In response to yesterday's post in which James Gannon gave his opinion on The Muppets' move to Marvel Comics where the first for issues of The Muppet Show Comic Book by Roger Langridge will be reprinted, repackaged, and resold. As we said, here at The Muppet Mindset we attempt to showcase both sides of the opinion spectrum so today we are happy to bring the opinions of one who finds the move to Marvel to be a good thing.
Ryan Dosier - I'd like to start off by saying that I am the last person to ever even attempt to make the claim that what BOOM! Studios did with the Muppets in the comic book form was nothing short of revolutionary. What the talented people at BOOM! did with The Muppet Show Comic Book and Muppet Classics was fantastic. It brought to the forefront the talent of numerous artists and writers all while inherently capturing the spirit of the Muppets on the printed page.
But, at the same time, I am also the first person to say that BOOM! comics are sometimes incredibly hard to find. Sure, you can find month-old copies of The Incredibles or Cars comics at Barnes and Noble, but how often do you find the latest copy of The Muppet Show Comic Book "Monster Mash" or Muppet Sherlock Holmes waiting for you in the comic book section of your local bookstore? Well... how often do you find X-Men, Spider-Man, in all their numerous incarnations, in said bookstore comic book sections? Quite a bit more often than Muppets, I should say.
Well, that's the beauty of synergy when Disney owns both Marvel Comics and The Muppets, it only makes sense to see the Muppets move to Marvel for a much wider exposure. I completely understand the dissatisfaction people have with not receiving new Muppet stories right away from this deal... but the four issues included in Roger Langridge's "Meet the Muppets" are some of the best, are they not? So it only makes sense to start off introducing a brand new, much wider audience of readers to these characters with these stories--that also conveniently act as introductions to who the four main characters are.
As disappointing as it might be for some, the reprints of these comics are not exactly intended for us--the dedicated fans who have already purchased them. They are intended to grow the audience, spread the world of the Muppets to the masses, and entertain with them before a massive big-budget feature film comes out this fall. These Marvel reprints will be able to go places that BOOM! comics never could: Disney Store shelves, bookstore marquees, grocery store check-out lines... loads of places that loads of people look every day.
Reprinting The Muppet Show Comic Book is a way to provide a huge audience--the audience that is reached by Marvel Comics (one of the two largest comic companies in the world)--with cheap ($5.99 for 96 pages), quality, award-winning entertainment that has already proven itself to be a knockout hit. By ensuring that the Muppets can reach a wide audience--even in their comic form--Disney is essentially saying that they want these characters to be known and appreciated before they try to make it big with a feature film in November.
It is this Muppet fan's opinion that the Muppets' move to Marvel is essentially Disney saying that they do care about the dedicated fans like us--heck, they printed these comics for us in the first place--but they are extremely interested in finding a wider audience for these characters. If we want The Muppets to be a success this fall, it is widely-available, affordable, quality decisions like this that we have to expect--and appreciate--from the Mouse House.
They have to build their audience further before expanding it with new material. It's business, it's entertainment. There's no saying that this Marvel deal won't yield new material. No one has made that claim and I would say that there is quite a good chance of seeing new stuff down the line. We'll just have to wait and see.
On another note... how awesome are these Muppet comics, huh? I'm gonna go re-read all of mine now, I think.
The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier