Merchandising

In this issue: When has merchandising gone too far, or is there even such a thing? Plus, don’t be THAT guy… At least that is what everyone is saying.

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18 Comments

  1. The Great NateO
    August 13, 2011 at 12:25 pm — Reply

    In today’s world there is no limit to what can and will be merchandised. There is a market for every variation of anything. They even have a doll now that will teach little girls how to breast feed. Not that I’m getting one but it there. I’m sure there is a limit, but for now I can not see it. I think my biggest issue with merchandising is that you have no time to breathe between this limited edition and that series number. I would say ease back the throttle and give us some time to make some more money to get what we want.

    Bottom line is we are consumers, if there is a market for someone to make something, it will be made. Then I will probably go and get it because “WOW that cool, I need that”. Like Major Spoilers Coasters.

    They make it, we buy it, and they make money.

    P.S. GO, GO, Power Rangers!

    • August 13, 2011 at 2:52 pm — Reply

      You mean like THESE Major Spoilers Coasters…

      • The Great NateO
        August 13, 2011 at 5:26 pm — Reply

        YES YES YES, Stephen you are such a big tease!

  2. SpiderLover
    August 13, 2011 at 4:12 pm — Reply

    Merchandising is there a limit? I think that the fear of watering down a brand is small potatoes to the fear companies have of missing out on cold hard cash. People buy a lot of things that they probably shouldn’t. How many Superman Decals are on cars? Back when it happened it may have been seen as too far until people bought it all the time. Now it’s just smart business.

    It’s only a dumb idea if you don’t make profit.

  3. Z. Woolf
    August 13, 2011 at 5:03 pm — Reply

    Like has been said, I don’t think that merchandising can go to far as long as a company is still pulling in a profit from the products they sell. And dealing with pop culture it seems hard for a company to not make a profit on most items. Rob Guillory was tweeting this morning about Chew lunch boxes and coozies, which I would love to have. My roommate has an Optimus Prime helmet. Stephen showed off his set of Locke and Key key’s the other day. Fact is, nerds love their merchandise.

  4. Ricco
    August 13, 2011 at 6:09 pm — Reply

    The argument thing really bugs me, for example when you say something is “evil” or “good” you are making a religious argument, because what is evil or good is a notion that was created in a religious context. Or how science can be approached as a religion, think about it, how many have actually seen an electron? Only the “cardinals” (professors and scientists) or “anointed ones” (physics students and so on) have seen this thing we all agree exists, most of us don’t know how gravity/electricity/light/sound REALLY works, but we take as an article of faith that what scientists tell us is true.

    Arguments can be made for anything, if you are smart enough anything can ring true. Heck I have a friend who is an historian and whenever he starts to make an arguments in his field it would take months of research to actually find out if it’s true or if he made it up, and this is for an argument with a more or less definitive outcome. Now add the “taste/opinion” factor to an argument, and you have an impossibility for an universal truth. In this cases the better argument can win the debate, but only if the other side agrees to it.

    Matthew says that the “my friends said so” arguments doesn’t hold water, while I mostly agree (if said friends have an expertise in the subject, their opinion can count) if the other side sees it as the only argument that can define what is true then no matter how smart/logical Matthew’s argument is the debate will never reach a satisfying resolution.
    This is the best argument in any discussion: which ever BOTH sides agrees is relevant.

    • August 14, 2011 at 5:50 pm — Reply

      Matthew says that the “my friends said so” arguments doesn’t hold water, while I mostly agree (if said friends have an expertise in the subject, their opinion can count) if the other side sees it as the only argument that can define what is true then no matter how smart/logical Matthew’s argument is the debate will never reach a satisfying resolution.

      Wait… What?

      • Ricco
        August 14, 2011 at 10:02 pm — Reply

        You were saying how the argument you hear in the net that bothers you the most is “I asked all my friends and they agree/disagree” (or something to that effect), you said it wasn’t a valid argument since they are too small a population to be representative.

        What I was trying to say is that, for example: I have a lot of friends/coworkers who work as accountants/in accounting and all agree buying US dollars (I’m Canadian) right now is a good move since the American economy will bounce back eventually and those dollars will have a good return when converted to Canadian currency at that moment. So even if they are a small portion of the population the argument “my friends said so” is valid here.

        The other part simply means that stubborn people will stick to the “my friends and I agree, Final Crisis sucked!” and no matter how you point out the sell numbers and positive reviews they’ll never change their minds. Because what his group of friends thinks is the only point of reference they accept for the quality of Final Crisis as a story arc.

        Hope it’s clearer.

        • August 15, 2011 at 4:39 pm — Reply

          You were saying how the argument you hear in the net that bothers you the most is “I asked all my friends and they agree/disagree” (or something to that effect), you said it wasn’t a valid argument since they are too small a population to be representative.

