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Manley and Kurtz interview Scott Rosenberg of Platinum Studios

In the latest podcast, Scott Rosenberg of Platinum Studios, Scott Kurtz of PvP, and Joey Manley (that's me) talk for almost an hour and a half about Hollywood and webcomics.

There is just a teensy bit of yelling. But mostly it's civil, and very (I think) informative.

My own audio track gets out of sync as the show progresses, so that I sound like I'm overtalking the two Scotts, and laughing in all the wrong places, and so on. It's very embarrassing. I'm going to try to figure out why that happened and fix it before recording another podcast. Meanwhile, this is one of the most important TAC shows we've done yet, so I'm posting it anyway, even with the horrible audio problems.

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It's not so bad now

The William G's picture

Now that've read the transcript, I figure that if you have an idea that you're not particularly attached to, it might be worth flinging it at Platinum for a few bucks.

Nice work, Joey (and Scott,

Brian Moore's picture

Nice work, Joey (and Scott, too.) Â And the transcription is much appreciated.

Smithson by Shaenon K. Garrity, Brian Moore, Roger Langridge, and Robert Stevenson

The transcription is done.

Joey Manley's picture

The transcription is done. Whew. Haven't typed that hard since my old days as a temporary secretary (back in the mid-nineties, when you guys were big-time comics publishers).

Part One:

Part Two:

Part Three:

Part Three is the most interesting part, I think.

I'm transcribing it so that

Joey Manley's picture

I'm transcribing it so that the content will be available in non-confusing form. Stay tuned.

This was a very insightful

Fabricari's picture

This was a very insightful podcast. The discussion spanned pretty wide ranging from relevant comic book history to the nature of publishing deals with Image, Dark Horse, and others.

I certainly don't think this contest is for me, as I couldn't imagine giving away the property, but I appreciate Scott Rosenburg's candid answers to any question. I can dig that Platinum Studios has no qualms against you shopping your comic around before approaching them as a last resort.

Joey brings up a good point about how the carrot of having someone publish your idea is less of an appeal with quality print-on-demand these days. Self publishing isn't the credit card killer it used to be in the 90's.

It was good to hear Joey and Kurtz together on this podcast. I hope the confusion and occassional snarkyness that came up from the technical difficulties don't create any cascading conflict that detracts from all the greatness in this conversation.

Steve "Fabricari" Harrison

Steve "Fabricari" Harrison

Good discussion, guys.I'm

Chris Crosby's picture

Good discussion, guys.

I'm not sure if Mr. Kurtz was kidding about this or not, but either way, I'll make a minor correction to a comment about my publishing past spoken near the end of the podcast... SLOTH PARK, my parody of South Park published through the Blatant Comics label, did not sell anywhere near 30,000 copies (sadly :>). More like 5,000 copies. It probably WOULD'VE sold 30K if it were really published during the boom time of the early '90s, but it was published in June 1998, when direct market comic book sales were actually about the same or slightly worse than they are right now.

For comparison's sake, here's the Top 300 for the month when SOUTH PARK #1 was released (it ranked #232):

And here's the Top 300 comics for the most recent month counted, May 2006 (where the #232-ranked comic sold 5,261 copies):

I didn't start publishing comic books actively until around 1996, which was years after the speculation-based boom time of 1990-93 and well into the dark times of the bust. I also would've loved to have been publishing comics when Mr. Rosenberg was going strong and virtually everything was selling 100,000+ copies (I remember EX-MUTANTS fondly!)... but alas, I was not.

Come back again, Comic Book Boom! We miss you!

Anyways, no harm done, just clearing up the comic book timeline for the sake of those impressionable webcartooning youngsters who were barely alive in the '90s...

Now how much of an idiot was

Fabricari's picture

Now how much of an idiot was I to publish Fabricari in '98, right in the heart of the comic book depression. Back then I got a nice pat on the head for selling 300 copies of each issue thru Diamond. So pathetic, eh?

Having gone through that I have such warm fuzzy feelings for web distribution and print-on-demand now.Â

Steve "Fabricari" Harrison

Steve "Fabricari" Harrison

I hear ya! I published my

Chris Crosby's picture

I hear ya! I published my fair share of triple-digit sellers back then, too.

This got me all nostalgic,

Chris Crosby's picture

This got me all nostalgic, so I looked up some data on parody comics actually published during boom time. A good example to illustrate Mr. Kurtz's point is ADOLECENT RADIOACTIVE BLACK-BELT HAMSTERS, a parody of TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES published in 1986 (during the "Black and White boom," when retailers were buying up tons of copies of indy books in hopes of finding the next TMNT). The first issue of HAMSTERS sold a whopping 77,000 copies (source).

The creator of HAMSTERS, Don Chin, later formed Parody Press, which in the early '90s (during the speculator boom spurred the launch of Image and the death of Superman) cleaned up by publishing dozens of parody books with titles DEATH OF STUPIDMAN and OLDBLOOD. (Search for "Parody Press" on's Small Publisher Search for a fun time.)