MYSPACING COMICS: Top Cow Makes Waves at the Polls

Thu, January 31st, 2008 at 12:00am PST

Comic Books
CBR News Team, Editor

Top Cow's interactive Pilot Season initiative attracted thousands of friends
Over the past six months, CBR News has been tracking trends and "friends" on MySpace.com – the nation's most trafficked website – as they relate to the comic book industry, most specifically with publishers and creators. In our ongoing effort to deliver to the world the premier online comics magazine, this monthly feature endeavors to share our findings, chat with newsmakers and explore profile movement – be it up, down or sideways.

Not yet the top dog, Top Cow is generating plenty of interest these days, to the tune of 14,542 friends, a phenomenon fueled by its pet pilot project – Pilot Season. With voting now closed, fans were invited to vote online for their favorite "pilot issue" featuring a Top Cow character currently without his or her own series. With final results coming on February 12, the top two winners will be greenlit for new series that will debut later this year.

Filip Sablik, Top Cow's Publisher, told CBR News, "I've been a big proponent of using social networking and other Web 2.0 vehicles to promote Top Cow and our properties to potential fans since I came on board. MySpace has been really rewarding on many levels with the real feather in our cap being the 4.1 million plus votes we received during the Pilot Season promotion. I've recently started a weekly blog on our MySpace page and we're continuing to look at ways to add new content and interactivity to our MySpace page in 2008."

Top Cow founder Marc Silvestri has also found his way to MySpace of late.

Another notable publisher – and an admitted oversight in past installments of MYSPACING COMICS– is American Mule Entertainment, home of the official "Public Enemy" comic book series. American Mule's impressive 16,719 friends, places the publisher fourth overall

But in other chart changing news amongst the publishers, Image Comics has pushed past Michael Turner's Aspen Comicsand now holds the eleventh spot with 4,630 friends. Image is now looking up at Devil's Due in effort to crack the Top 10.

Marc Silvestri has made his MySpace presence be known
Still sitting at the head of the class is Dark Horse, who added an incredible 3,148 friends in January. The home of "Hellboy" and Joss Whedon's "Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8" has become the first comic publisher to surpass 50,000 friends with a whopping50,519 currently on board.

DC Comics, who welcomed 835 friends to its profile, slipped by its sister DC Nation page and now sits fifth with 16,227. With the two profiles combined, the total leaps to 32,231, which would place the publisher third behind Dark Horse and Marvel (42,513). But with DC split between two profiles, manga heavyweight TOKYOPOP takes third with 18,956 friends.

MYSPACING COMICS is also keeping an eye on Optimum Wound Comics. The web comics publisher currently boasts an enormous 87,651 friends, which means the minute Optimum Wound publishes a printed comic, they become the #1 comics publisher on MySpace. The Vancouver-based operation plans to offer a printed version of Danijel Zezelj's "Rex" this spring, so watch out. "Rex" can be read online here.

On the creator side, MYSPACING COMICS darling Tara McPherson must have hosted an awesome New Year's Eve bash as she has welcomed more than 3,000 (3,148) adds since January 1 and now has 27,970 friends.

However, thanks to a CBR forum post by Silent Devil head Christian Beranek, MYSPACING COMICS has a new reigning champ. Siya, whose About Me section reads "full time, Illustrator, Comic Book Artist, Web Developer, designer, [and] most recently, concept artist for video games," and her 46,664 friends unseat McPherson for the top spot. A 27-year-old from Seattle, Washington, Siya's first published work in comics was in Zenescope's "Grimm Fairy Tales Annual."

Indie artist Siya is on MySpace more popular than any comics creator we've found
It should be noted here that if Siya was a print publisher, her popularity would rank her #2 behind Dark Horse and ahead of Marvel. MYSPACING COMICS will be putting out a call to have Siya join us here in next month's feature.

Another big mover and shaker – and this likely comes as no surprise as he as a wily veteran when it comes to maximizing new mediums – is Stan Lee. The man behind Spider-Man, Fantastic Four and the X-Men added the second-most friends this month amongst creators with an additional 810 The relative newcomer to MySpace now has 4,794 friends.

MySpace Comic Books, the site's official comic book portal that spotlights creators, new projects and a news feed from CBR, currently boasts 157,137 friends.

As one can guess, when tracking a site as massive as MySpace, many profiles are going to be missed. Reader feedback not only helps CBR News track the many thousands of comics-related profiles on MySpace, but also can cause quite the shake up in the rankings as is the case this week. As this feature continues to expand, we ask that readers help creators and publishers make themselves known to us so that we can create more comprehensive rankings in the future.

TOP PUBLISHERS (Total friends, monthly shift)

1. Dark Horse: 50,519 (+3,148)

2. Marvel Comics 42,513 (+1,430)

3. TOKYOPOP 18,956 (+214)

4. American Mule Entertainment: 16,719 friends (NPR)

5. DC Comics: 16,227 (+835)

6. DC Nation: 16,004 (-107)

7. Top Cow: 14,542 (+426)

8. Virgin Comics: 13,845 (+690)

9. Evil Ink Comics: 10,745 (+256)

10. Devil's Due: 6,018 (+114)

TOP CREATORS (Total friends, monthly shift)

1. Siya: 46,664 (NPR)

2. Tara McPherson: 27,970 (+1,357)

3. Warren Ellis: 20,312 (+468)

4. Jim Lee: 18,983 (+783)

5. Brian K. Vaughan: 16,473 (+266)

6. Roman Dirge: 15,071 (+312)

7. Brian Michael Bendis: 13,820 (+296)

8. Brad Meltzer: 11,002 (+182)

9. Steve Niles: 10,812 (+163)

10. Geoff Johns: 9,977 (+148)

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