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CBR TV @ CCI: Dan DiDio on the New 52, Digital Comics, “Watchmen” & More

DC Comics Co-Publisher Dan DiDio visited the CBR yacht at Comic-Con International in San Diego to discuss his and Keith Giffen’s contribution to the New 52, “OMAC,” and what it is about the character and concept that he finds so appealing. He also discusses the continuing issue of digital comics, the effects of piracy on sales and what publishers can do to develop and implement digital initiatives.

DiDio then dives into the whole New 52 relaunch, including how far beyond the initial 52 titles the publisher sees as viable, his and Jim Lee’s meet and greets with retailers around the US and what they learned from their encounters. He also explains DC’s approach to the relaunch and its decision to diversify their line with the initiative in hopes of capturing readers who may not be interested in the company’s traditional super hero offerings while satisfying long term fans.

Finally, DiDio addresses the rumors that have been surfacing online over the last several months in with regard to DC’s interest in heading back into the universe of “Watchmen” or even possibly introducing the mythos into the DCU.

  • Bernardo Fabrica

    i live in portugal. there are no comic shops over here. i buy collections from marvel, dc, image, etc. when i like the story. yes I pirate comics. if they are avaliable only to my ipad i buy them. but most of them i pirate. but hey, it’s not like i could buy them comics in the first place.

    • Anonymous

      Yeah, the piracy argument is irrelevant when a company does not distribute their product in your country. As always, American publishers aren’t thinking about customers in countries outside the U.S. in these interviews. They assume they’re talking to a U.S.-only audience, just like the game publishers who describe their product as being “available to everyone” when they really just mean the U.S.

  • Bernardo Fabrica

    i live in portugal. there are no comic shops over here. i buy collections from marvel, dc, image, etc. when i like the story. yes I pirate comics. if they are avaliable only to my ipad i buy them. but most of them i pirate. but hey, it’s not like i could buy them comics in the first place.

  • http://twitter.com/fxhart Frank Hart

    Not one question regarding the Golden Age and the JSA!?

    • Flip Maker

      Exactly why would you expect that question to be asked? That’s kinda nuts.

      • http://twitter.com/fxhart Frank Hart

        You mean the dozens of characters that looked like like they were wiped out of the new 52 continuity? u00a0Yeah that would be nuts to tell the fans what happened to them…

    • Flip Maker

      Exactly why would you expect that question to be asked? That’s kinda nuts.

  • Bene

    nnDISTRESSED READER’S PRAYERnnnOh Holy KIRBY, all-powerful creator of universes.nnnProtect us from Reboots and new versions of the origins for my favoritencharacters.nnnKeep my mind from these silly ideas.nnnBoth my collection of DC and Marvel,nnnDo not let these kind of crap to get near them.nnnEnlighten these ignorant.nnnMay the writers be wise.nnnAnd the pencillers virtuous.nnnMake them understand that it only takes one good story and nothing else.nnnPour your wisdom over them.nnnAnd if they repudiate it, KILL THEM ALL!!!!!nnnAmen!nu00a0nn

  • http://thebird-feeder.com/ Ben Carlsen

    Is it just me, or when DiDio is being asked about Watchmen does he seem like he doesn’t really know much about it? u00a0Perhaps he’s playing dumb because he doesn’t want to reveal anything, but… u00a0I dunno.

  • Tyler

    A solid interview. u00a0On the subject of piracy, I’ve done a decent amount of research and no one seems to notice things like Green Lantern Corp being torrented more than Green Lantern. u00a0People want to pay for some Green Lantern, but they’d rather spend some of their money in other franchises, instead of one. u00a0

  • Omegasaga

    He peddles us more BS every year.u00a0 How can you beleive in ANYTHING he promotes.nThe entire reboot says that EVERYTHING they have done the last few yrs was a pointless failure.nnThe reboot is a convoluted one.u00a0Its not a fresh / from scratch reboot:u00a0″somethings happend, but now they happend this way”.nnCreative teams come and go.u00a0 its the foundation that needs to be strong. This DCnu reboot has a weak foundation

    • Guest

      So are you mad because everything done up until now DOESN’T count, or because it’s not a fresh reboot and that it DOES count?

