After being part of the Round Table since 2012, I am still unclear on whether comic books, especially periodicals,  can be easily found in other countries without seeking out specialty shops. Since many countries are represented on this board, let's try to clarify this for me and others. It would also be good to hear from some of the 600 members who never seem to post comments.

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I know for a fact that they are sold in train station newsstands in Germany. I found lots of German-language comics, both DC and Marvel, when I've been over there.

Did you form an opinion on the relative cost of the comics vs other magazines, cups of coffee, etc?

Wandering Sensei: Moderator Man said:

I know for a fact that they are sold in train station newsstands in Germany. I found lots of German-language comics, both DC and Marvel, when I've been over there.

They were comparably priced with what they cost in the U.S.

Richard Willis said:

Did you form an opinion on the relative cost of the comics vs other magazines, cups of coffee, etc?

Wandering Sensei: Moderator Man said:

I know for a fact that they are sold in train station newsstands in Germany. I found lots of German-language comics, both DC and Marvel, when I've been over there.

...What size/format did they tend towards?

England/Great Britain is a 'not really' - anthology reprints are available in some stores where newspapers and periodical magazines are sold but original bona-fide comics are only seen in speciality comic shops.

Okay, this is more along the lines of what I've seen in Berlin. Usually the comics have two or three issues worth in them. They're not horribly old, but probably about three to four months.

Richard Mantle said:

England/Great Britain is a 'not really' - anthology reprints are available in some stores where newspapers and periodical magazines are sold but original bona-fide comics are only seen in speciality comic shops.

 Hello. I was reading some of the posts on that forum (that i discovered yesterday), when i came on this topic, and i was thinking my input could be valuable.

You see, i am a french comics reader. And i've been reading a lot, indiferently in their original format (US) or what we have at home. For info, a lot of french readers use a cinematographic terminology to make a distinction : We're calling US format V.O for "Version Originale" (Original Version), like it's a non-dubbed movie ; and we're calling the translation in french V.F for "Version Française" (French Version).

 We're currently seeing a shift in the way american comic-book are sold in my country. A shift that have several causes, but i'm gonna explain in detail later.

 For a long time, american comic-book were being sold in newstands, in what we're calling a "kiosque" format. This format is different from the american format : We have usually several issues in one magazine, for a price lower than the american one.
I'm gonna take an exemple here, it will be a more striking example.
Here, we have a magazine published on July 2018 (who is a new relaunch format, only for the legacy period. Yes, we have Marvel relaunches and Panini Relaunches (who translate and edit the magazine). This one contain the following issues : US Avengers 672-673, Champions 13 andInvincible Iron Man 593-594. For the price of 6euros50.

 This format (and several versions, they changed a lot whith the time) can be found in a lot of newstands, and yes, you can buy them with your newspaper or your cigarette. But usualy, it will cost you a lot of time, because they're well hidden (believe me, as a kid, it was hard just knowing if those books were in the newstand. I was in the countryside at the time).

 For information, our newsstands are indoor, and the interior looks generally like this.
Each village (countryside town) have usually one, we can found one in a lot of trainstation, in the subway, and each city have a lot of them.

 Those format, "Kiosque", can be also found in some bookshop, not necessary specialized, and there is an increase of those since the movies began. It was, since then, for a public very specialized, a niche market.

 This format, cheap and abordable, is slowly dying. For several reasons :

  • Not so cheap anymore : Recently, the price have rised quite a lot. The price i have used in example, 6 euros 50, was an increase. For february, we will have another increase, 1 euro (the price will be 7 euros 50). When i began reding, in the early 2000, the price was 3 euro 80 (with a little less issue in it, let's be honest, one or two). It's no longer the way to began comics, accessible for everyone.
  • The press is in very bad shape : Like any Nation in the world, books is selling poorly. And newstands magazine ? They're dying. Because in addition of poor sale, we have the major distributor (70%of the market) who's in very bad shape financially, and who's taking a big porcentage on the sales.
  • The public does not want it : Let's face it, we, French, are weird. Since the 70's, nearly all of our own comics production are Hardcover only. And we grew with that. And today, a publication who is not a hardcover is something frowned upon. And the young generation of readers doesn't want it.

 So, is it the end of american comic book in France ? Nope, a new format have risen, since the early 2000. And yes, you've guessed it, it's hardcover. More expensive (15-20 euros for 5-6 issues and some sketchs), but prettier for the french public.
And yes, we're finding this format in bookshops, a lot of them. And even in some big brand markets, where american comic book were persona non grata.
And yes,  we're beginning to pay a way more higher price for american comics in french than yesterday. We're even beginning to pay a more expensive price than the US price, sometimes.

If my humble ramblings interrests you, i can talk you later about how the same US comic-book publisher can be translated by several french publishers, how are selected the translated titles and the non translated titles, and all kind of things.

