The comic book industry suffered another crushing blow this month when sales continued to slump compared to the same time last year. Though Image Comics continued to hold onto an increased market share, capturing more than 11%, comics sales were down 11.83% (though graphic novel sales, where Image dominates, were up 22.85%). The slump this month is being blamed on today's opening of "The Art of Leadership: A President’s Personal Diplomacy" at the George W. Bush Presidential Center in Dallas, TX. The event marks the first major public showing of art by the 43rd POTUS as well as strong new competition for fans of mainstream superhero comic books. For art-lovers seeking embarrassing, amateurish art created by out-of-touch white male manchildren, they can now choose between two equally attractive outlets: superhero comics, or George Bush's artwork.
"Fundamentally, there's barely any difference," explained Professor of Wacky Art Theories at the prestigious University of Phoenix, Thaddeus T. Puffinbottoms. "Except that the level of natural talent and understanding of basic anatomy is probably higher in George's work than in the work of someone like Humberto Ramos or Rob Liefeld." Puffinbottoms additionally praised Bush's lack of sexually exploitive cheesecake artwork featuring beloved female characters, and even a Hawkeye Initiative-like reversal of roles in the former president's nude self-portraits.
"They're an exact recreation of some panels from Catwoman #23," Puffinbottoms pointed out. "But with Bush instead of Selina. It's a brilliant commentary, and, dare I say, very alluring as well. Look how strong and empowered Bush looks in these. He's truly in control of his own sexual agency."
Other subjects in Bush's paintings include megalomaniacal Russian leader Vladimir Putin, former British prime minister Tony Blair, former South Korean president Lee Myung-bak, the Dalai Lama, Afghan president Hamid Karzai, retired Chinese leader Jiang Zemin, and crown prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed bin Zayed. The diversity of characters represented in Bush's paintings alone puts mainstream superhero comics to shame.
"That guy in the turban, I would give him an origin where he's falsely accused of being a terrorist due to a set of unfortunate coincidences where he accidentally steals a car with a bomb in it," commented ham-fisted and painfully un-self-aware DC Comics writer Geoff Johns, who used basically that same plotline to introduce Muslim Green Lantern Simon Baz. "Then we find out he's innocent all along. Boom! Not racist!"
Meanwhile, the sales of mainstream comics continue to decline, though Marvel did manage to swindle retailers into ordering 500,000 copies of this month's Amazing Spider-Man #1, which should not only boost sales on next month's charts, but also drive sales in the 25 cent bin comic market for decades to come. Here's the charts:
|PUBLISHER||COMICS SHIPPED||GRAPHIC NOVELS SHIPPED||MAGAZINES SHIPPED||TOTAL SHIPPED|
|DARK HORSE COMICS||42||15||0||57|
COMPARATIVE SALES STATISTICS
|MARCH 2014 VS. FEBRUARY 2014|
|MARCH 2014 VS. MARCH 2013|
|FIRST QUARTER 2014 VS. FOURTH QUARTER 2013|
|FIRST QUARTER 2014 VS. FIRST QUARTER 2013|
|YEAR-TO-DATE 2014 VS. YEAR-TO-DATE 2013|
TOP 10 COMIC BOOKS
|2||SUPERMAN UNCHAINED #6||$3.99||OCT130160-M||DC|
|3||FOREVER EVIL #6||$3.99||DEC130197-M||DC|
|4||SANDMAN OVERTURE #2 (MR)||$3.99||DEC130330-M||DC|
|5||SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #29||$3.99||JAN140720-M||MAR|
|7||SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #30||$3.99||JAN140722||MAR|
|8||SILVER SURFER #1||$3.99||JAN140650-M||MAR|
|9||THE WALKING DEAD #124 (MR)||$2.99||JAN140624||IMA|
|10||UNCANNY X-MEN #19.NOW||$3.99||JAN140665-M||MAR|
