Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Successful CIH? Covers


Benjamin Hobbs:

Last week I showcased rejected CIH? covers  In the comments, there was a discussion as to what makes a successful cover.  This week I'll share my thoughts on this subject.

When selecting a cover for parody, there are three things it should be:
-Iconic
-Popular
-Not drawn from extreme angles.

All of the Cerebus and Dore images are drawn at about eye level, so while a parody of something drawn from a bird's eye view or a dog's eye view is possible, it's a much higher level of difficulty.  (This rules out Justice League '87 and possibly The Death of Phoenix, at least for me. Hi Travis!)

The actual parody cover needs to:
-Be funny
-Have Cerebus on the cover
-Incorporate Dore etchings
-Have some resemblance to the cover being parodied.
-Imply some amount of story.  (Which, hopefully has the effect of enticing the browsing customer to buy the comic.)

An example of an successful, and accepted, parody cover would be CEREBUS WOMAN:


CEREBUS WOMAN was accepted with just a few tweaks to the cover gag. Dave wrote a comic to go with the cover in very short order.   The success of this cover, to my thinking, is that it was made including all of the above criteria.

An example of a cover that has been accepted, but has not yet been used is SEX AARDVARKS:

SEX AARDVARKS meets most of the above criteria.  The biggest pitfall is that the cover I submitted (above) wasn't that funny. Dave wrote some hilarious cover copy that really livens it up.  This is a weaker cover than CEREBUS WOMAN because no story is implied.

Another example of an accepted cover that hasn't been used is  THE AMNESIAC SPIDER-VARK:
Dave re-wrote must of the dialogue on this one but, to me, the biggest failing of this cover is that it doesn't showcase what the book is selling, which is Cerebus and Dore images together. 

An example of an unsuccessful cover (one that has been flatly rejected) is FOR THE LOVE OF CEREBUS:
The cover being parodied isn't Iconic, it doesn't appeal to the casual browser at a LCS, it's not a specifically popular cover, and no story is implied.

Did I miss any key elements that would make for a successful CIH? cover?  Let me know in the comments!


ALSO:

Don't forget! You can place your orders for THE UN-BEDABLE VARK NOW!

Next week: Something related to Cerebus in Hell? no doubt.

7 comments:

JLH said...

I think the Iron Manticore stuff is going to flop pretty big. Maybe the Demon in the Bottle parody might do better, but the Tales of Suspense parody one? It just doesn't seem a very strong contender, despite Dave backing it 110%.

eric fennessey said...

Just noticed that Cerebus in Hell? #1 is on ComiXology today, was this expected? I don’t recall any mention here, but I might have missed it.

Carson Grubaugh said...

The Sex Criminals one!!! Ha. If Dave knew the premise of that book I think he could spin plenty of comedy gold.

Lee Thacker said...

I love all of those parody covers... especially 'The Un-bedable Vark'! (that was my idea) :) I reckon that Amazing Spider-Man #96 would make a good parody cover too (definitely a classic) and there should be an EC comics cover parodied too. As for appealing to the current zeitgeist, I haven't got clue one!

Jeff said...

Ooo! What about PSYCHO #24, Dave's first professional work (story only)?!?

Jeff said...

CREEPY #79 and HOWARD THE DUCK #8. Both with work by Dave. I'm throwing out ideas only, because I'm not an artist and I don't have PhotoShop. (Sorry.)

Travis Pelkie said...

What would be interesting would be to compare the sales on each of the previous one shots and see which ones sold the most, and see if that could be attributable to the parody cover itself, the title of the book (positing that those with "Cerebus" in the title will sell more), or something else.

And I kinda knew those covers I mentioned probably wouldn't "work", but I was more mentioning them in a "these comics have been homaged a lot and maybe Dave and crew should take a crack at them", not thinking through the actual logistics.