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Sometimes It Takes A Bad Idea For The Future To Be Bright…

If you missed the news, the new comic book company Bad Idea released the first press release identifying how they intend to release their comics. I’ll put a link to the Graphic Policy article here that’ll give you more detail if you haven’t read it, but effectively what we’re looking at is a company who intend to ignore the current distribution method in comics, so Diamond, and instead self-distribute to twenty hand-picked stores (with intention to increase that to fifty by the end of the year). There will be no digital comics, there will be no trade paperbacks. There will also be no variant covers, with each comic being limited to one per customer.

This news has been met with anger, disappointment, optimism, excitement and every other reaction you’re thinking right now that’s going to come from comic fans shocked that they probably won’t be able to get the comics at their regular stop with some stating that it’s a bad idea to go this route. I’ll admit to being disappointed by the news in the press release until I read this interview on Multiveristy Comics with Dinesh Shamdasani, Warren Simons and Hunter Gorinson. The three are all former Valiant employees who were forced out or left after the investment firm DMG purchased the company. After the quality of the Valiant books under their watch, I was intrigued and excited by what they may have up their sleeves with Bad Idea

The above interview with the three reminded me of one of the most exciting things in comics – the hunt for a certain issue. It isn’t a coincidence that I have been slowly building various runs of comics without using online retailers; because hunting in bins has an appeal for me that I can’t quantify.

Dinesh hinted during the interview that the comics will be available online, though perhaps not officially, and he danced around the sad truth that people pirate comics and unfortunately that is a reality these days. It shouldn’t be, but that’s a rant for another day.

By selecting just twenty shops (to start) to sell their comics, Bad Idea is encouraging those of us (yes us, because I know damn well I’ll be one of them) to find ways to get the issues. The list of shops won’t be a secret, which implies the shops must be willing to ship the comics to those outside of reasonable driving distance, which will, in turn, drive the business of certain shops. If Bad Idea becomes a phenomenon then this could, in turn, drive people into comic shops that otherwise wouldn’t step into our world.

I understand the anger and disappointment people are feeling, though. I understand that you want to be able to order these books as you would your normal pull list. But being free of Diamond’s rigid distribution system means the creative teams are free to tell a story in 27 pages or 33. It means they can be late if the book isn’t ready without rushing out a subpar issue that won’t satisfy the fans. It means more money in the pockets of the people putting out the books.

By circumventing the traditional methods of distribution Bad Idea has gotten themselves a lot of people talking about a company who has barely revealed a full page of comics. They’re a company with some of the very best writers and artists who have been given the freedom to create what I’m sure will be some of the best comics we’ll ever read. You may or may not agree – but I have faith in Dinesh Shamdasani, Warren Simons, Hunter Gorinson and the amazing talent that they have accrued around them. I will find a way to get these books because I have faith in the people putting them out, and I want to support them – and at the very least the fact I have to work to get them is strangely exciting for me.

If you just want to read the books, you’ll find a way. But if you want to be a part of what could be the next step in comics… it may just take a Bad Idea for the future to be bright in comics.


Also posted on Ramblings Of A Comics Fan

A Bad Idea is Coming to Comics

Bad Idea teaser

It’s been teased for a while but it has been officially announced that Valiant Entertainment veterans Dinesh Shamdasani, Warren Simons, and Hunter Gorinson are returning to comics in 2020. The three have kicked off a new publishing company, Bad Idea.

The announcement today included the above teaser image featuring artwork from several of Bad Idea’s projects.

Announced creators featured in the teaser and working with the publisher include Doug Braithwaite, Tomas Giorello, Lewis LaRosa, and Adam Pollina.

More details are coming soon.

Hivemind and Brian Taylor are Bringing The Illuminatus! Trilogy to Television

Illuminatus!

Hivemind has announced that it has partnered with writer/director Brian Taylor and European production company Kallisti for a new television series based on The Illuminatus! Trilogy – the hugely influential science-fiction franchise created by authors Robert Anton Wilson and Robert Shea that first introduced the concept of “the Illuminati” into the popular consciousness, while simultaneously fueling, deconstructing, and skewering America’s modern-day obsession with conspiracy theories.

