
The whole does gaming have a positive effect on sales question? When I went to Vegas for the Summitt and talked with follow store owners the ones that seem to be doing the best were the ones that didn’t have games going on in their stores. There were ones who told me their business improved once they stopped having games.
Getting a group of people together gaming can at times lead to peope getting hurt feelings and not coming back due to another fellow player. Or a rude person arriving that no one wants to deal with. Or people with no morals. Prizesharks that want the prize so badly they may tell others they hate the store but they have to have the prize. During the War of Light I had to tell a person to play his own game and quit bothering other peoples games. I even told him he already cost me two heroclix players. He didn’t even seem surprised.
Heck, two gamers in the past wanted to be on my emailer list. Just a few problems. I hadn’t done a customer emailer for  months and was putting the news letter on the website and I had never told them one ever existed. They wanted to see if I would be foolish enough to email a copy without blind carbon copying my other customers on the list. They wanted to give a copy of my customers email address to help out another gamer at a different location.
Andy helped get the Magic gaming in better shape. He pointed out having free Magic events was a drain on the store. I had another person claim it was “unfair” to people if I didn’t let people play for free. How many businesses encourage people to hang out for free?
When heroclix gaming first started and I started getting official heroclix prizes out for free that was a big mistake. People would show up for the free events. I remember one person being so impressed that I had over twenty heroclix players and I ended up telling him yeah but I would have made more money working at Burger King. I remember trying to talk one of them into just having Heroclixs at his house since I didn’t make any sense for me to host heroclixs for them. Drafts and events where people had to buy something were the complete opposite of free nights . I would hear oh I don’t have any money. But after the free heroclixs and prizes were awarded they would go out for pizza and beer. Which we all know doesn’t cost anything. Steve pointed out what Andy was telling me about Magic. You need to make money.
Being nice and help full and letting people hang out for free just told some people if he is dumb enough to let us hang out for free let’s do it.
Free events were done away with. And money wise gaming was doing a lot better.
I understand the idea of having gaming is to get people into a store. It is one advantage that stores with a physical location have over internet businesses.
It is like the store I told about after I went to Kansas City awhile back. A group of Magic players loved playing at their local store. Then they decided to get all their boxes of at the time new Magic material online. And they didn’t tell the owner that they didn’t plan on buying any from him. That owner had to liquidate what he thought they were going to buy by selling it at a lost to another store who sells gaming material but doesn’t hold any games. Who told me this story. That store did go out of business later on. Now the people that played there stop in the store that doesn’t run gaming events and just sells the product  and talk about how they miss the old store that they used to play at.
For whatever reason some gamers think of gaming at a store as an entitlement. Not all. Just some. It is like some have been taught that.
I understand it has to worth it for a person to come here. The flip side is it also has to be worth it for the business to host gaming.
Just like Star Wars X Wing Miniatures. Had a record sales day selling them after not having any Star Wars X Wing Miniature gaming for months. It is part of the reason I am hesitant to have it come back. It was doing fine till I bought prize support for it and had to listen to whining about the prize support not being good enough. Even though the Star Wars X Wing Miniature gaming was still free. It went from playing and getting nothing to still playing and getting something and still not paying anything. But the thank you for buying prize support was whining. Then a person who whined about the prize support had enough balls to tell me to order different prize support. Hell no.
If I had never ordered prize support people would still have been playing for fun. It is like prize support teaches some players they are owed it.
When I go to a bar I don’t demand a free shot glass because they are lucky enough that I showed up. I should try that sometime and have someone record it and put the results on YouTube.
The new D&D is out. Sold more D&D material than I ever did when there was D&D gaming here.
I am sure if the Con In Your Store program wasn’t such a pain I would be in a better mood about gaming at the store.
There are a lot of gamers that do treat the store as a typical business and that is good. There are also very respectful gamers. And you should easily know who you are. Odds are I have sat down and even played with you. I enjoy the gaming. But as I have stated before the owners of the building I lease from don’t care how many gamers play, how many Facebook likes the store has, or how many positive online reviews the store has. They just care that the lease check clears.
