From Bleeding Cool: "After Twenty-Six Years, DC Comics Rumoured to Close Vertigo"

It seems some Warner Bros. suit questioned why more Vertigo properties aren't fodder for movies, and learned that's because most of them are creator-owned. The reaction was to change Vertigo's contracts with creators, which led a lot of them to go elsewhere. And the series that have come along since haven't set the world on fire. 

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Are those creator-owned too? Because that's what helped sink Vertigo in the first place!

I think it was said that new titles would have contracts that favored DC.

Philip Portelli said:

Are those creator-owned too? Because that's what helped sink Vertigo in the first place!

Paul Levitz offers his observations about the end of Vertigo on ICv2: "BRANDS LIVE. BRANDS DIE."

As far as I know, nothing's been said officially. The Beat story says: "The EW story doesn’t mention whether these stories are creator-owned or not, but they are certainly creator driven and DC did promise that they wouldn’t be backing away from creator owned material, despite Vertigo going away." 

(I added a link to the Entertainment Weekly story that announced the line.)

Richard Willis said:

I think it was said that new titles would have contracts that favored DC.

Philip Portelli said:

Are those creator-owned too? Because that's what helped sink Vertigo in the first place!

Thanks for sharing this! It goes without saying, but Levitz is super smart about the business of comics. On Facebook, he's been sharing reminiscences of Vertigo, and they've all been worth reading. He strikes me as a thoughtful guy I'd really like to have worked for. 

ClarkKent_DC said:

Paul Levitz offers his observations about the end of Vertigo on ICv2: "BRANDS LIVE. BRANDS DIE."

Great article, I agree. I need to go follow him on Facebook.

Rob Staeger (Grodd Mod) said:

Thanks for sharing this! It goes without saying, but Levitz is super smart about the business of comics. On Facebook, he's been sharing reminiscences of Vertigo, and they've all been worth reading. He strikes me as a thoughtful guy I'd really like to have worked for. 

ClarkKent_DC said:

Paul Levitz offers his observations about the end of Vertigo on ICv2: "BRANDS LIVE. BRANDS DIE."

And another post-Vertigo title from Black Label! A high fantasy book called The Last God comes out in October from writer Phillip Kennedy Johnson, artist Riccardo Federici, colorist Dean White, and letterer Tom Napolitano. Newsarama has details and images.

If they keep it up, it'll almost seem like closing Vertigo wasn't a change of publishing direction at all. It looks like DC was preparing for another big Vertigo launch like last year's, and decided they'd have a broader reach if they didn't call them Vertigo books. Sadly, I think they're probably right.  But Black Label has gotten a LOT more interesting to me in the past couple days.

Looks like DC's also bringing back Hellblazer, under the Sandman Universe sub-imprint.  Which will presumably be Black Label by that point. Starts with a one-shot in October by Simon Spurrier and Marcio Takara, followed by a new ongoing series, John Constantine, Hellblazer, in November, by Spurrier and Aaron Campbell. The Beat has more.

So Constantine can be in Justice League Action AND in a Black Label book! Talk about mixed signals!

Yep!

Then again, so can Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman.

Just read “The Hourman,” the first story in Sandman Mystery Theatre that I don’t have in trade paperback. And reading it in single issues, something became apparent to me about Vertigo that I’d forgotten:

Vertigo gave DC a venue to sell a different class of ad. Look at the Vertigo books at the time, and there are so many music ads for grunge and hard rock groups, along with ads for things like Vampire: The Masquerade and horror movies and publishers. These ads would have been out of place next to the bright colors of The Flash or Wonder Woman, but in Vertigo, they were part of the package. And when ads dried up, so did a large reason for Vertigo’s existence as a separate entity. If all ads are house ads -- and they pretty much all are these days -- then there’s no real need to publish a separate class of books to offer as an easy package for the ad sales team.

It’s no wonder Vertigo was running on fumes for so long. The creative pedigree of a “Vertigo book” was a nice shorthand to market to fans, but it was essential to sell to advertisers. And without that ad-sales motivation, there’s no longer any reason not to fold Constantine and Swamp Thing into the main DCU.

That reminds me of what Marvel did with its MAX books. Having characters like Wolverine, Thor and Nick Fury appearing in both MAX and regular Marvel comics seemed to me to be inviting a lot of bad publicity. I guess they dodged that bullet. 

Philip Portelli said:

So Constantine can be in Justice League Action AND in a Black Label book! Talk about mixed signals!

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