This is a series of Tweets written by Christopher Butcher, manager of The Beguiling Books & Art in Toronto, Ontario, on Sunday, November 27, 2017 as he completed his Previews orders for January.  Reprinted with permission and edited for this purpose by Butcher.

I don’t even know what to say about this Previews catalogue.  The whole direct market seems so insane, so self-destructive.

How do I put this – Nintendo is a huge international company with lots of popular IP, like Super Mario.  Mario is a headliner, an A-List character and piece of IP, and customers wanna buy Mario games.

Customers are generally less interested in his iterations, like Luigi.  Luigi games sell less than Mario games, often by a lot.  Luigi shows up in games where they don’t want to dilute Mario’s IP too much.

Sometimes Nintendo iterates Mario and it really works though, you get a character like Wario.  People love Wario, what an unexpected twist.  Wario has a whole world now, Wario was appearing almost as often as Mario for a little while there.

But then Nintendo came up with an iteration of an iteration of an iteration, a Waluigi. It worked in its tiny context, but Nintendo isn’t dumb enough to launch a franchise with Waluigi.

But Marvel would.  Marvel would have 14 Mario different Mario series, plus 3 Luigi series, 8 Wario series, and 2 starring Waluigi.  Every one of those series cannibalizing the sales of each other.  Every one confusing potential customers.  Every one of them cluttering up store racks.

This is Marvel’s behavior with their own IP, with their own characters.  They’re hurting themselves, they’re hurting their creators working on these books, and they’re hurting stores especially.  Marvel is grinding their IP to dust.

The center will not hold, folks.  January/February/March is going to be a bloodbath of cancellations, no one can order this many books.

The opinions expressed in this Talk Back are solely those of the writer, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the editorial staff of