The Return of the McCann!

In case you weren’t around for the first go-round, check out the Q&A we did with Jim McCann last year, because we’re doing it again.

We’re gonna sit down with Marvel’s PR and Marketing guru Jim McCann, and go over as many of your questions as we have time for, so get asking.  Feel free to ask whatever you want, but keep the questions respectful.  And don’t bother asking questions about upcoming plot points, or unannounced creative changes, because he’s not going to answer that stuff.  But anything else is fair game.

You’ve got until this FRIDAY OCT. 31, at 12 NOON EST before we close down question posting, so get to it.

In the meantime, check out Jim’s message board over at Jinxworld.


  1. Why isn’t Paul Jenkins writing the new Sentry series? Don’t get me wrong I’m loving it so far, but why not put the creator of the character on the new book?

  2. Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

    Marvel has a huge presence on Twitter.  How do you feel about Twitter as an outlet for promoting comics?  Do you think writers and artists on Twitter lie and say they’re working just to keep their editors at bay?  

  3. With more and more people enjoying comic book based movies, do you think it is essential now, more than ever, that creative teams make their comics more accessible to new readers?

    Also, if Joe Q, Mark Millar, Brian Bendis and Jeph Loeb had a slumber party, what movie would they watch?  Who would win in a fight? (My money is on Millar)

  4. What’s one aspect of your job that suprises you the most? Is there some important element of marketing comics that the public has no appreciation or understanding of?

  5. Which book surprised you the most this year in terms of sales or overwhelming positive feedback?

  6. What is your favorite memory of the last year being in the business?

  7. If Goff Johns could come to Marvel what comic would you like to see him on? and what artest would you like to see him team up with? Also i know that this isn’t a comic book question but do of any writer,actor actress, or thing that can save SNL? 

  8. I’m a major X-Men fan,  which I know you are, too.   A common criticique of the X-books is that they seem to happen in a bubble, so that the characters don’t interact much with major Marvel Universe events like Civil War.  Would you agree with that statement and, if so, do you think it’s a problem?

  9. Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

    How do you feel about the "Mutant problem"?

  10. Google has an unofficial company mantra of "don’t be evil"

    Does Marvel have a similar slogan or phase?

  11. Marvel is doing a lot of adaptations of novels.  Are there any plans for big-name novelits to do OGNs in the future (not based on Marvel properties) and do you think that this will be key in getting people who primarily read prose to try comics?

  12. What steps are Marvel taking to sell their products to new consumers rather than the one’s you already have.  How Is Marvel expanding it’s consumer base (in regards to printed comic book sales, not licensing).


    Thank you for your time .


    the Tiki 

  13. Are Marvel paying for your longbox storage space?

  14. Is there any plans to do T.V. ads in the furture?  I think this is the best way to actully reach the kids.

  15. What’s up in the future? What’s got you excited? Is it an event? A title? A character? All of the above? Which ones?

    Can you tell I’m excited? =p

  16. What do you think of DC’s model that its using for Final Crisis (seperate tie-ins; main books do whatever)?  Could we see a similar set up for future events or does that counter act the company’s overall story telling vision?

  17. Can’t remember if this was covered in the last podcast or not so here goes: How did you get to your current position at Marvel? Not necessarily looking for tips here, more anectdotal.

    How does Marvel decide who and when to offer exclusives? What are you looking for when deciding to make the offer to a creator to go exclusive?

  18. First Question: Does Marvel have any future projects in the works in collabortation with DC?

    Second Question: Why has Marvel faulted in its recent attempts at publish a running weekly comic like DC’s 52, Countdown, etc??

  19. this is less a question and more a statement. i would just like to offer jim my deepest most heartfelt condolences on the loss of his dear beloved mockingbird. how’re you holding up buddy?

  20. FIRST QUESTION: what up and coming creators are you excited about at Marvel? What do you like about their work? What about those working outside of Marvel? SECOND QUESTION: Are there any plans to expand the MAX or Icon lines in the near future? Are there any new creators who will be given their own Icon book?         

  21. This totally could be way off, but don’t you think if the price of comics were cheaper, more people wpuld be inclined to buy some of the better recieved but lesser selling titles?

  22. Tell us about the free comics that Marvel talent and employees must get!  Do you all get free comics every week?  Do you ship out free stuff to the creators?  I’m just curious about the free stuff that the average Mavel creator must get.

  23. Let me start by saying that I fully believe that you all at Marvel, in addition to wanting to make money, want to turn out good comics.  Here is my question: Why do you continue to reward slow/irresponsible/late artists with work [high profile work] when there are so many talented guys trying to break in to the business, or already working the business who, I believe, given the chance could build up the same following?

    An example, why continue to put someone like Hitch, McNiven, or Cho on a book dooming it to lateness, when you could put someone lesser known, but equally talented on the book and get a better work ethic, get the book out on time, and not upset the fans?

  24. If I’m misinformed on any of what I say here, please use the oppurtunity to straighten me out.

    My understanding of ‘Secret Invasion’ is that Bendis initially planned the story to run through the Avengers titles (both New and Mighty) concurrently.  Told in this format, a story of this magnitude would have had the potential to be remembered right up there with the ‘Coming of Galactus’ storyline in Lee/Kirby’s Fantastic Four, or the ‘Dark Phoenix Saga’ from Claremont/Byrne’s Uncanny X-men.  But rather than being allowed to live in that contained fashion the powers-that-be at Marvel decided to turn it into an enormous company-wide event, that (in my opinion) sort of spiraled out of control.  Now, my point isn’t so much to pontificate about my opinion of what ‘Secret Invasion’ became, but rather to ask of you, do you think this is the future of Marvel?  Every time a writer comes up with a cool idea, are you going to kind of take it away from them, and turn it into a huge event?  Because that’s kind of what the last couple of events (World War Hulk, and Secret Invasion) seem like to me.  They were stories that may have been better served to live inside of their own title, rather than being soupled up beyond the point where they’re really cohesive.  I guess my point is that if the Galactus, or the Dark Phoenix stories were told today, they wouldn’t be allowed to happen organically, but would be turned into huge corporate events, and ultimately wouldn’t have the same impact.

