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10. "March" Is A Mainstream Media Success
Given the honored place that Civil Rights pioneer Congressman John Lewis holds, not just in the media but in American culture at large, and the fact that his comics memoir was published to time with the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington, it should come as no surprise that Top Shelf Productions' "March, Book One" made a splash outside of comics. But even in an era where major comics news regularly breaks through to major media outlets, the volume by Lewis, co-author Andrew Aydin and artist Nate Powell had an exceptional year.
Aided by Lewis' skills as a powerful speaker for his ideals and about his life, "March" made a splash everywhere, from Comic-Con to Book Expo America and from "The Colbert Report" to "The Rachel Maddow Show." The resultant sales Top Shelf reported after each TV appearance Lewis and his collaborators made likely mean that scores of Americans read their first comic in years (if not ever) thanks to "March," and it's hard to imagine a better steward for the medium than that. Meanwhile, Top Shelf deserves kudos not just for putting such a project together but also for finding new ways to market the book, including a digital package which came with the iconic 1957 comic "Martin Luther King and the Montgomery Story" and distributing free digital copies of the book to every member of Congress.