          Well, not exactly… I said that I hate when people say “No one I know says X,” which is a little different.

          It should also be noted that simply because one’s particular pool of reference is correct does NOT make one’s argument itself valid. It just means that your pool of reference got it right, which leads many to the implication that their pool of reference is always right, which leads to that same fallacy. I’m not in the business of changing anyone’s mind (mileage varies, after all) but one should at least TRY to play fair in one’s arguments. No one that I know thinks that Katy Perry is a multitalented superstar, but the woman sells millions of albums. Obviously, in matters of taste and opinion, there is a great divergence and a huge ground to cover between the two extremes.

          • Ricco
            August 15, 2011 at 6:23 pm — Reply

            “It should also be noted that simply because one’s particular pool of reference is correct does NOT make one’s argument itself valid. It just means that your pool of reference got it right, which leads many to the implication that their pool of reference is always right, which leads to that same fallacy.”

            Okay, I didn’t get that part, it makes more sense now.

            P.S. If everyone tried “playing fair” in arguments the world would be a better place, but they don’t, they really, really don’t.

    • August 19, 2011 at 10:41 pm — Reply

      Winner winner chicken dinner

  5. Christina Anderson
    August 13, 2011 at 6:39 pm — Reply

    Now I want Legion cupcakes!
    Side note- Hostess also had a Hulk “scary cakes” version of the Flash cakes! and the Green lantern snow balls look nasty
    I don’t think merchandise can have a limit, except the limit of the mind of merchandisers themselves. The baking equipment is actually a damn good idea. Instead of buying the already made cupcakes of whatever superhero- just buy the mold and make the cake yourself. Willem-Sonama is expensive nice baking equipment though. (see this DC/Warner Bros.? THIS is how you get kids into your comics this right here!)

  6. Tondi- (Villian)
    August 13, 2011 at 9:43 pm — Reply

    I really like the look of those cupcakes! They all looked shocked that they’re about to be eaten.

    “I’m the best at what I do….bein tasty”

  7. August 13, 2011 at 11:32 pm — Reply

    If they made tampons they shoulden’t make Spiderman but Morbius or Dracula – just saying :)

  8. August 15, 2011 at 6:47 pm — Reply

    I believe Stephen can make it rain. However, since he’s a bald white guy from Kansas, I don’t believe he can dance.

    The Internet argument style which I hate the most is quite possibly the opposite of the one Matthew describes. It occurs when someone assumes one person’s belief is indicative of an entire subgroup’s perspective. For example, if I’m unlucky enough to be locked in a religious debate with my friend, it will usually involve him telling me he heard somewhere on AM radio that someone thinks the Rapture is coming. He’ll then imply all Christians must believe the Rapture is coming, and he won’t believe otherwise, even I tell him at least one Christian – the one he’s talking to – doesn’t believe the Rapture is coming.

    I’ve seen this argument style extending to comic books a lot too. The rationale seems to be that since one is both knowledgeable of a subject and passionate about that subject too, they must be incapable of rational thought, since they must be raving fanboys/fangirls/religious fanatics/sport fans/pet owners.

    I also really enjoyed the conversation on Power Rangers – I’ve been toying with writing something along the lines of Power Rangers, and your reboot conversation has further stimulated my ideas!

  9. Argonaut15
    August 17, 2011 at 1:14 am — Reply

    Rodrigo talked about how we, the consumers, control the market by buying or ignoring products like Marvel cake pans. I was surprised that Paul Chadwick’s Concrete was not mentioned. Chadwick quite effectively and brilliantly used the idea of overexposure to “hide” Concrete’s secret.

    By plastering his image on everything and by having Concrete appear on any and all television programs, the world became sick of him and didn’t want to hear anymore about him. Thus, the media had no financial reason to pursue him unlike “So-and-So watch: Day 17” that rots the airwaves (or cables or whatever your preferred mode of infotainment is).

  10. Dan Hunter
    August 19, 2011 at 4:09 am — Reply

    Things I’ve learned from this pod cast
    -I’d forgotten that I prefered the Superman popcicles to others growing up. (but we called them Ice lollies).
    -Paul’s Boutique by the Beastie Boys might be worth checking out.
    -I like comic books and cooking so would be up for a comic themed cake mold and matching oven gloves
    (If there’s a market for it people will buy it, if not they won’t)
    -Stephen’s dancing is the reason it rains a lot in New Zealand
    -We are approaching armageddon when Stephen rolls out his English accent, Gawd Bless you gov’ner

    • August 19, 2011 at 8:00 am — Reply

      The rain dance only works in the region I’m located, so I would look to a local witch doctor for your recent weather woes…
      The Mayan Calendar does indeed end in 2012…
      I am a good dancer…

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