  25. Can Marvel do anything to leverage the HUGE movie & DVD audiences and let those millions of people specifically know that comics exists and that they can be bought in comic shops?

     For instance, I bought the iron Man DVD and there was no mention in the packaging that there is an Iron Man comic or that it can be bouught in comics shops.  There were many million of these DVDs shipped the first week it came out vs. 60-70k of the comic that sell each month, this gives you exposure to an audience for the comic that is probably 10x the comics audience that having a simple insert sheet in the DVD box telling about Marvel comics that have been movies an having the comics shop locator phone # & web-site.

  26. Why does Marvel have so few creator owned books? I mean this not as in your a big company, shame on you for hurting the artist. More so, where is your Vertigo? I know Powers, Criminal and a few other titles exist but does Marvel have little interest in such projects or what? 


  27. Can someone a Marvel please kill The Sentry?? Perhaps he could die of dehydration due to his endless crying fits.

  28. Will this year’s What If’s (which you are co-writing the House of M Special, congrats by the way) be collected in TPB form?

     Who would write the best Dazzler series in your opinion?

  29. Who do you think has been the top creative team this year in both DC and Marvel or who’s the best writer, in your opinion, and the best artist out there?

  30. I see on your Twitter that you’ve been doing some writing of your own. Whatcha writing?  Who are you pitching to? What’s the end to Secret Invasion #8? Do you have a writing schedule?  Can you answer two out of three of the previous questions?


  31. You are trapped on a desert island. What 3 graphic novels do you have with you, what 3 music albums do you have?

  32. I’m a guy who loves comics so much and I am also majoring into marketing and I would Love to combine both so that I end up doing what I love and loooking as that this guy is a guru maybe he can give me pointers for me to do very well.

  33. With the current rise in the price of paper should I sell my comics to a recycling plant or is the ink that Marvel uses makes those too toxic for recycling and I should just sell them as is?

  34. I’m Ed Brubaker’s biggest fan ever. Will you ask him to adopt me? 😉

     For a more serious question. Should I hope for any Ed Brubaker book announcements in the (relatively near) future?

  35. Can we see Marvel’s classic GI Joe run reprinted in trades again soon? Also, any chance we could see reprints of Marvel UK’s version of GI Joe, Action Force, here in the states? What I’ve read of Action Force Monthly (vol. 2) was amazing, and very hard to find the back issues for.

    What can I look forward to in the coming months from the Omnibus line?

    In a recent Cup O’ Joe, Joe Q said we can expect more Golden/Atlas age Captain America reprints. How can we expect to see them, as trades, Masterworks, an Omnibus, etc?  Also, can you give us a ballpark time table for their release?

    I think with all the Zombies running around, and with your recent Haunt of Horror mini under the Max inprint, you guys know there is a market for horror books right now. Any thoughts on bringing back Tomb of Dracula? I think it would do very well in the Max line with a darker, edgier tone and would really appeal to new readers as well as fans of the original, like myself.

  36. This year has seen much build-up to Secret Invasion followed by eight months of the series crossing over the Marvel Universe, affecting a lot of books.  In 2007, we had two months dealing with the tail end of Civil War and five months of World War Hulk.  Some people have been feeling "event fatigue given more than half of a given year is wrapped in one "event" or the other.  Is there any change readers could see an elongated period of time, perhaps eight months or a year, where Marvel isn’t in the midst of or setting up some big event?   If not, is it concievable in the near future for Ed Brubaker or Jason Aaron to be behind an "event" book in the near future?

  37. Now that Marvel has gone digital, do you guys really think this is the future of comics? I mean it’s great know fantastic writers like Jason Aaron are going to do be doing original material for this new venture. But does Marvel in general think that this will ultimately be the futue of comics?

  38. If you had to describe DC Comics using one of these two statements, which would you say was more accurate:

     Best company in comics, or best company ever?

  39. (I love Marvel Comics)

  40. Firestar. Angelica Jones. For real, where is she. And not this retired BS. Love the unlitmate one, but not the same.

  41. Loved last year’s interview, thanks for coming on again Jim!


    It seems pretty obvious that Secret Invasion was published with new readers in mind; identifying characters every issue with name logos, backup materials in issue #1 telling you what else to read, etc. With that in mind, what was Marvel’s goal for the "Embrace Change" TV commercial that aired during the minor league baseball game a couple months ago? I never would have heard about it if I didn’t see the Marvel press release because I (and everyone I know) don’t watch minor league baseball on TV. Were you hoping to attract new, young readers? Was it done so you could tell your publisher, creditors, and shareholders, "Look! We advertise comics on TV!" Or was it done for some other reason? Thanks.

  42. Has the movies and cartoon made your job easier?

  43. When will there be a Spider-Man cartoon that will last? There are so many cartoons based on so many titles it’s just too confusing…

    And why doesn’t Logan donates his super blood to sick people? With all that shanking people with the claws and retracting them still bloody he probably caught several things – why not use his blood for the benefit ot mankind in the Marvel universe? 

  44. Thanks for the questions all!