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Author Topic: Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"  (Read 219 times)

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Offline bminor

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Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"
« on: November 28, 2018, 01:51:41 PM »
Graphic taken from The Secret History of Marvel Comics, published 2013

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Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"
« on: November 28, 2018, 01:51:41 PM »

Offline Yoc

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Re: Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2018, 04:36:41 PM »
Thanks B, that would be Doc V and Bell's book. 
I've got it here to read but haven't gotten beyond a quick browse so far.

Offline Poztron

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Re: Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"
« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2018, 11:44:31 PM »
Graphic taken from The Secret History of Marvel Comics, published 2013

Perhaps the Secret History reveals it all, but judging from this absolute tangle of companies, it is hard to imagine that Martin Goodman made things so complicated for any purpose other than scamming $$. I mean, is there an innocent explanation for presiding over what looks like a hundred discreet business entities?

Offline SuperScrounge

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Re: Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"
« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2018, 11:57:34 PM »
Not sure if it's innocent, but apparently if one "publishing company" gets sued all of the company's assets are at risk so multiple companies were a way to limit potential money lost in a lawsuit, if I recall correctly.

Offline bminor

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Re: Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"
« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2018, 05:45:40 AM »
I just read the part early in the book when Joe Simon discovered that Martin was disbursing the profits from sales of of Captain America to pay for other expenses not related to that book. I think he became aware of some shady accounting procedures. So that Simon and Kirby were being cheated out of the profits of their creation.

I have read much of the book. It really leaves the reader feeling that Martin was not a honorable person when it came to treating other people in his employ with respect and honor.

If you want to read a book that will make you feel disgusted about how comic books were created, and how the creators, writers, artists, inkers, etc are treated by the owners, this book is for you.

In short, Martin Goodman would do anything he could to make a a buck.


Offline Yoc

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Re: Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"
« Reply #5 on: November 29, 2018, 08:23:37 AM »
I believe SS was correct about why a publisher would want to create such a web of companies. 
And Goodman was far from the only one with multiple companies
If one fails or is sued, just use another one and continue as normal.

-Yoc

Offline darkmark

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Re: Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"
« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2018, 08:20:56 PM »
True.  Archie also published under multiple company names.

Offline SuperScrounge

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Re: Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"
« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2018, 09:09:20 PM »
I have read much of the book. It really leaves the reader feeling that Martin was not a honorable person when it came to treating other people in his employ with respect and honor.

How many comics publishers could be considered honorable? There are quite a few stories about the weasels who ran comics, but very few about good guys who ran comics.

Offline Poztron

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Re: Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"
« Reply #8 on: December 06, 2018, 11:21:57 PM »
I have read much of the book. It really leaves the reader feeling that Martin was not a honorable person when it came to treating other people in his employ with respect and honor.

How many comics publishers could be considered honorable? There are quite a few stories about the weasels who ran comics, but very few about good guys who ran comics.

Though I haven't read in-depth about Bill Gaines' EC comics publishing empire, I've gotten the impression that, compared to most comics publishers, he was fairly benign in a paternalistic way. True, he didn't want to cede 51% control of Mad Magazine to Harvey Kurtzman, and I suspect (but do not know for sure) that EC writers and artists never got royalties for the various reprints of their work in Ballantine paperbacks, Mad anthologies, or the Russ Cochran EC reprints.

OTOH, he certainly seemed to display a certain loyalty to long-time Mad Magazine artists, and apparently paid them well enough for them to have MAD as their main venue for decades. (I'm thinking of Dave Berg, George Woodbridge, Mort Drucker, and other middling stalwarts.) I know that Don Martin had his beefs with Gaines' use of his work, so I could be off-base with my impressions.

Offline OtherEric

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Re: Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"
« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2018, 07:51:12 PM »
I suspect (but do not know for sure) that EC writers and artists never got royalties for the various reprints of their work in Ballantine paperbacks, Mad anthologies, or the Russ Cochran EC reprints.

As I understand it... and my understanding may be wrong... the creators never got contracted royalties when their work was reprinted.  But, if they were on good terms with Gaines, they got one-time gift payments when the work was reprinted, over and over again.  A rather strong carrot and stick arrangement, if you fell out with Gaines you stopped getting the payments for your old work.

Like I said, I'm not 100% clear on this.  If anybody can elaborate or find a quote on that (I read it years and years ago) I would love to see it.

Offline SuperScrounge

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Re: Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"
« Reply #10 on: December 07, 2018, 11:12:07 PM »
Well there is a story about Gaines going back on a deal with the guy who sold him the idea for doing horror comics. Which, if true, doesn't make Gaines look so nice.

On the other side, there is a story of Gaines sending Ghastly Graham Ingles a royalty check and Ingles sent it back* and Gaines told him that if he didn't take the check it would ruin Gaines' bookkeeping. ;-)

* He sent the check back because Ingles was afraid people would wonder where the money came from and learn of his horror comics past.

IIRC the guy who ran Magazine Enterprises (Vincent Sullivan?) was considered to be a good guy.

Offline markwood007788

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Re: Graphic of Martin Goodmans "Publishing Companies"
« Reply #11 on: December 11, 2018, 06:20:19 PM »
Not certain if it's blameless, but rather clearly whether one "distributing organization" gets sued the majority of the organization's advantages are in danger so numerous organizations were an approach to constrain potential cash lost in a claim, in the event that I review effectively.