See what I did? I gave you enough material for a couple of months! And yes, I planned it that way.
I've also started a small discussion here in your column. Yes, I planned that, too. If my mustache was a bit longer, I'd be twirling it.
I'm a collector, too. I have to put that out there, for anyone who wants to know or doubt it. I said it before, but I'm just saying it again for clarity's sake. So, I'm a collector.
I don't think that comics will go the way of the dodo in print form, but I DO think they're going to go away with the distribution model and price point if things don't change. People ask me about comics all the time (I'm the local comics guru), and I tell them honestly that I cannot in good conscience tell them to start collecting comics, or give comics to their kids. They're just too damned expensive. I mean, I have, easily, a sixty dollar a week habit, and that's mostly Marvel with a few DC sprinkled in there. Sixty dollars. When a kid can only take five bucks and come out with one comic because they don't have enough for two, there's a problem.
So, things are going to change, and everyone is going to resist it. There's a comipacalypse coming, and no one's really going to be prepared for it.
Comic shops are going to close, comics are going to up the page count from the arbitrary 22 pages to a more serious 44 pages of story, and there are going to be multiple stories in there. It's going to look more like a tpb, but for new comics.
And Marvel is going to lead the way. Everyone follows Marvel's tune.
Because shops now cannot move as many different units in order to stay in business, they're going to close. This moves comics into bookstores. With the expanded, "collected" books, the payment schemes have to change, as well. Creators will truly get paid against royalties, and royalties will be within reach. Back issue sales will be on ebay and at conventions, and their prices will go up for a while.
There will also be a helluva lot more digital content. Marvel will be the leader here, as well. They will allow for downloadable content, and collectors will go out and buy storage media to contain it. There will be a digital reader that will be an industry standard. This new content will be akin to cartoons in that there will be some "movement" and full cast recordings. Think Invincible over at MTV.com. And yes, we're going to pay for that privilege.
Some doom and gloom, but these will be the changes to come. Remember how long it took technology to catch up to our imaginations in order to get a live-action Spider-Man on the big screen in a believable manner? The same thing is going to happen to comics.
We have to innovate now, in order to catch the wave as a small swell before the tsunami crashes over us all.