I may just to easy going of a person. An easy mark for some people, or so they think. A more business attitude and/or look at the store I may need to develop. Time for me to work on becoming the Comic Book Guy from the Simpsons.
And then we had a birthday heroclix game celebration at the store Tuesday . And Matthew’s look afterwards is priceless. Makes it all worth wild. His picture is up on our Facebook page.
The website is growing. I have even had to do some updates to it already since some items sold already. Yes, I am surprised. I think I only had roughly 40 items on it last week. I really dropped the ball by not having the website check out working a lot sooner. The good news is I have added more items to the marketplace and hope to add more every week.
Still on Facebook. Get updates and news and funny stuff by “liking” us on Facebook.
Everything for Bob Layton’s arrival to Rodman Comics is good to go. The hotel is paid. The tickets are paid. Thunderbirds are go!
Hope to see you at Rodman Comics. Well unless you are a jerk. Unless you have money. Naw, just joking. No jerks please, and no banging your head on the display case please.

Projections — 8/6/2014

It has started. The countdown till Bob Layton arrives at Rodman Comics. Spread the word. Let your follow comic fan know he will be here October 4th for the 4th Anniversary of the store. Just a few more months.
So far responses has been very positive. People are shocked I managed to get a comic legend to do a signing here. He will also be doing sketches.
Again feel free to check out his website to learn more about Bob Layton. http://www.boblayton.com/
Also feel free to have him do a commission for yourself. His rates are on his website.
Had one of my employees start gathering comics here that Bob has done work on. We have older material to newer comics on hand of various work Bob has done. I did not know he had worked on Rom Spaceknight and a Marvel Star Wars cover before.
I am thinking about having a commission or two done by Mr Layton. One idea is Rom vs Iron Man. Or the Rodman mascot trying to escape Iron Man with a black book marked Tony Stark’s on it. Feel free to weigh in on which one you think would be cooler.
And yes there will be cake from the same place that made it last year for the anniversary. It was darn good cake.
August 9th at noon with be Gameday for Magic the Gathering. Who will win the game mat?
After reading about the former Green Power Ranger coming to Wizard World Des Moines next year my hopes for a high profile, huge, exciting comic con, coming to Des Moines took a hit. Reality is settling in. Seriously the former Green Power Ranger? So far the non comic pros announced are bigger than the comic pros that have been announced. I like Shatner and all. After all Kirk was the best dang Captain of any Enterprise. It just is my hope that when Wizard World has its first show in Des Moines at least there is one big comic pro announced. If I go to the Des Moines Wizard World and pay $80 to get Shatner’s autograph and that is the highlight of my time there I will be dissappointed. Truthfully I have already seen Shatner years ago in Des Moines. Yes, over a decade ago.
There is plenty of time till next July when Wizard World arrives though so there is still hope. And who knows maybe Rodman Comics will be there. It has been years since we have had a table at a comic con. It just needs to be worth the store’s time.
Marvel has announced their plans for new Star Wars comics. I am sure the last thing Marvel wants to hear is “When Dark Horse published Star Wars it was better.” So it should be interesting.
Heroclix War of Light month 3 is on like Donkey Kong Saturday August 9th. And of course August 16th is the new date for the Con In Your Store event. As of typing this I am told Alliance has still not received the material for the Con In Your Store event. I am not suprised. August 23rd is a draft for the new Marvel Comics based Guardians of the Galaxy set. If it doesn’t get delayed. Apparently Wizkids at this point is not sure if the new Guardians set will be delayed by only a few days or not. Though my Diamond Comics invoice shows they are arriving next week. Big month for Heroclix.
Finally the market place on our website is working and live. It was cursed with people making it worse than it was before they started working on it. Feel free to check it out to sample some of the products we carry. I will be trying to update it when time permits. Meaning it will slowly grow. If you need something shipped to you shipping is free.
Been working on the comic order for October. Wow, Marvel has really went over board with the variants. They are spoofing DC’s various 75th Anniversary covers with Deadpool 75th Anniversary variants for various titles of theirs. Even though Deadpool has not been around half that long. The covers might even be funny. Heck, if I know though since Marvel didn’t provide any images of those covers.
Here are some examples of what Marvel is doing.