When the offices of a Manhattan news publisher are bombed, anti-authority reporter George Dorn begins to suspect that the disturbing conspiracy his editor has spent months investigating is not only real, it might be the key to unlocking all of history’s greatest unanswered mysteries. As George sets out to find his mentor and uncover the truth about an all-seeing secret society that seems to unify every insane, inane, and outlandish conspiracy theory ever told – from the JFK assassination, celebrity cabals and lost continents to UFOs, ancient gods and the truth about the New World Order – he finds himself drawn deeper into a war between two shadowy groups. On one side stand the Discordians, a clandestine band of chaos-loving guerrilla fighters led by the enigmatic modern-day pirate Hagbard Celine; and on the other, the Illuminati – elite authoritarians who secretly manipulate world events, ever-expanding their wealth, influence, and physical power in a plot to escape the limitations of human existence.

Illuminatus! will be executive produced by Dinesh Shamdasani and Hunter Gorinson for Hivemind, and Iris McPherson and Kirstin Winkler for Kallisti. Taylor will serve as executive producer and showrunner.

A globetrotting science-fiction/conspiracy thriller laced with subversive humor, Illuminatus! was first published in 1975 at the height of post-Watergate paranoia and has remained in print ever since.  Often ranked as one of the most influential and obsessively followed pieces of cult science fiction ever produced, references and allusions to the series have turned up everywhere many citing the series as an inspiration and influence.

Celebrated as a “mind-twisting science fiction…classic for more than 30 years” by the New York Times, “the ultimate conspiracy book” by the Village Voice, and the “New Testament” of the American counterculture underground by ViceIlluminatus! has spawned nearly a dozen sequels and spin-offs, along with comic books, stage plays, radio productions, role-playing games, and more based on the original trilogy. In recent years, Kallisti has also developed an immersive Illuminatus! VR experience, exploring series’ many iconic characters and settings, that has exhibited at numerous arts and technology events in the United States and Europe.

This Week Sees an Exodus of Comic Publisher Staff

This week has seen a large exodus of high profile staff at various comic publishers.

IDW Publishing‘s Chris Ryall is the highest profile of the bunch. Ryall joined the publisher in June 2004 and decided to leave under his own volition. In a message to staff and the public, he said he was taking a break from the “never-ending-deadline train” and will be seeking new challenges.

Also leaving the company is current public relations manager Steven Scott. Scott said he was leaving the publisher to focus on his comic creation and writing career.

That’s not the only shake-up with the publisher. Co-founder Ted Adams moved from publisher to CEO and Greg Goldstein moved to the publisher position.

Also leaving a comic publisher is Hunter Gorinson, Valiant Entertainment‘s VP of Marketing and Communications. This is the fourth high-profile individual to leave the company after its acquisition by DMG Entertainment in January. Also leaving the company was CCO and CEO Dinesh Shamdasani, Chairmon Peter Cuneo, and CFO Gavin Cuneo.

All of this comes after Axel Alonso was removed from his Editor-in-Chief position at Marvel back in November.

2018 is only three months in and the landscape is shifting a lot. With major announcements such as DC’s DC Zoom and DC Ink and Marvel’s “Fresh Start,” it’s clear 2018 is going to be an interesting year for the industry.

Valiant Promotes Hunter Gorinson to VP Marketing & Communications

VALIANT_GORINSON_001Valiant Entertainment has named Hunter Gorinson to the position of Vice President of Marketing & Communications. A member of the management team that relaunched Valiant’s publishing operations to record-setting critical and commercial success, Gorinson joined the company as Marketing & Communications Manager in 2011 and was subsequently promoted to his previous position as Director of Marketing, Communications & Digital Media in 2013. Gorinson’s new appointment reflects his integral strategic and managerial position within Valiant, where he has a played a key role across all facets of the company’s marketing and public relations in publishing, licensing, digital media, and film since its widely acclaimed return in 2012.

Gorinson’s new appointment reflects his integral strategic and managerial position within Valiant, where he has a played a key role across all facets of the company’s marketing and public relations in publishing, licensing, digital media, and film since its widely acclaimed return in 2012.

Gorinson’s experience prior to Valiant includes Marvel Entertainment and Showtime Networks, as well as several years as a reporter and columnist covering entertainment and local politics in Washington, DC. He holds a B.A. from New York University and an M.S. from The New School.