Wednesday, December 3, 2008

And Another One Bites the Dust!

The cancellation of COMIC FOUNDRY as a print magazine was announced yesterday and I seem to be the only person who isn't surprised.

I'm a comic slut. I'll read pretty much anything related to comics be they books or magazines. As such, I've seen a lot of good comic magazines come and go through the years. (I still miss AMAZING HEROES.) But as a comic magazine, COMIC FOUNDRY didn't make much of an impact on me.

Wanna know why?

Cuz I could never find a copy. And I looked, believe me, I looked.

I live in Rhode Island. The smallest freaking state in the country. Still, we're pretty fortunate in that we have a few comic stores around here. Not to mention that I am little over an hour away from stores in Connecticut and Massachusetts. So what I'm about to describe wasn't an isolated incident.

My favorite LCBS carried the first issue but never ordered another. I was told that there was no interest and that, other than me, no one bought a copy of the first issue. I then traveled around to the other stores as I am wont to do. None of them had any copies either.

Surely, I thought, my ultimate LCBS in Massachusets, the one that orders practically EVERYTHING comic book related including local small press comics, would have one. Sadly, I was mistaken. So sure was I that an issue MUST be hiding from me that I even asked the assistant manager about it only to be met with a blank stare. "Is that a magazine about comics?", he asked. I replied that it not only was but that four issues had been published. He was stunned. He had never heard of the magazine. What makes this story worse is that this assistant manager was in charge of ordering magazines and related items for the store.

Yeah, I could have gone online but I'm an old fart. I like to actually GO to a store when I buy something. I like to look around and scout out new things. Most important, I like to have what I bought IN MY HANDS when I buy it! No waiting for someone to fill the order and get around to plopping it in the mail where Cthulhu knows what Deep One is waiting to shred the thing into confetti. And I hear your other question, "Why didn't you subscribe to it at your LCBS?"

To be honest, I wasn't THAT interested in it. The first issue was nice but nothing that overwhelmed me. It seemed to me to be a weird, hermaphroditic spawn of MAXIM and WIZARD, intent upon making upscale geeks feel cool. All well and good but not going to light my 46 yr old, overweight heart on fire. Perhaps if I were a young, 20-something I might have enjoyed it more and gotten more out of the articles. As it was the issue made me feel old and, although still geeky, not anywhere near cool.

Even stranger is publisher/founder Tim Leong's announcement of the cancellation coming because "my career no longer allows enough time to do the magazine". He doesn't say it's canceled because of low sales or ad revenue. He just doesn't have the time to do it the way he thinks it deserves which is an honorable admission. But this is the guy who campaigned SO HARD when Diamond first rejected COMIC FOUNDRY as a magazine. Tim Leong convinced Diamond to accept it amidst much media hoopla and a lot of work on his part. And now, after 5 issues, he's stepping away from it. I'm sure I'm not the only person shaking their head at this turn-around.

But I feel bad anytime a comic related magazine ceases publication. And if I could have found those other issues on the stand, I would have bought them. Because I'm a comic slut and that's what I do.

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