TOP 10 GRAPHIC NOVELS & TRADE PAPERBACKS
|1||THE WALKING DEAD VOL. 20: ALL OUT WAR PART 1 TP (MR)||$14.99||JAN140559||IMA|
|2||SAGA VOLUME 3 TP (MR)||$14.99||JAN140556||IMA|
|3||NEMO: ROSES OF BERLIN HC (MR)||$14.95||JAN141334||TOP|
|4||AVATAR: THE LAST AIRBENDER VOL. 7: RIFT PART 1 TP||$10.99||NOV130064||DAR|
|5||CHEW VOLUME 8: FAMILY RECIPES TP (MR)||$12.99||JAN140548||IMA|
|6||JUSTICE LEAGUE: TRINITY WAR HC (N52)||$29.99||NOV130226||DC|
|7||HARLEY QUINN: WELCOME TO METROPOLIS TP||$19.99||DEC130313||DC|
|8||ADVENTURE TIME VOL. 3: SEEING RED OGN||$11.99||JAN141027||BOO|
|9||MARVEL MASTERWORKS: AMAZING SPIDER-MAN VOL. 1 TP||$24.99||NOV082434||MAR|
|10||STRAY BULLETS UBER ALLES EDITION TP (MR)||$59.99||JAN140530||IMA|
TOP 10 BOOKS
|1||DOCTOR WHO: 11TH DOCTOR SONIC SCREWDRIVER KIT||$12.95||JAN141487||RUN|
|2||WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE'S THE EMPIRE STRIKETH BACK HC||$14.95||JAN141522||RAN|
|3||PAUL POPE'S MONSTERS & TITANS: BATTLING BOY ART ON TOUR SC||$24.99||JAN140554||IMA|
|4||LEGEND OF ZELDA: HYRULE HISTORIA HC||$34.99||SEP120055||DAR|
|5||THE SHADOW DOUBLE NOVEL VOLUME 82: SPY RING SC||$14.95||JAN141518||SAN|
|6||HATSUNE MIKU GRAPHICS VOCALOID VOLUME 1 SC||$34.99||AUG131474||UDO|
|7||DOC SAVAGE DOUBLE NOVEL VOLUME 73: LAND OF LONG JUJU SC||$14.95||JAN141517||SAN|
|8||BATMAN SCIENCE: THE REAL WORLD SCIENCE BEHIND BATMAN'S GEAR SC||$9.95||NOV131374||CAP|
|9||DRAGON'S DOGMA OFFICIAL DESIGN WORKS SC||$44.99||AUG131471||UDO|
|10||ADVENTURE TIME: TOTALLY MATH POSTER COLLECTION SC||$19.95||JAN141468||ABR|
TOP 10 TOYS
|1||THE WALKING DEAD TV SERIES 5 ACTION FIGURES||JUL138243||TMP|
|2||BATMAN HUSH: BATMAN & CATWOMAN KISS STATUE||SEP130322||DC|
|3||ARROW: OLIVER QUEEN/DEATHSTROKE ACTION FIGURE 2-PACK||NOV130293||DC|
|4||DC COMICS COVER GIRLS HUNTRESS STATUE||OCT130308||DC|
|5||BATMAN ARKHAM CITY: TWO-FACE ACTION FIGURE||NOV130290||DC|
|6||BATMAN BLACK & WHITE STATUE BY GARY FRANK||OCT130310||DC|
|7||WONDER WOMAN ART OF WAR STATUE BY JIM LEE||SEP130317||DC|
|8||SUPERMAN: MAN OF STEEL STATUE BY ROCAFORT||OCT130309||DC|
|9||DC COMICS SUPER VILLAINS: OWLMAN ACTION FIGURE||OCT130307||DC|
|10||DC COMICS SUPERGIRL "NEW 52" ARTFX+ STATUE||SEP132026||KOT|
TOP 10 GAMES
|1||MONOPOLY: THE WALKING DEAD SURVIVAL EDITION||OCT128266||USA|
|2||MARVEL HEROCLIX: CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER||DEC132341||NEC|
|3||DC HEROCLIX: LEGION OF SUPERHEROES BOOSTER BRICK||OCT132418||NEC|
|5||MARVEL HEROCLIX: CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER STARTER SET||DEC132343||NEC|
|6||DC HEROCLIX: LEGION OF DOOM FAST FORCES 6-PACK||OCT132416||NEC|
|7||MAGIC THE GATHERING TCG: BORN OF THE GODS BOOSTER PACK||DEC132337||WZK|
|8||RISK: THE WALKING DEAD SURVIVAL EDITION||OCT128267||USA|
|9||MAGIC THE GATHERING TCG: BORN OF THE GODS FAT PACK||DEC132339||WZK|
|10||MAGIC THE GATHERING CCG: DUEL DECKS JACE VS. VRASKA||JAN148058||WZK|
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About the Author - Jude Terror
Jude Terror is the Webmaster Supreme of The Outhouse and a sarcastic ace reporter dedicated to delivering irreverent comics and entertainment news to The Outhouse's dozens of loyal readers. Driven by a quest for vengeance, Jude Terror taught himself to program and joined The Outhouse. He instantly began working toward his goal of forcing the internet comics community to take itself less seriously and failing miserably. Ironically, our webmaster, whose website skills know no end, has very little understanding of social networks or how they work. Regardless, you can find him on Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr, but would probably have the most luck just emailing him.
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