To my kingdom of fellow nerds, geeks, obsessives, dorks, fanatics, and the rest: for the next few minutes, put down your comics and attend to my message. Lay aside your action figures, your 20 sided die, and your trading cards. Put away your ironically novel tee shirts, close the other firefox window you have open to a message board, and for the sake of all that is holy, turn off those DVDs containing, at most, three episodes of your favorite cartoon. For it is only in our unity that we will find satisfaction and only in your attention to my words that we will reach unity.
I promise, once we topple The Man, you can go back to your collectables.
First the set up: A friend of mine (we’ll call her SpabsOSteel) lent me three Batman Beyond DVDs, a kind gesture among nerdish friends, to be sure (especially since I never returned the last BBDVD she let me “borrow”). Alas, though, these were not full seasons as I had expected. Each disk contained only 70 minutes of cartoon, or three episodes a piece. I weep openly thinking about it.
Now, often, my favorite type of DVD is the television compilation, especially when it’s of a show as excellent as Batman Beyond, and especially when it’s of a show that I never watched much when it was actually on TV. WB can kiss my ass to begin with because they refuse to keep a steady schedule, but instead shuffle around good ‘toons (ex. Animaniacs) with The Adventures of Sitty MacPoopSweats and his Band of Action Figures Available at a Toy Store Near You. But that’s a post for another day.
Here’s the thing with DVDs. The bigwigs have realized that they can make a lot of money by releasing seasons to DVD, but they can make even MORE by first releasing individual episodes, or three episode series. Do you know why? Because, my brothers, WE KEEP BUYING THEM. We keep folding. We give in to their strategy of sucking every last penny out of a product. And why sell the cow when your target market is happily running up their credit card bills on thimble-fulls of milk? Look at the Amazon.com reviews for these things. Every one of them has some annoyed fan saying “While I was willingly shelling out $16 for this three-show disk, all I could think about was that WB needs to release the entire season!”
I don’t blame these individual reviewers, and I certainly don’t blame Spabs. So far, there has been no organized effort to fight against this nickel and diming. One sole voice is always important in a democracy, but this isn’t democracy, this is capitalism at its finest/worst. So I suggest we capitalize right back at ‘em. DVD sales send a message – look what it did for the Family Guy. I say we stop buying the three-episode minnows and instead hold out for the full season disks. Change what is economically sensible for the corporate suits to sell, and I promise your Superman Social, your Evening With Samurai Jack, your Freakazoid Fete, and especially your Avatar Bender (get it?) will be longer than 70 minutes in no time.
PS – Upon further consideration, I would buy the Shitty MacPoopSweats action figure.
1 year ago