Just had some rubbish news confirmed. Red Route has closed. Some of you probably have no idea who they are, but they’ve been very handy for me, working in a bookshop and trying to get an interesting range of comics was made very easy due to their existance. Last week I tried to contact them a few times to try and order some stuff and got a ‘number does not exist’ type message which gave me cause for concern, looks like it was justified.
Trying to move into book shops is a risky undertaking for comic publishers and distributors (as Pete Pavement of the sadly missed Slab O Concrete will tell you) and it could be that this is what has been Red Route’s downfall. With only a couple of places for bookshops to get a decent range of comics from, it could be that Titan books are the only thing you’ll see in the graphic novel sections, nothing terrible with Titan but a section that only has Batman, Superman, film tie-ins and a few UK reprints is not going to attract that much interest.
As you might’ve picked up from the last post, I’m a bit worried about the lack of variety and quality when it comes to books, films, etc. Sadly (I speak from bitter experience here) it’s easy to blame the places that create and sell these things but the biggest problem is the people who buy them. As customers we get what we deserve, and if that’s a bookshop full of Dan Brown or a cinema full of repetitive Blockbusters then maybe it’s time we started actively supporting quality and dismissing dross.