The wild story of a brand new comedian e book writer con artist who purchased up well-liked 90s comics IP | Boing Boing

The wild story of a new comic book publisher con artist who bought up popular 90s comics IP | Boing Boing


Terrific Productions, LLC introduced themselves with nice fanfare at San Diego Comic-Con in 2019:

Terrific Manufacturing is new writer Fall 2019. We’re staffed by former senior comedian e book professionals and we’re in search of skilled artists from movie, animation, gaming, video-gaming to interrupt into comedian e book work. You could have the drive, creativity and keenness. We may even evaluate severe non-professionals as our contribution to the Comedian-con to assist the subsequent technology of artists. These with the suitable stuff will be capable of obtain paid work assignments with Terrific. We’re additionally providing alternatives for trainees that need an opportunity to assist Terrific turn into a premiere unbiased writer.

The corporate, owned by Andrew Rev, claimed to be the “America’s quickest rising comics writer.” It hadn’t truly revealed something — nor had it introduced any particular publication plans — but it surely did personal the rights to Youngblood, a really 90s Rob Liefeld creation that was additionally the primary comedian ever revealed by Picture (and arguably kicked off the 90s comedian speculator market increase).

That was at the least sufficient to spark my curiosity. I’m a comic book e book fan; and I’ve written just a few comics, and want to write extra. So I adopted Terrific Productions on Twitter, principally out of morbid curiosity. This did not move the scent check to start with, even when it was technically true that they had somehow wrangled the rights to a once-valuable comic book property, so there was some type of enterprise or authorized entity in place.

Their Twitter feed did not assist they appear any extra official. It was principally used as a hype machine with idiosyncratic grammar and prolonged threads that sound like hole gross sales pitches. In a manner, it was becoming with the 90s speculator comedian increase — they tweeted like a 13-year-old boy smashing motion figures collectively and calling it a narrative.

However in some unspecified time in the future, nevertheless, I assume I interacted with them, they usually DM’d me to speak about work. This is a bit of our dialog. You may inform I used to be skeptical from the beginning — however my author mind is all the time morbidly interested by any bizarre interactions, particularly when it guarantees fortunes and glory in change for re-telling a Rob Liefeld story from the 90s that wasn’t even good within the first place:

ME:  how does a retweet connect to royalties and page rates?  TERRIFIC PRODUCTIONS:
well imagine you drew youngblood  or wrote it  you get more sales when people pick up the boo  cause they saw some tweet from someone they admire like yourself  with 5000 followers - lets say they buy 500 copies  from 5000  and they do that 4 x  the artists will make more thousands  plus make them feel great so they draw or write better  ME:
So the page rates are dependent upon the artists participating in the promotional efforts?  TERRIFIC PRODUCTIONS:
of course
TERRIFIC PRODUCTIONS:  in this business u get some all royalty  but the books sell 1000  so it converts to mayeb 20-50 a page for all the crreatives  our plans pay higher than marvel  for the same sales  plus we have top characters  im not trying to sell u
just explaining why they want to promote  some have 60,000 before u get extra  ours is vastly better which is why we are such a treat  the big VIP fear see our newer artists gettingas much as they get with far fewer sales  they see that we promote actively  we also have  Terrific Record Group  so you might wish to make  asong with your story  we will promote you there also
ME:
thanks for the explainer!  TERRIFIC PRODUCTIONS:
we take the time to chat with commited pro artists  we just finsihed pencils on supreme 5  but we keep that under wraps so we can shock Marvel  ME:
Who wrote/drew that?  TERRIFIC PRODUCTIONS:
That requires an NDA we have some people who work for people upset that we are disrupting the status quo  we actually had a top guy try to poach or artists  we reveal that on soliciation  if you are talented apply  if you are not ready just retweet us - we will know you  and you get preference  at the big 2 u are unknown  sure an artist might know u but when did they try and get you a job

I would seen this type of shit earlier than. It is a ruse I would discovered after the nth time some equally sketchy dude reached out to my shitty highschool punk band, utilizing equally shitty grammar and questionable gross sales practices in change for just a bit free promo. So I re-accepted that my 10-year-old desires of re-writing a Rob Liefeld comedian had been nonetheless out of attain, and promptly forgot about this whole dialog.

Then just a few months again, Beth Elderkin at io9 revealed a huge, comprehensive expose on Andrew Rev of Terrific Productions (which I solely simply acquired round to studying). And it’s completely wild. It seems, some folks did take him up on affords after interactions just like the one I had. He wasn’t kidding in regards to the NDAs, both. Apparently Rev is a man with a protracted historical past of those sorts of scams — since at the least the 90s, when he purchased Comico, which revealed well-liked unbiased collection like Invoice Willingham’s The Elementals and Matt Wagner’s Grendel. The corporate had fallen out of business, and Rev — having no different comics expertise — swooped in to put it aside. Form of. As io9 reported:

[Note: Many of Rev’s responses, conducted over email, contained spelling and grammatical errors. We’ve chosen to present them as-is.]

“I used to be I will geared up to tackle the revival of Comico- I had no workers. Think about how I felt having paid their wage after which they handled me as a sucker!” Rev wrote. “With solely love of comics and an A in artwork appreciation in school I went forward to determine with out youtube or Wikipedia how comics had been made. My authentic purpose earlier than I arrived was for us to be passive buyers with 1/3 rd of Comico. However the president after he noticed he had no obligation personally for his workers wage went and handed me the keys and mentioned he was ‘going fishing’ that is how my e book on the comedian trade will Probably begin.” io9 was unable to contact the previous house owners of Comico for remark. 

Studies on the sale from the Comics Journal described Rev as a Chicago businessman and native of Hungary who labored within the unsolicited mail enterprise and had carried out consulting for Citibank. A 2017 courtroom case involving his ex-wife’s property confirmed he additionally tried to begin a software program enterprise in Vietnam round a decade prior however that he made no cash from it. In any other case, Rev is an enigma. He is believed to be 68 years previous and residing in California, has a small digital footprint, and his life between Comico and Terrific Manufacturing is essentially unknown. Rev refused to supply or verify with io9 any particulars on himself and famous that he expects “nothing private on this article.”

That is a helluva paragraph, proper? The story solely will get extra bonkers from there, particularly as Elderkin interviews artists and writers who did conform to work with Terrific Productions, regardless of the obvious crimson flags offered by some contractual clauses:

Terrific Manufacturing would maintain onto half of their web page charges till both 90% of individuals in the USA and Canada had been vaccinated towards the coronavirus, or 2,500 comedian e book retailers in these nations had been totally open once more.

[…]

Along with the covid-19 clause, Casas’ new contract included stipulations that put it just a few steps in need of an unique contract. Casas confirmed it banned him from accepting new work from different publishers as long as funds from Terrific Manufacturing weren’t over 45 days late, and he would have a three-year ban on working for any firms creating comparable characters to ones he’d made for Terrific Manufacturing. Whereas which may not apply to Casas, since he was making Supreme, Terrific Manufacturing has been engaged on a public area model of Thor and is at present soliciting new artists for it. It is unclear what the comedian entails, however inker Matthew Seaborne mentioned his concerned a love triangle between Thor, Hercules, and Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz.

It is a prolonged article, however it’s actually a morbidly fascinating one, winding via bizarre monetary offers and authorized holding methods like a kind of magic cup methods that individuals in motion pictures play in parks. There may be additionally, naturally, some bizarre X-rated comedian turns, and many contractual IP fuckery to behold. It is one thing.

Comics, Contracts, and Covid: Inside the Scandal at Terrific Production [Beth Elderkin / io9]

Picture by way of YouTube





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