      • Omegasaga

        A fresh reboot would have been tolerable.u00a0 Especially if the currenty books lead into it.nA page or two from flashpoint saying- “this is now the new DC universe” with a splash page, DOES NOT make it a lead in event.nnWhat bothers me is change for sake of change that is NOT better.nSaying certain things happend but “totaly different that the way it was printed”u00a0 annoys me to no end.u00a0{ MARVEL ruined spiderman by doing that.}nnAt the end of the day we have a more confusing continuity right out of the gates. And a reboot NO ONE asked for.

    • Guest

      So are you mad because everything done up until now DOESN’T count, or because it’s not a fresh reboot and that it DOES count?

  • http://www.facebook.com/chrisbutson Christopher Butson

    I can’t watch the video because the ad freezes it up every time I load it.

  • http://twitter.com/serpico71 CHris Kaufman

    I love what DC is doing. u00a0They have been successful over the last three years in putting out timeless classics like Blackest Night, and Morrison’s Batman run, while beefing up their staple characters and bringing back Barry Allen. u00a0Now they’ve turned their attention on their huge stable of great but mismanaged past stars and have award winning teams on all of the titles. u00a0I can’t wait to read every 52 twice. u00a0 Very excited about Men at War, but wish they’d kept the original Sgt. Rock in the title. u00a0BATWOMAN – wow

    • Anonymous

      Paid shill.nn”timeless classics like Blackest Night” – wow.nn”award winning teams” – a phrase only a PR flack would utter.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sage-Ashford/1290900135 Sage Ashford

        Wow.u00a0 Is this what we’ve come to?u00a0 I like Batman and Robin and Batman, Inc.u00a0 I enjoyed Geoff’s epic GL story (still enjoying it), and I want over half of the 52 titles being launched…why should that make me a corporate paid shill?

    • Omegasaga

      I advise you to research ZERO HOUR & ZERO monthu00a0 and the BS that surround all of that in 1994.nThe exact same type of hype and reboot direction.u00a0 It amounted to nothing within 6 months.nnAlsou00a0 history has proven that relaunches only get people attention for a few months.u00a0u00a0u00a0 Plus creative teams come and go very quickly REGARDLESS of what DC says their future plans are.u00a0 Beleive NOTHING they hype.

  • Gdkeen

    He’s wrong about timely shipping being the most important thing, and that people will follow a story and characters despite changes in artists.u00a0 To me at least, consistent, high-quality art is more important than a book being on the shelf the week I expect it.nnI looked ahead at the solicits for their new 52, and many books have multiple pencilers credited.u00a0 I’m avoiding those titles strictly on that basis.

    • Anonymous

      Word. Changes in creative teams is the #1 reason for readers dropping (or picking up) titles. Shipping on time is certainly important, but a string of fill-in artists is the best way to piss off readership, and a huge red flag that something is seriously wrong on the book.nnGetting their books back on a regular schedule *should* be a top priority for DC, but they’re going about it the wrong way. They should be fixing the underlying structural problems that result in delays. Most artists can (and do) meet a monthly schedule *if they’re given the right support*.nnIronically, Jim Lee is the worst DC artist for missing deadlines.

  • Xingyiquan5

    You guys how DARE Didio add Watchmen to DCU!? That’s disgusting and WRONG!nDidio is ruining the rocksolid legacy of the DCU.nThey ran out of story ideas, so of course step one is to ruin everything.nBasically this is as if Marvel had canceled everything when they put out the New Universe. nExcept that DP7 was actually good!

  • Xingyiquan5

    “It’s not about publishing a story…”nThis is totally driven by the Marketing Department.n”We can’t go back..”nAll marketing and sales people care about is increasing the brand and readership. NOT satisfying existing fans!nA new MBA shows up from Harvard and declares they NEED to broaden the brand ASAP, give up the core nerds and reach out, make it bigger, biGGER, BIGGER!nthen Crash.nThis totally smacks of outside consultant trying to MONITIZE the biz and maximize their products etc.nSo this guy is gonna leverage watchmen to increase market share.nIn other words to hell with authenticity and the very heart that made these stories great.nDidio is killing DC.

