DC’s Vertigo and WildStorm imprints have been through tumultuous times. While WildStorm closed its doors in 2010, Vertigo just saw another round of cancellations and new title launches. Time to take a closer look at the long-term performance of both publishing labels.
Vertigo was established in 1993 as an outlet for darker, more mature, partly creator-owned stories at DC Comics, as created by British writers like Neil Gaiman or Grant Morrison. The imprint has since published such signature titles as Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman, Grant Morrison’s Animal Man and The Invisibles, Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon’s Preacher, Warren Ellis and Darick Robertson’s Transmetropolitan, Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra’s Y: The Last Man and Bill Willingham’s Fables, among many others—all of which were first serialized as 20-page comic books before being collected in bookshelf editions.
Through the 2000s, though, Vertigo’s business model has been increasingly put to the test.