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Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
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Subj: Responses to all the above posters.
Posted: Wed May 12, 2010 at 10:16:33 am EDT (Viewed 172 times)
Reply Subj: Re: Sure
Posted: Tue May 11, 2010 at 10:41:50 pm EDT (Viewed 19 times)

Lots of opinions and theories thrown about in a relatively short time, so cool.

    I would say not. After Captain Britain and MI13's failure as well as the early cancellation of SWORD, and repeated failures to relaunch The Defenders I do not think there is a market at this time for a new team. Perhaps if a big name like Mark Waid or Grant Morrison were involved then there might be. There are people who will buy titles just for the writer alone. In fact, I would say Alpha Flight's initial success was due to John Byrne's popularity at that time.

I'm glad someone mentioned MI13.

In fairness I'm not a massive Alpha fan but as a UK based reader I was a huge Excalibur fan and as a also had a great fondness for MI13.

The biggest problem I could see with MI13 is that whilst it has an appeal to a British audience - being writen by a British writer, starring predominantly British heroes, being set in the British Isle and having a real feel of and making plenty of nods to old Marvel UK characters and titles such as Deathshead, Motormouth and Killpower - I cant see any real reason for anyone apart from the British to like it.

MI13's appeal is simply too narrow in my opinion. I'm pretty sure the writing has to be considered excellent by any objective standard but is excellent writing alone enough to carry a title if enough people just dont know or care about the characters or the locale? Does the same apply for Alpha?

    Perhaps even a signature name is not enough. Bendis' Spider Woman was a huge flop despite his so-called golden touch. Perhaps if instead of Alpha Flight they called it Northern Avengers, then that might sell.

Sadly I think plastering the word 'Avengers' accross the front page would work at least a little but wouldnt that be a rather cynical move and could we really call it a successful Alpha Flight franchise if it was taken under the Avengers umbrella? Would that really be any different than if the roster just moved south of the border and joined the Avengers proper?

    I think its totally possible. I think most series just need a chance to get a fan base under it. I personally think a series that just focused on the international teams...Alpha Flight, MI:16, Winter Guard, etc would probably be the best way to start the launch of the new books. People want the characters, they just can't support a base. Continually. Also, i think tha tthe "world shrinking" via technology over the past 2 years has probably made some lands seem less intriguing, and therefore he teams seem redundant.

Traditionally 'anthology' series that share the page count amongst several characters or teams dont do very well - look at the likes of Marvel Team-up and Marvel Comics Presents. In fairness I liked both of the most recent volumes of those titles because they appeal to me personally but judging by how poorly they performed they dont appeal to a wider audience. Objectively would fans really go for a title that spotlights several teams instead of concentrating on just one or is that spreading things just a little too thin?

    If there was demand once, there can be again. Demand isn't something that just appears and disappears. It's something that's created with good ideas and what not.

    There's not the same demand for Spawn or Darkness that there once was, but they're still around (think Darkness is still around).

Now besides the fact that I disagree with the opinion that demand is somehow eternal and never really goes away, this comment contradicts itself in saying that if there was demand once there can be again but at the same time suggesting demand might not be what it once was.

Why I actually disagree is because there are probably dozens of examples of titles just like Alpha Flight that once upon a time were pretty successful but have struggled in recent years to make the kind of impact they once did.

Take the likes of She Hulk, Dr Strange, Silver Surfer, Ghost Rider, the Invaders, Namor, New Warriors, Moon Knight and Guardians of the Galaxy to name just a few. Each of these titles enjoyed prominant runs in the past but since the early 90's none of them have been able to enjoy the same level of success they once did despite in most cases several attempts at doing so. Why?

'Bad writing' may have played a part in some cases - because god knows theres been some - but can we say that about Dan Slotts or Peter Davids She-Hulk or Huston and Bensons Moonknight or Abnetts Guardians of the Galaxy? These books appear to have actually been very well written for the most part but still couldnt sell. So if the quality of the writing isnt in question could it be that these characters just dont have the appeal they once did? I'm tempted to believe yes and that like everything else in the world comics are subject to changing trends and demands.

