Mundo Vid was the name of a Mexican chain of comic bookstores owned by Grupo Editorial Vid, perhaps the most renowned comics publisher in the country in the 1990s and 2000s.

Grupo Editorial Vid was born in 1956 as Editorial Argumentos (EDAR), a name that lasted until 1979; from that point on, it was known as Vid. Its founders were Yolanda Vargas Dulché, a renowned soap opera scriptwriter, and her husband, Guillermo de la Parra. Initially, the publishing house made a name for itself with titles like Lágrimas, Risas y Amor, a series of romance comics based on many storylines authored by Vargas Dulché. In addition, Vid published comics like Memín Pinguín, a story based on the travails of an Afro-Mexican boy, a curiosity in a country lacking evidence of African descent in its past. Memín’s popularity, based on the character’s whimsical appeal, nurtured initial years of prosperity, eventually achieving the status of national icon. In due time, the founders ceded control of the company to their son Manelick de la Parra Vargas.

In 1985, Editorial Novaro, a local competitor with the license for DC Comics, went bankrupt. Vid recognized an opportunity and took over the rights, organizing MECyF (Modelismo Estético, Ciencia Ficción y Fantasía), the first modern comics convention in the country, held between 1995 and 1998. Basing its strategy on the appeal of superheroes like Batman and Superman, Vid managed to establish a name as a new, more contemporary kind of comics publisher. Thanks to its efforts, well-known figures of the US comics industry, like Dennis O’Neil, Dan Jurgens, Jon Bogdanove, Louise Simonson, and Todd McFarlane, visited Mexico and nurtured an appetite for a new brand of comics among Mexican nationals.

In 1994, Vid acquired the rights for Marvel Comics, effectively establishing itself as a Latin American publishing powerhouse, since it owned the rights for the two main US comics publishers. With these names in its catalogue, Vid aggressively marketed its production all over Latin America, effectively contributing to the demise of competitors in other latitudes. Though Vid’s initial run of Marvel Comics finished in 1995, by 1998 it had again acquired the rights, editing a variety of titles. The late 1990s and early 2000s mark a time of prosperity for Vid, with DC, Marvel, Image, and Dark Horse under its arm. Nowhere else in the Spanish-speaking world did a single publisher hold so much influence in production and distribution.

Happy times came to an end in 2005, when Televisa, the largest Spanish language media conglomerate in the world, took away the rights for Marvel. By 2009, Vid closed most of its stores. In 2011, it lost the rights to Marvel and ceased distribution of manga, focusing instead on traditional Mexican titles. By 2012, it was out of business. A former CEO, Miguel Ángel Lara del Valle, took over most of its interests—even some stores—and successfully launched Editorial Kamite, with an extensive catalogue of comics by Boom! and Image.

–Héctor Fernández L’Hoeste

 

Further Reading

  • Reyes, Lilia. “Lucha por sobrevivir el comic mexicano.” Reforma. June 14, 2010.
  • http://artes9.com/tag/grupo-editorial-vid/