BEST BETS: "Jessica Jones," "Big Trouble/Escape from New York" & More October 2016 Highlights
Nobrow Press co-founder Sam Arthur once described the company’s mission as “to publish books that deserved to be printed — and by that I mean they needed to exist as tactile objects that people [can] collect and cherish.” This has been borne out over the years as Nobrow established itself as a publisher that paid painstaking attention to the production process.
Given that, it’s not surprising that it took Nobrow seven years to go digital, and when it did, it came up with a digital solution that addresses the physical aspects of its comics.
ComiXology has announced the 25 bestselling comiXology Submit titles of 2014.
Launched in 2013, the self-publishing portal allows independent creators to upload their comics and graphic novels for sale worldwide, with profits split evenly between comiXology and the creator.
Although comiXology doesn’t provide any details about number of downloads, the list still makes for interesting reading, as it’s a mix of titles you might expect — Leaving Megalopolis by Gail Simone and Jim Calafiore, Testament by Douglas Rushkoff & Co. — and some that don’t have that level of creator name recognition, like Benjamin Rivers’ Snow and Beto Skubs and Rafael de Latorre’s Fade Out: Painless Suicide.
While Leaving Megalopolis and Testament: Omnibus top the chart, Joe Benitez’s Lady Mechanika claims three spots. It’s also an incredibly diverse list, where the mystery Watson and Holmes is found alongside the “world’s sexiest anthology” Smut Peddler, and the gay superhero title The Pride is nestled between the Western Moth City Preludes: The Reservoir and the pirate adventure Annie Bonnie.
The best superheroes aren’t those who are slick and perfectly formed. They’re the ones with some humanity and nuance. And the digital series Infinite Wonders delivers that in style, story and substance, particularly with the inkwash artwork of Nick Cagnetti.
Infinite Wonders, written by Tristen Bagnall, follows a young man name Nolan Brooks who sets out to become, in his words, a “superguy” after being bombarded by something called Infinite Energy. There are no gauntlets here, but this hero — dubbed Infinite — faces some real-world problems as he enters this new line of work. It’s a story about a person’s first day on the job, when the job happens to be that of superhero.
Archie Comics has partnered with Humble to launch the first Archie Comics Humble Bundle, featuring more than a dozen digital titles, including The Death of Archie, Afterlife With Archie and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.
Humble allows you to name your price for DRM-free downloads, with a portion going to charity, in this case the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund and The Hero Initiative.
U.K. publisher Rebellion has an Android app selling 2000 AD, Judge Dredd Megazine and its large selection of classic graphic novels. Signing up for a digital 2000 AD subscription also unlocks access to three months of back issues so readers can get caught up.
According to the publisher, 2000 AD and the Meg will be available for purchase day-and-date in-app and as DRM-free downloads in either PDF or CBZ format. The new Android app complements Rebellion’s existing iOS app, noteworthy for being one of the few not run through leading digital comics distributor comiXology.
To celebrate the launch of the 2000 AD app for Android, Rebellion shared with ROBOT 6 Greg Staples’ unreleased cover to 2000 AD prog 1915, featuring the return of Judge Death in “Dark Justice” by John Wagner and Staples. One of the first issues to debut inside the new Android app, prog 1915 goes on sale in-app on Feb. 1.
The 2000 AD app for Android is available now on Google Play.
Atomic Robo, the long-running adventure comic by Brian Clevinger and Scott Wegener, is making the move to the web.
The creators announced they allowed their contract expire with Red 5, where the comic debuted in 2007, and will soon switch to a digital-first model, serializing Atomic Robo online before releasing a print collection.
First, however, they’ll upload to their website seven years’ worth of comics, complete with creator commentary and process drawings — more than 1,000 pages in all. The first volume, Atomic Robo and the Fightin’ Scientists of Tesladyne, will be released online in full on Wednesday. Afterward, a new issue will be release each Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Valiant Entertainment has partnered with ComicsFix to offer select titles through the subscription-based digital comics service.
For $9.95 a month, ComicsFix offers access on iPad, iPhone, Android devices, laptops and desktops to a digital library of comics. Valiant and Dynamite Entertainment are the largest publishers involved to date.
A romantic comedy by Jamie S. Rich and Megan Levens, the Oni Press graphic novel is being serialized digitally in six weekly chapters, concluding on Feb. 10, before being collected in print form in April. Each installment costs $1.99.
