Digital Flash Collections at ComiXology and Google Play
DC has added dozens of digital collections to ComiXology and Google Play, including four Flash books:
- Move Forward
- Rogues Revolution
- Flash: Rebirth
In the case of ComiXology it’s not a big change, since the individual issues have been online since 2011 (along with a much, much deeper catalog). It just makes it a little easier to buy a complete story, and it looks like it’s slightly cheaper to buy the collection than the individual issues.
In the case of Google Play, it opens the audience up to Android tablet owners who don’t have a dedicated comic book app such as ComiXology or DC’s branded ComiXology app.
DC has a much fuller catalog in individual issues on ComiXology, as well as collections on the Kindle, iBooks and Nook stores. And apparently I missed the fact that individual issues are also available on those platforms as well, and have been since last November.
It’s not clear how much of the back catalog can be found on these sites. I can’t see the iBooks store at all, and Amazon isn’t set up to make it easy to browse a long series. The Nook store does let me look at a series, but only seems to have backissues that were released since early 2013. No sign of the Brightest Day Flash issues, though they have the collections of Dastardly Death… and Road to Flashpoint, and the Wally West issues start at #84 and have a lot of gaps. I suspect if I went back over my weekly release posts, I’d find those gaps are where DC skipped over issues that had already been posted on ComiXology. I’ve spot-checked a few issues I saw (and didn’t see) on the Nook store over at Amazon, and it looks like the same issues are present — and missing — there. I’d guess iBooks probably lines up with that catalog as well.
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Making Sense of Smallville’s “Haunted” Digital and Print Editions
For DC Comics’ same-day print-and-digital releases (i.e. most of their line), the print and digital editions line up exactly. But things get a bit confusing with their digital-first comics, because they run smaller weekly chapters online, then collect them together for the print editions.
In the case of Smallville Season 11, currently running a storyline guest-starring Impulse, every three digital chapters are collected in a print issue the following month. Each digital page is the top or bottom of a print page, run landscape to make it easier to read on a desktop screen or a small tablet.
The numbers get a little confusing because, starting with #28, instead of taking one week off each month to keep the print and digital runs in sync, DC started running a side story during those formerly-skip weeks, which is being collected separately.
Here’s how the digital and print chapters of “Haunted” line up.
Digital Chapters 25-27 = Print Issue #9
Digital Chapters 29-31 = Print Issue #10
Digital Chapters 33-35 = Print Issue #11
Digital Chapters 37-39 = Print Issue #12
Two things stand out about the different covers that suggest different target audiences:
- The digital covers by Cat Staggs go for a realistic look and focus more on the TV show’s cast.
- The print covers by Scott Kolins go for a more stylized, comic book look, and focus more on the guest star and super-heroic elements.
This suggests to me that DC is aiming the digital editions at fans of the TV series and the print editions at more traditional comic book fans. It certainly makes sense — by numbers alone, a lot of people who watched Smallville don’t read comics, and it’s going to be easier to get them to buy online than walk into a comic store. I really wonder what DC’s market research has turned up as far as the digital/print audience breakdown.
Making Sense of Smallville’s “Haunted” Digital and Print Editions is a post from Speed Force. .
Speedster Jesse Quick is back - not in the New 52, but in the digital-first series Ame-Comi as that universe’s Flash.
If you’re not familiar with the title, it started out as a statue line in which DC’s major female characters were re-imagined as anime characters*. They next moved on to adapting female characters who were similar to more well-known male characters: Jesse Quick as the Flash, Duela Dent as the Joker, etc.**
Earlier this summer, DC launched a weekly comic book online featuring these versions of their characters. Wonder Woman has the first spotlight miniseries, then Batgirl, Duela Dent and currently Power Girl. @TheFlashReborn points out that Jesse Quick makes an appearance as the Flash in Ame-Comi: Duela Dent #2.
There’s one more “solo” miniseries starring Supergirl, and then it rolls over into an ongoing Ame-Comi series. Here’s hoping the Flash will get some time in the spotlight soon.
New chapters of Ame-Comi go up online every Monday on ComiXology, and will appear in print starting in October.
*As I understand it, “ame-comi” is a Japanese term for American comics, so the terminology is sort of backwards - it’s an American interpretation of how the Japanese might adapt an American comic book character.
**Eventually they moved into stranger territory, like repainting Jesse Quick as the Black Flash.
This week’s digital Flash back-issues at ComiXology are Flash v.2 #34-36 by William Messner-Loebs, Greg Larocque and Larry Mahlstedt.
In Flash #34-35, Wally West, recently moved to Keystone City, has vanished. All he knows is he’s surrounded by an empty void, his greatest failures come back to haunt him. Meanwhile his friends and allies begin the search for the missing Flash, and a criminal mastermind from the Golden Age resurfaces: The Turtle.
In Flash #36, the speedster gets involved when masked gunmen attack a spiritual medium on live television…and the ancient Atlantean spirit she claims to channel not only appears, but fights off the attack. Or does he? In next week’s issues, Wally’s self-doubt will lead him to join this cult, at the same time as investigative reporter Linda Park goes undercover to expose what’s really going on at the Celestial Enlightenment Ranch.
Out this week:
- THE FLASH vs. THE WEATHER WIZARD!
- The Flash may surviveâ¦but will BARRY ALLEN?
