The Australian Dollar is now worth $1.07 against the American Greenback - a record high since our Dollar was first floated back in the early 1980s. Have a look at the US cover price of US comic books at our local (Australian) newsagents: DC Comics are listed as $2.99 each, with Marvel Comics slightly higher. So, if the Aussie Dollar is relatively stronger against the US Dollar, surely that means that US comics should retail for a lesser amount on our stands? But most US comics are retailing at A$6 or more each at our Newsagents. (I'm uncertain if Australian comic shops are reflecting this change in the exchange rate, as I rarely go into comic stores. Someone please let me know....) Quite simply, someone is ripping off Australian Fans of US comic books, and that just isn't right.
On the upside, it may explain why there are new Australian publishers contemplating entering the Australian marketplace again - with the overinflated prices of Overseas material, local publishers are now able to undercut (from a price point of view at least) the DC and Marvel product. So, am I complaining or not? I would dearly love to see more Australian comics on the newsagents' stands, but I also don't like to see Australians being ripped off. And someone is ripping the Australian US Comic Book Fan off!
Comicoz is Nat Karmichael's publishing imprint. Nat is committed to preserving a permanent collection of Australian comic and comic strips. He feels that there is a need to recognise comics' contribution to and depiction of Australian culture.
Since 2011, Nat has self-published over twelve comic-related books and was Publisher-Editor of
Oi Oi Oi! -- the last series of nationally-distributed comic books of original stories to appear on Australian newsstands. He is a member of the Australian Cartoonists Association and edited the Association's journal Inkspot for 14 issues from late 2015. For numerous years he has been the Lead Judge in the Ledger of Honour Awards for the Comic Arts Awards of Australia (formerly the Ledgers). These days Nat dreams of retiring from his occupation as a Clinical Nurse in the Psychiatric Emergency Centre in Queensland's largest public hospital, so that he can spend more time with his long-suffering wife and their six children and fourteen grandchildren. And perhaps publish some more comic-related books.
Comicoz acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay respects to elders, past, present, and emerging, and extend that respect to all First Nations peoples.
Australian Publications since 1976:
1 x Poster
19 x comics (one a co-production with Cyclone Comics in 1988/9, one a co-production with Cowtown Comics in 2022)
2 x Paperback books
10 x Hardcover books