Some significant, looks-like-it-can-only-be-positive news from last week: IDW bought Top Shelf. I'm not going to bust into some deep analysis of this as a business move, and how it will affect each company, because I don't know the first thing about that. What I do know is IDW are a larger publisher, who hold a lot of licences (TMNT, Star Trek, My Little Pony and more) alongside artists editions and original work like Locke and Key, and Top Shelf can only be bolstered to have that kind of financial support and heft behind them. From the press release, it sounds like Top Shelf will be left to continue as it is, operating under its own name and working as a sort of 'boutique' arm of IDW. 'IDW is committed to preserving and growing the Top Shelf brand, which we’ve long admired. Chris and his team have built a great working relationship with creators, fans, and retailers alike, and IDW will work diligently to expand Top Shelf’s publishing capabilities and market reach while further developing those relationship,' said IDW president, Greg Goldstein.
Top Shelf have been doing a great job over the years with their books, in terms of both the range of their output and production; there's a real care taken in treatment and presentation. Founded in 1997 Some of the works they've published include March by Congressman John Lewis and Nate Powell, Lucille by Ludovic Debuerme, Spiral-Bound by Aaron Renier, Night Animals by Brecht Evens, August Moon by Diana Thung, Essex Country by Jeff Lemire, Alan Moore's The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, and many many more. Top Shelf’s headquarters will remain in Marietta, GA. Here's Top Shelf publisher and co-founder Chris Staros on the news: 'Top Shelf and IDW complement each other perfectly. We both started around the same time, and when I would watch IDW over the years, as a fellow publisher, I’d see them making smart move after smart move. Now I’m extremely excited to combine their talents and resources with Top Shelf’s award-winning literary approach to comics.' Sounds like both parties understand one another about what they can each bring to the table; excited to see how this manifests itself into a potentially stronger version of Top Shelf.