Written by Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato
Cover by Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato
Art by Marcus To and Ray McCarthy
Preview at Complex.
Marcus To and Ray McCarthy are handling interior art for issues #10-11 to give Manapul & Buccellato a bit of a breather before they take over again with #12.
Digital back-issues on ComiXology:
Flash (1987-2009) #31-33
Written by William Messner-Loebs
Art by Greg LaRocque and Larry Mahlstedt
Some real transitional issues. Flash #31, “Comfort of a Stranger,” re-introduces the Pied Piper as a member of the supporting cast and introduces Linda Park. (She appeared briefly in #28 in her role as a TV news reporter.) In Flash #32, Wally West leaves New York for Keystone City and finds super-villains already waiting for him. Flash #33 guest-stars the Joker…or does it?
» Flash v.2 on ComiXology
This Week: Digital Flash(back) #28-30, DC Presents Impulse
This week’s digital releases at ComiXology include three more issues of the 1987-2009 Flash series starring Wally West, plus DC Comics Presents: Impulse #1, itself a collection of Impulse #50-53.
Flash #28 by William Messner-Loebs and Greg LaRocque: “The Porcupine Man” concludes as Wally West’s friends find him…but so do the brother-sister bounty hunter team of Captain Cold and the Golden Glider!
Flash #29 by Lew Strazewski, Grant Miehm and Paul Fricke: In a rare guest issue (I think there were 5 in the whole series), the Flash travels to Casablanca, only to find himself caught between three factions who all want the same political defector. Guest-starring Phantom Lady, Merlyn and Syanide.
Flash #30 by William Messner-Loebs and Greg LaRocque: Date night at the movies should be safe, right? Not when a gunman opens fire from the back of the theater! Wally West has to search a darkened theater for all the bullets fired at an unexpected audience. (This is notable for its portrayal of super-speed from the Flash’s point of view.)
» Flash v.2 on ComiXology
The Impulse collection features four issues by Todd Dezago and Ethan Van Sciver.
Impulse #50: Impulse teams up with Batman. What more do you need to know?
Impulse #51: It’s hard enough to get those collector’s-item variant action figures before the super-villains get in on it!
Impulse #52-53 Inertia makes his move, attacking Impulse while Kalibak keeps Max Mercury busy.
So far only a handful of Impulse issues are available online. Judging by the DC Comics Presents: The Flash collection released last week, they probably won’t post the solo issues into the Impulse series, at least not immediately, though really, all they’d need to do is add the covers. They don’t even need to come up with guided navigation for that.
» Impulse on ComiXology
» DC Comics Presents on ComiXology
(Covers via comics.org)
I never thought I’d open up an email from ComiXology with a giant banner featuring Wally West with Iris and Jai, but here you go
ComiXology’s DC Father’s Day Sale features “The Wild Wests” and Flash #237, since they deal heavily with Wally West as a father, as well as the main Flashpoint and Batman Knight of Vengeance miniseries (less for the Flash, and more for the Batman). The Flashpoint books have been up for a while, and are discounted to 99 cents each for the sale. The Flash issues are up for the first time.
I’m thinking this might be a good opportunity to read Batwoman: Elegy or some more Starman. (Unfortunately I can’t remember how far into the series I got when I started - I may have already read all the ones in the sale.)
It looks safe to say that DC and ComiXology have settled into a pattern, releasing three issues of the 1987-2009 Flash series each week. Among this week’s releases are Flash #25-27, featuring the middle segment of the “Porcupine Man” storyline that ran from Flash #24-28.
After the events of Invasion!, Wally West has been left powerless. In Flash #24, a team of scientists tries to re-create the accidents that gave him and Barry Allen their super-speed. It works…but his control is gone. In the moment he starts running, he cuts a swath of destruction across North America, then disappears. The next few issues follow scientists Tina and Jerry McGee and Wally’s neighbor Mason Trollbridge as they follow his trail and search for Wally West, only to find rumors of a legendary creature of the southwest desert: the Porcupine Man.
» Flash (1987-2009) on ComiXology.
Update: I didn’t notice it in the blog post, but ComiXology has also added a digital edition of DC Presents: The Flash #1, a reprint book from 2011 containing a collection of Silver-Age time-travel stories.
Spotlighting tales of time travel and the Rogues! Collects [ed. note: stories from] SHOWCASE #4 and 14, THE FLASH (1959-1985) #125, 130 and 139, pitting The Scarlet Speedster against Mirror Master, Captain Boomerang, The Top, Captain Cold, and more! NOTE: some issues are available individually online.
It’s a bit of an odd choice: wouldn’t it make more sense to digitize the original issues and then bundle them, rather add content from The Flash somewhere other than The Flash? I guess this way is easier since DC has already restored these stories, and they don’t have to take the time to restore the other story from each issue. (Most Silver-Age Flash issues contained two short stories instead of one full-length story.)
Showcase #4 (including “The Man Who Broke the Time Barrier”) and Flash #125 (“Conquerors of Time”) are already on ComiXology. Flash #139 (“Menace of the Reverse-Flash”) is a full-length story, so the only thing missing is the cover. That leaves one story each from Showcase #14 (“Giants of the Time World” is in this collection, but Dr. Alchemy’s first appearance isn’t) and Flash #130 (“Who Doomed the Flash?” is collected, but not “Kid Flash Meets the Elongated Man”) needed to get a full set in the library for the series itself.