It's been my first post, an heavy one ! ^^

Sn Parod said:

If my humble ramblings interrests you, i can talk you later about how the same US comic-book publisher can be translated by several french publishers, how are selected the translated titles and the non translated titles, and all kind of things.

It's been my first post, an heavy one ! ^^



 photo welcomeani-1.gif

Welcome! We're glad you're here!

...I was under the impression that there were still some British-market native titles, anyway, 2000 AF and spin-offs, and, on the kid's side a couple of remaining such titles...which might be, in paper, subscription and one particular big U.K. chain only. All in that bigger-paged British size, with a short, sntholigy, format. Maybe some Disney titles too, and some reprints of American stuff, in American proportions, three?? stories per issue.

Very interesting post. That is a lot to think about. I can't wait for a follow-up! 

Sn Parod said:

 Hello. I was reading some of the posts on that forum (that i discovered yesterday), when i came on this topic, and i was thinking my input could be valuable.

You see, i am a french comics reader. And i've been reading a lot, indiferently in their original format (US) or what we have at home. For info, a lot of french readers use a cinematographic terminology to make a distinction : We're calling US format V.O for "Version Originale" (Original Version), like it's a non-dubbed movie ; and we're calling the translation in french V.F for "Version Française" (French Version).

 We're currently seeing a shift in the way american comic-book are sold in my country. A shift that have several causes, but i'm gonna explain in detail later.

 For a long time, american comic-book were being sold in newstands, in what we're calling a "kiosque" format. This format is different from the american format : We have usually several issues in one magazine, for a price lower than the american one.
I'm gonna take an exemple here, it will be a more striking example.
Here, we have a magazine published on July 2018 (who is a new relaunch format, only for the legacy period. Yes, we have Marvel relaunches and Panini Relaunches (who translate and edit the magazine). This one contain the following issues : US Avengers 672-673, Champions 13 andInvincible Iron Man 593-594. For the price of 6euros50.

 This format (and several versions, they changed a lot whith the time) can be found in a lot of newstands, and yes, you can buy them with your newspaper or your cigarette. But usualy, it will cost you a lot of time, because they're well hidden (believe me, as a kid, it was hard just knowing if those books were in the newstand. I was in the countryside at the time).

 For information, our newsstands are indoor, and the interior looks generally like this.
Each village (countryside town) have usually one, we can found one in a lot of trainstation, in the subway, and each city have a lot of them.

 Those format, "Kiosque", can be also found in some bookshop, not necessary specialized, and there is an increase of those since the movies began. It was, since then, for a public very specialized, a niche market.

 This format, cheap and abordable, is slowly dying. For several reasons :

  • Not so cheap anymore : Recently, the price have rised quite a lot. The price i have used in example, 6 euros 50, was an increase. For february, we will have another increase, 1 euro (the price will be 7 euros 50). When i began reding, in the early 2000, the price was 3 euro 80 (with a little less issue in it, let's be honest, one or two). It's no longer the way to began comics, accessible for everyone.
  • The press is in very bad shape : Like any Nation in the world, books is selling poorly. And newstands magazine ? They're dying. Because in addition of poor sale, we have the major distributor (70%of the market) who's in very bad shape financially, and who's taking a big porcentage on the sales.
  • The public does not want it : Let's face it, we, French, are weird. Since the 70's, nearly all of our own comics production are Hardcover only. And we grew with that. And today, a publication who is not a hardcover is something frowned upon. And the young generation of readers doesn't want it.

 So, is it the end of american comic book in France ? Nope, a new format have risen, since the early 2000. And yes, you've guessed it, it's hardcover. More expensive (15-20 euros for 5-6 issues and some sketchs), but prettier for the french public.
And yes, we're finding this format in bookshops, a lot of them. And even in some big brand markets, where american comic book were persona non grata.
And yes,  we're beginning to pay a way more higher price for american comics in french than yesterday. We're even beginning to pay a more expensive price than the US price, sometimes.

If my humble ramblings interrests you, i can talk you later about how the same US comic-book publisher can be translated by several french publishers, how are selected the translated titles and the non translated titles, and all kind of things.

It's been my first post, an heavy one ! ^^

Wow, SN, thanks for such a detailed post! When I was on my honeymoon in France, about 15 years ago, I remember stepping into a couple of those newsstands and looking for comics. I don't think I found any there (probably because they were hidden, as you say), but I did find some old French-language DC comics from the 70s in one of the independent book stalls along a road near the seine. I think I even got my hands on a Legion of Super-Heroes comic, IIRC!

Thanks again for such a great post, and Welcome! We're glad you're here!

My head swims with all this information. Merci, m'sieu -- can't wait for more!

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