    I didn't really collect the earlier issues of Alpha Flight vol. 1 until around issue #100 or so. I picked up an issue here and there before, but I liked the series. Being an avid X-Men, Defenders, and FF fan I didn't always have the money to pick up Alpha Flight back in the day. If the right characters were in the team (many of the original team), I would pick it up. I would prefer another Alpha Flight series to so many Avengers titles, and the Thunderbolts have changed so many times it's practically unrecognizable. Maybe someday soon we'll get another Alpha Flight series.

I'm trying to avoid the old 'I like/dont like Alpha Flight therefore I would/wouldnt buy it'.

Whilst I personally probably would at least try a new volume of Alpha Flight I'm more interested in how the comic reading public at large could be expected to react. Would a new Alpha title carry enough appeal to draw in enough readers to make it sustainable if not massively successful?

Thunderbolts has never been a massive draw like the Avengers or the X-Men, its been cancelled once, flirted with cancellation several times and has indergone several core changes however it has been around pretty much constantly since its 1997 debut.

You mention T-Bolts as being pretty much unrecognisable and frankly youre correct but is that really a bad thing? Hasnt the advantage of a book like Thunderbolts always been the fact that the loss of a core member need not be fatal because it pretty much has Marvels entire stable of villains from which to pick a replacement? Does that versitility give Thunderbolts a resiliance and adaptability to a changing market and changing demands that other minor franchises like alpha flight dont enjoy?

    In all honesty, it's also two guys argueing about Alpha Flight. \:\)

And now its half a dozen guys arguing about Alpha Flight which was the entire point of the new thread!

    Will we? Maybe, but I would guess it's unlikely. Too many factors are against it, and likewise too many things would have to fall into place first.

You mention finding a 'niche' but what niche could an alpha book fill? Surely the success of books like the Avengers and the X-Men isnt so much that they found a 'niche' (as in a distinct segment of the market) but in the fact that they managed to appeal to a wide segment of the market? Is a 'niche' enough to make Alpha sustainable or does it need to learn to have broader appeal? Is that possible?

I agree that a high profile creative team would help although I also agree with your statement that there doesnt appeal to be a high profile team out there with any real love for the concepts who would want to pilot another attempt at a book. For the record I thought the team of Oeming and Kollins was pretty high profile - not Millar and Hitch high profile but about as high profile as an Alpha Flight franchise could perhaps expect - but certainly a talented duo.

    Americans also don't want to read about international teams. What's the most popular American television show taking place in Canada? I can't name any.

I honestly didnt know the answer to that for sure. It was my guess that Americans wouldnt want to read about an international team although by that reasoning I as a Brit shouldnt want to read about an American team like the Avengers (ignoring the fact i have no choice in what is an American industry). Is that the general consensus amongst American fans?

    I really couldn't care less about niche this or niche that. I read books for the characters in them. I'd read 10 different Avengers books doing basically the same thing, if I liked the characters.

I see alot of sense in that. As much as I like certain books I also like certain characters and have followed them around where ever they have gone - for example I followed the USAgent through Captain America, WCA, Force Works, New Invaders, Omega Flight and Mighty Avengers. If he appeared as an Power Pack ongoing I'd probably follow him there too.

Like the USAgent however are there enough people who actually like Alphas characters to allow the book to be a success even if those fans follow the characters everywhere. With the best will in the world the fact that I love USAgent as a character isnt going to be enough to get us an Agent ongoing book, hes not Wolverine or Spidey - hell, hes not even Captain America.

I read a thread elsewhere where someone asked what made lame villains lame and there were some very good responses explaining why some characters just arent as interesting as others. Is it the case that Alpha Flight just arent very interesting, exciting or dynamic when you get right down to it?

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