What would make comics mainstream?

I posted the following question over on Comic Book Resources‘ J. Torres “Open Your Mouth” forum to see if I get any nibbles, but the question is a good one for here too…and maybe it will finally prompt some action in the “Talk from the Darkside” section.

I was reading Brian Hibbs’ article on Newsarama, and someone posted that the reason Comics sales are so low is because comics are too expensive.

Now while it’s true that if I were only paying $2.00 CAN per issue (rather than the nearly $4.00 I pay now), I may double my consumption…there are a lot of books just on the bubble of my purchasing power…I don’t think that price is the barrier to getting new fans involved.

The last time I was in my favourite comic store (Comics and More in Toronto), I saw no fewer than three kids come in and plunk down $20.00 on Digi-Poke-Magic-Clix cards/figures/dice/whatever, usually accompanied by a parent who was forking over said green.

These kids all boldy walked up to the shopkeep, proclaimed their desire for their Digi-Poke-Magic-Clix product, plunked down their cashish, and walked out happy little goons.

All in the half hour period I was in the store…spending my paltry $25.00 which took me half an hour to agonize over whether or not I should be buying the Incredible Super Family #4529, or should I wait until next week when the deluxo Super Family #4529 with die-cut-lenticular-holo-foil cover comes in.

What say you? Comics price a barrier to greater sales? Is it the format?

What would get you buying more?

What would get the mainstream (i.e. you and your girlfriend/wife/boyfriend/husband/significant other) into comics?