DCs target market

In this issue: DC has a new Buying Target Audience, a listener wants to know where to start with Green Lantern, and for some reason, all of this feels like we’ve been there before.

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1 Comment

  1. litanyofthieves
    July 3, 2011 at 12:09 am — Reply

    I’m honestly a little surprised… I didn’t see a whole ton of outrage about this demographics announcement on any of the sites I go on. But I think you guys are right that it is an overreaction. Furthermore, imagine the male-privilege nerd rage that would have happened had the situation been reversed, and DC came out and said “We are now primarily targeting the female 18-35 demographic.” The Intertubes definitely would have cracked in half.

    Rodrigo, I believe when you mentioned women in movies, you were referring to the Bechdel Test.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bLF6sAAMb4s

    http://bechdeltest.com/

    While I agree with you guys mostly, and I definitely think you have some really good ideas on how companies SHOULD be going about getting more women into comics, as well as where they have failed, I do have some minor nitpicks with a couple of arguments made:

    Matthew’s argument about the shirt sizes not being available are not entirely a good analogy. There are not nearly as many people who wear a 3XL shirt as there are women. It IS in the interest of comic book companies to reach out to these demographics, and it IS possible for them to make returns off the female demographic. (Like Stephen was saying about the DC relaunch, even if half the new people hate it, it still draws in fresh readership that bolsters the industry)
    I would even go so far as to argue that appealing to these demographics is a great way to breathe a lot of new life into comics.

    Secondly, I think that while there is no malice meant in DC’s statement about demographics, that does not mean that it does no harm to getting women into comics. Something about a road to hell and pavement…

    Additionally, DC already HAS the male demographic – that demographic is their captive audience, and while they should certainly not abandon what brought them their bread and butter, pandering ONLY to dudes is bad marketing. In fact, since dudes are their main base, they should be putting more thought and capital into appealing to other demographics, since they HAVEN’T gotten that first one on the house that keeps bringing them back for more.

    Finally, I’d say that the problem of being focused on a male audience is certainly NOT unique to comics, and the biases and privileges of society as a whole play a big part in shaping all parts of that society. I DO think the male bias is more pronounced in comics than other forms of visual media (Except maybe porn) but it’s still a reflection of our greater society.

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