    • Omegasaga

      He officialy kills DC in September.nnThe damage that this reboot is about to do will be hard to recover from. nExpect the next 10 yrs of DC trying to backbeddleu00a0 and make sense of this mishmoshed reboot.nnHistory has proven that relaunches DO NOT bring in new readers.nHistory has prove that continuity IS important to fans.

  • Layters

    That was incredibly honest and sensible with regards to the pirating. He sees value in in in terms of people reading digital and tehn hopefully wanting to own the product.

    • SPTO

      I agree with you on this. There is a core of people who will buy the product but there are a multitude of problems in that distribution isn’t exactly the greatest (I really believe the floppies should be sold at the chain bookstores as well as TPBs etc which is already the case) and the price can be a bit daunting. Let’s say you want 5-10 titles from DC and Marvel every week you’ll be BROKE by the end of a month! nnThat being said piracy does allow for those who can’t get access to a comics shop to read the material they want and i’m sure some of these people at least buy TPBs and collected editions at times. I know I buy a few myself though my eyesight is not good and it’s extremely difficult to read the physical copies so I have resorted to piracy. It’s not something i’m particularly proud of but it’s the best way for me to actually read the things i’m interested in. nnAt least with piracy you can see that there’s a sizable market out there though if DC and Marvel want to make digital comics work they need to use a better interface than what they currently use which is clunky at best and unusable at worse.

    • Omegasaga

      as long as a montly comic is an unfinished 20 page story… i will pirate it.nnPLUS:u00a0 has anyone noticed how difficult it is to even buy comic books anymore?nnBorders is gone.nLCSu00a0 even in the New Jersey close to NYC are are impossible to find.u00a0 The ones that do exist are DUMPS that never have what people want.nnI support Pirated comics from the big Two 10000 %

  • gargl

    WATCHMEN’ prequels and/or sequels : OKAY.nu00a0Mixing it with the DCnU, even with the previous one it would have sound..you know, strange..here and now it just sounds pathetic.

  • Dalecrain

    “Loaddown”??? This is the guy that is saying DC has it all figured out?!?

  • http://twitter.com/thejimg jim gorr

    That was a pretty weak interview, not one hard question asked… Action and Detective should have never been restarted…

  • http://twitter.com/serpico71 CHris Kaufman

    A Digital Pirate made me a Comic Store Owner. u00a0(Sounds like a B-horror film!) u00a0Yes, I’m the extreme, but let’s just say pirating made me a collector again. u00a0I collected when I was 9-16 (1979-1985) years old. u00a0after 18 years of not reading a comic, I found my old collection, and, in interest, I downloaded The Long Halloween, Dark City, Walking Dead, Y-the last Man, all the Batman comics from 1-600 Detective, all the old Sgt. Rock’s, and probably a thousand of others. u00a0Of those 1000 comics I downloaded I probably read just over 50. u00a0(Pirates are greedy, they’ll download an entire month of comics and read one title). u00a0But I started buying too. u00a0Long Halloween made me realize what I had been missing, and even though I could get these comics for free, b4 I knew it, I was paying a $200/month easily for the paper. u00a0But that’s my generation. u00a0I’m the 30-40 year old guy DC is hoping will buy digital and jump back in. u00a0 Digital is great for back issues, that aren’t collectibles. u00a0The retailers never have them all anyway. u00a0Day of digital we’ll see how that goes, but I think your losses will outnumber the potential gains from personal experience. u00a0I think most pirates wouldn’t be buying comics anyway and if they could not get them for free they just would not be reading, but unless DC takes pirates to court like Napster, they know they can’t do anything about it.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_QCNGWNRTB6TMKK57C2DB5N3FCY Lance Drew

    for those who wants to watch hero theme shows why not try watching it through online tv sites such as tvhook.com where you can watch it for free. just sharing my thoughts.

  • Kryptonite No More

    Hack.

  • http://twitter.com/espanyolusa Armando G

    Dan Didio will soon be looking for new employment, and DC Comics will be interviewing for his position. Itu00b4su00a0 a good thing people. Now if we could only get Quesada on a one way ticket to a box condo

  • MrMiracle1000

    I generally don’t like to make blanket statements of personality, but if the interviewer is honestly interested in seeing a sequel to Watchmen, then he probably should not be doing this job. Is there seriously anyone who actually cares about comic books who think this would be a good idea?