Don MacPherson and Randy Lander of the well-respected and long-running comic review site The Fourth Rail announced today that they are closing down the site. The pair posted a final “Two-in-One” farewell message on their site and issued the following press release:
Online comics critics Don MacPherson and Randy Lander will no longer update TheFourthRail.com, their comics-reviews website.
The Fourth Rail was launched in August 2001, and both reviews felt it was time for a change, opting to end regular reviews on the site.
“So why break up the band now? In a word: evolution,” Lander wrote in the pair’s farewell column.
While closing this chapter in their online endeavors, both critics will begin new ones. Lander is joining three friends in a new review site — ComicPants.com — and MacPherson is working on developing a new one with a new format as well.
“I’m guessing that for longtime readers, this won’t come as much of a surprise,” MacPherson wrote.
“The regularity of updates has gradually slowed over the past year or two, and of course, Randy ‘semi-retired’ from the site a few months ago. The fact of the matter is that my life and Randy’s life have changed radically in recent years — for the better.”
That means they’ve had less time to devote to the reviews format they’ve been following for years and less time to collaborate on joint reviews as well.
Since both decided to change their reviewing schedules and formats, they decided it was time to start fresh with new websites.
The Fourth Rail won’t disappear right away. MacPherson and Lander have decided to keep the site and complete archives up and running until the end of the year so readers can still access the material for a few months.
But don’t think of it as losing a review site … think of it as gaining two review sites. Don will be launching his own review site, while Randy is joining the wonderfully named Comic Pants review site. Comic Pants will also feature reviews from Dave Farabee from Ain’t It Cool News and retailers David Martindale and Nick Budd.
(Comic Pants. Seriously, that makes my whole day).