It also follows an April scandal in which Marvel’s VP of Sales David Gabriel appeared to blame character diversity for the company’s recent sales decline. While Gabriel’s stance was music to the ears of a minority of comic book fandom, others rallied, blaming the company’s insistence on crossovers and stories that require the purchasing of multiple different books, and criticising Gabriel for seemingly using non-white characters as an easy scapegoat for the across-the-boards Marvel sales decline.
“During the discussion, retailers pointed out during the summit that the number of Marvel events, and the fact that they overlap, make it hard for fans to focus,” reported io9 at the time. “Right now, for instance, there’s Secret Empire, which will bleed over with Generations, which starts this summer. In the past two years alone, there have been at least 12 events and crossovers. Events, in particular, have become more of a chore than a reward.”
Gabriel later retracted his comments.