For the new Deathlok series for every 50 copies I order I may get one Crain variant cover.
Exceed 150% of orders for Original Sins #1 with orders for Deathlok #1 reg cover, and the Scotty Young variant order all you want.
You may order 1 Hasbro variant for every 15 regular covers you purchase. What does the Hasbro cover look like? No idea since there is no image provided.
You may order 1 Design variant for every 25 regular you purchase. Again no image is provided. Is “Design” the name of an artist or Marvel just thought up “Design variant” and thought it sounded cool?
Exceed 150% of orders for Original Sins #1 with orders for Deathlok #1 regular cover, and order this blank variant all you want.
I will be totally honest and admit I do not see 50 copies of Deathlok selling. Let alone over 150 percent of what Original Sin 1 sold. Original Sin was Marvel’s summer event. Eyeballs were given away promoting it. Deathlok has a small role in the T.V. series Agents of Shield. It isn’t going to sell better than Original Sin 1. So ordering more would be foolish.
The Scotty Young variants are popular. Usually it is much easier to order them. But this time Marvel is making them too expensive to get. The Scotty Young variants I sell for cover price. If I suddenly charge more it would be off putting to people who didn’t know of the changes to order them. If I was in the customer’s shoes I would think the owner was suddenly over charging and would be turned off to shopping there.
Guardians 3000 will be launching in October. Here are the order breakdowns for that title’s variants.
You may order 1 Alex Ross variant for every 100 regular you purchase.
Exceed 150% of orders for Guardians of Galaxy #15 with orders for Guardians 3000 #1 reg cvr, and this Scotty Young variant to order all you want. No image of the cover included.
You may order 1 Sandoval variant for every 25 regular you purchase. Who the heck is Sandoval? Again no image provided.
You may order 1 Deadpool 75th variant for every 25 regular you purchase. Again no image provided.
25 copies is manageable. I am a big fan of Alex Ross but 100 copies just so I can order 1 variant of his? Guardians 3000 is just to much of a long shot. And again the more than double what your orders were of Guardians of the Galaxy 15 so you may order Scotty Young variants just makes me roll my eyes.
These are just two examples of what Marvel is doing for October. Here is part of what Marvel is doing for the new Thor.
Thor 1 has a one in 300 sketch cover due out in October.
Exceed 150% of orders for Original Sins 5 with orders for Thor #1 reg cvr, and this Scotty Young variant to order all you want. No image of the cover included.
Thor also has six more variant covers coming out for the first issue.
But hey if I order 300 copies of Thor I qualify for all the other variants. Groan.
Exceed 200% of orders for Original Sin #2 with orders for Avengers & X-Men Axis #1 reg cvr, and order this variant all you want. Must opt in to party.
I can safely say I will not be ordering any of the Deadpool Party variants tied into AXIS. Basically order over triple what I ordered for Original Sin 2? Heck, no. Original Sin isn’t even finished yet and it has really cooled off sales wise. Less than favorable liked Infinity and now Original Sin has really cooled down readers excitment for Marvel company wide crossovers. No one has said anything favorably about yet the next Marvel crossover AXIS. We really don’t know what it is about yet. Other than another “Everything changes!”, yet again.
Marvel you make all these comics non returnable. Provide no images of the majority of variants you have coming out in October. It’s like you hope the retailers are drunk while ordering and bankrupt themselves over ordering. Who cares as long as Marvel makes a buck? Is that the idea?
There is an Original Sin Annual coming out in October? Why?
DC has lots of Monster variants for the month which fits since they will release in October just in time for Halloween. The difference is the Monster variants I can order what ever amount I want and there are no hoops to jump through. It doesn’t mean DC has some different variants where so many have to be order to qualify for. They just are going that route far less. And that is why Marvel beats them sales wise.
Marvel worries me with their constant re launches and flooding of the market with variants. To me it feels like a flimsy way of holding sales. It is the 90s all over again is what I am saying.
Comic that came out last week that you should have read is Justice League 32. Sounds like some big problems for the world’s greatest superheroes.
This week sees the return of Superior Spiderman’s title. Issue 32 is on the stands.
We went and seen the Guardians of the Galaxy movie. I like it. Two thumbs up.
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