As part of ROBOT 6’s sixth anniversary celebration, creator Kevin Colden shared with us an exclusive preview for Antioch, which will be released digitally in February through Colden and Miss Lasko-Gross’ Dyclops imprint. According to Colden:
Antioch is a serialized futuristic-historical-adventure-mystery-thriller spanning three different time periods; a story about things of a philosophical nature written and drawn by Kevin Colden (The Crow, I Rule the Night, Fishtown). Issue 1 is available now in limited release as a black-and-white <meta>physical periodical printed on glorious newsprint and will be available February 1, 2015, in full toxic color on digital platforms. Issue #2 will follow in short or long order. For folks looking for the printed platform, print copies of Antioch will be available next week at Bergen Street Comics.
The hours are ticking down not just on 2014, but also on Dark Horse’s Star Wars license. However, before the publisher says goodbye to a galaxy far, far away, it’s having one epic final sale, dubbed the “Star Wars Farewell Megabundle.”
How epic? How about digital versions of every Star Wars comic published by Dark Horse over the past two decades, for $300? That amounts to about 50 percent off the entire digital library. That’s everything from 1991’s Star Wars: Dark Empire to 2014’s The Star Wars, and everything in between – Legacy, The Clone Wars, The Old Republic. All of them.
If you’re still searching for a gift for a Marvel fan on your shopping list, you might keep this in mind: The publisher is offering a two-month subscription to its massive digital archive for the price of one.
Through Jan. 4, new and returning subscribers can purchase two months of Marvel Unlimited for $9.99, gaining access to more than 15,000 classic and newer comics, dating from the Golden Age to about six months ago. In October, the publisher added some of its Season One graphic novels to the lineup.
Marvel Unlimited can be accessed on the web and through the Marvel Unlimited app on iPhone, iPad and select Android devices.
For full details, visit the Marvel Unlimited website; to take advantage of the limited offer, use the promo code “Unwrap.”
Just in time for Christmas, Dynamite Entertainment has teamed with Humble for the (deep breath) “Humble Dynamite Mega Holiday Bundle.”
Although by now most people know how Humble works — you can purchase DRM-free downloads for as little as a penny, with a portion going to charity — this one is a little different: Each day of the sale, you can get a free issue from the Dynamite Bundle.
ComiXology is back this year with its own take on an Advent calendar, the third annual “12 Days of Free Comics.”
Each day through Dec. 22, the company will offer a digital comic for free, beginning today with The Wake #1 by Scott Snyder and Sean Murphy (it may be a holiday tradition for Snyder as well, as last year’s event kicked off with Batman #13).
What’s more, each comic can be gifted to friends, family members or co-workers. However, each day’s selection is available for download only until 11 p.m. ET (a slight change from last year, when you had 24 hours).
“It’s been an outstanding year for us at comiXology, and we want every comic fan to help us celebrate with our third annual 12 Days of Free Comics,” CEO David Steinberger said in a statement. “It’s you, the comics fan, that push us every day to create an even brighter future for comics, graphic novels and manga worldwide. These comics are for you!”
Priya’s Shakti is the first comic released in India to use augmented reality, a digital effect that animates some of the panels when they are viewed with a smart phone.
That’s impressive, but it’s not the most remarkable thing about the comic. What sets Priya’s Shakti apart is the subject matter: It’s a story about rape. In the comic, a rape survivor and the goddess Parvati travel around the country and the world, fighting sexual violence and the attitudes that underlie it.
Producer and writer Ram Devineni and artist Dan Goldman (Red Light Properties) created the comic, which has been awarded a 2014 Tribeca Film Institute New Media Fund grant, and they partnered with the NGO Apne Aap Women Worldwide, which works for social and policy changes to improve the standing of women throughout the world, to help get it into as many hands as possible.
DC Entertainment is making its monthly titles available for download on iVerse Media’s ComicsPlus App, with the publisher’s back catalog set to be added in the coming weeks.
The move comes as the digital distributor releases ComicsPlus 8.0 for iOS 8, which features the new uView enhanced reading experience, graphic novel rentals with offline reading, improved search capabilities, ePub, PDF, CBR and CBZ file support, an in-app parental controls.
“We want to be wherever comic fans are building their libraries and this new partnership with iVerse Media brings bestselling DC Entertainment titles from DC Comics and Vertigo to a broad, new digital audience,” Derek Maddalena, DC’s senior vice president of sales and business development, said in a statement. “The fantastic new features in the ComicsPlus app, paired with our iconic characters like Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman, deliver a great digital reading experience.”
Read iVerse’s ComicsPlus 8.0 press release below: